I hope everyone had a good showing/driving year. I haven’t really updated our show year, but it was quite full with some local shows and for the first time in 2 years, we were able to cross the border and did Metamora CDE and Garden State CDE as well as some pleasure and line shows which concluded for us at the Royal Winter Fair in Toronto at the beginning of November. Now its time to take off the shoes and give the ponies (and us) a break for the winter.
I was able to qualify our single pony on the line and under saddle in Hunter and Dressage Sport Pony at our first show in the late spring for the Royal Winter Fair (you just need a 1st place in each of the classes you want to show in at the Royal). So it was nice to have qualified at the first show - this way I didnt have to go to any other shows with him and I could concentrate on getting my 2 year old out and about for some line classes off property.
We did take our pair to a local 2 day CT and they performed really well. Hubby had a bit of a brain fart and went off course on the dressage test, but fixed it and continued on.
It was a busy year for us as we also held my sister in laws wedding at our farm (on the same weekend as Bromont CDE so we did miss that one this year). I was able to get my 2 year old out to one Half Welsh/Sport Pony class where he won his classes and was Reserve Grand Champion - so I was now ready for the Royal with my now 2 qualified ponies.
We decided last minute to drive a single at Metamora as we wanted to do a little more training and homework with one of our pair first. We entered in the single Prelim pony Championship and our boy did not disappoint. He ended up first place single prelim pony and had the lowest score out of all 27 Prelim entries and ended up North American Prelim Champion.
We went to our friends farm in PA a bit early (one week before the NJ Garden State CDE) and it rained every day we were there! I just rode in their indoor and we were able to drive in their crushed gravel dressage ring 2 x before the show. Thank goodness the rain stopped a day before Garden State and the footing somehow was quite decent for dressage and marathon day. We entered in the Single Prelim Pony division (could not do the American Championships since we are not US citizens) and had a bit of a rough go on dressage day. We did some bitting changes to see if he would be a bit happier for marathon day, and after a bit of a rough start, he seemed to be a bit happier and ended up 2nd place overall (we were 5th place after the rough dressage but moved up after marathon and cones). It was so nice to be back in the US, and we had a great time at a new venue as we have never been to those show grounds before. It was a bit of a drive for us at 11hr, but we were able to break it up.
I finished my show year at the Royal Winter Fair where I had 11 classes with my 2 ponies (I was very busy!!). We ended up placing well in our line classes (which were huge - 19 ponies in several of the divisions!!) and won the Ladies to Drive in the big ring on an evening performance. There were 14 ponies in the ring, which is the largest its been in years (the Royal has not happened for the past 2 years due to COVID so entries seemed to be quite up!). There was an accident in the first class, which luckily was contained quickly as it could have been really, really bad. As it was, they did crash into the back of another carriage and almost flipped over, but luckily it did not, but the shaft did break. They brought the pony/carriage out of the ring as we carried on afterwards to finish the class quickly (as the judge is on a tight time restraint). I was quite rattled, but my pony was great and just trucked on like a little pro.
We were 2nd in the 12.2h and over group and ended up Reserve Grand Champion on the second day. It is a tough 4 day indoor show, which the barn is heated and we were stabled upstairs which is a bit quieter with less crowds and nice and warm. A little slower getting to the rings as we have a large ramp to climb (not to mention pushing our carriage up and down the ramp!!). The air is not the greatest quality as its recycled, but the ponies didn’t get sick (but I sure did!!) so I’m grateful for that.
I also picked up my new foal (BPRx welsh mare x warmblood (Hanoverian) at the end of September and I couldnt be happier with him. He seems like he’s going to be a big boy as he’s just over 5 months and 13h right now. I bred for a small horse as his dam is 14h and sire is 17h, but I’m thinking he may end up around the 16h mark. Time will tell and I really don’t mind what size he finishs (though 16h would be pretty neat!).
Glad to have the year done and we had lots of fun this year. Ponies are enjoying their break and are out for about 14hrs a day just relaxing and enjoying each others company.
Here are some random pictures through our show year