Show Recap: Blue Rock Classic

I have so many alternate titles for this show recap:

“Prioritize Your Protein: I Don’t Want to Look at Steak for Quite Some Time”

“Step Up: Not the Dance Movie, Just Trying to Match My Horse’s Skill Level”

“Rain Dances: For the Love of God Stop Doing Them, We’ve Had Enough”

etc.

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Baby thoroughbred just wants snuggles alllll the time. 

But at the end of the day, here’s your basic recap: Frankie was a freakin’ rockstar. You can stop reading now if you were just on the edge of your seat wondering if he would be a good boy. I know it’s a rarity.

I’m not going to go in chronological order for this post because I don’t feel like it, so here’s what happened:

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DragonPony went in the ring rarin’ to go every time. Smart boy knows what the buzzer means now!

Big Guy packed me around the Highs like a pro, as per usual. I will say, the first day I had a bit of a tough time. In the past, Frankie has landed off the jumps a little unbalanced and a little strung out. It’s always taken me a few strides to get my bearings and get him back under me, and our half-halts didn’t go very far- I’ve had to kinda adjust my track to suit the stride length and not the other way around.

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Unrelated he’s just the sweetest most handsome creature.

The fun thing about doing multiple training rides per week and private lessons is that he is now much more fit and broke and holy moly we actually have a fantastic half-halt now. Nowadays he lands balanced and immediately asks me what he should do next. So on that first day I rode him like 2017 Francis needed- a little “louder” with my aids and a little less trusting of my seat, and giving him room where I didn’t need to (or should have). He was a good boy, but was a little peeved at me- he was jumping out of his SKIN and I wasn’t really rewarding that effort.

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Did he clear it tho
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I left the ring with the words, “holy crap I don’t even deserve you, you are a prince.”

So the next day my trainer sent me in with the phrase, “we have beautiful hands.” I rewarded more over the jumps, I trusted his balance, I supported with my leg more without nagging. And lo and behold: we had a lovely course, with a very happy horse.

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Those ears though. I know he loves food and scritches more than anything else, but he does seem to really enjoy his job ❤
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Until I get used to his new style of actually working hard over the jumps, I’m exaggerating my release. Better than punishing him for all that effort!
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And when I ask for the long one, he’s still happy to deliver. Best boy.

Classic day was similar- I’m still learning how to press all the buttons on my crazy-amazing broke horse, he was a little more tired, but overall thrilled with how we went around. I felt like I actually had a brain in my head- when jump 1 came up a little sticky, I actually made a move to help him get set up for jump 2 instead of saying OH CRAP FRANCIS TAKE THE WHEEL like I would’ve in the past. Our sticky moments were less sticky and happened less often, he was less tired and felt fitter than has on Sundays past, and our good moments are getting better and better and more consistent. And of all places, we had a rail over the liverpool. I mean, I’m glad he doesn’t care what he’s jumping, but maybe care a little bit?!

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And we got to compete with one of our barnmates, which was super wicked fun. We agreed that we were definitely the most obsessed with our horses of anyone on the showgrounds. Probably because we had the best horses, and that’s scientific fact.

So there’s our recap of the Highs. Trainer is very happy with his continuing development, we are both continuing to grow and learn, we’re excited to keep improving, and we had a total blast in the ring together. I swear, he is the most fun horse to ride.

But here’s something else that’s super cool: I have a 1.20m horse.

That’s right, the Big Man made it around his first ever 1.20m course with AT!! Both of them worked so so hard and it was absolutely incredible to watch. AT reported that he was a little surprised and definitely needed some help from her to get to the right spot- he can’t handle a joke at that height at this point. But he was game for it and went and played the game, which is all I was hoping for in his first time out. We’ll powwow later to see what our plan should be moving forward, but I am beyond thrilled with how he did.

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Jump 1 was very soft, jump 2 was a surprise, and by jump 3 (this one) he seemed to be getting it.
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NO SCOPE NO HOPE

My sweet boy officially made it around a 1.20m course without looking or feeling overfaced, and I am bursting with pride. This was never on our radar for him when we bought him- his willingness to go out there and try makes my heart so absolutely full.

As usual, Frankie gets an A+ for handling the horse show life. He ground-tied politely at the wash rack despite many distractions, he came out of his stall happily for every ride, and settled right into work despite the icky weather and sloppy footing. We’ve come to expect excellent behavior from him, but I’m still grateful every time that he handles travel and competition life so well.

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He really doesn’t stress about being in new places.

I’ll try to upload some of our videos to YouTube soon so I can share. Frankie will get today off and a few light days to work out any soreness and give him a break, but then we’re back to it and prepping for Upperville in early June!

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More adventures with the Frankfurter!
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28 thoughts on “Show Recap: Blue Rock Classic

  1. Amanda C 05/21/2018 / 9:45 am

    I think I love Frankie almost as much as you do.

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/21/2018 / 9:48 am

      That feels appropriate, he’s the bestest ever. Come visit and you can test the buttons 😉

      Like

      • Amanda C 05/21/2018 / 9:49 am

        Y’all should have just kept driving and gone to Brownland, I’ll be there this week! 😉

        Like

      • hellomylivia 05/21/2018 / 9:56 am

        Haha one of these days we’ll meet in the middle (or I’ll succeed in convincing you to move to VA)

        Like

  2. roamingridersite 05/21/2018 / 10:12 am

    Congrats on a great show! Your partnership with him grows with each of your outings and I love reading these recaps.

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/21/2018 / 10:46 am

      Thank you!! He’s such a patient teacher, we have so much fun out there together ❤

      Like

  3. Tracy 05/21/2018 / 10:14 am

    I just love how far you and Frankie have come, and how you handle preparation for competition with your entire team — you can tell you both THRIVE in the program and enjoy learning and growing so much ❤

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/21/2018 / 10:48 am

      OMG he’s come SO FAR!!! He felt like a totally different horse even from a few months ago in Ohio. We’re super lucky to have such an amazingly knowledgeable and supportive team ❤

      Like

  4. Karen M 05/21/2018 / 11:17 am

    This is super exciting and Frankie is SUCH a cool horse! So happy for you!

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/21/2018 / 12:52 pm

      Thank you!! He was such a star, just gets better and better ❤

      Like

  5. Liz 05/21/2018 / 11:45 am

    Sheeeeeeeiitt. Look at you two! I’m not surprised, but I am even more excited for you. What a gift he is.

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/21/2018 / 12:53 pm

      Biggest gift. Still not sure how I got so lucky as to find him, but I’m grateful every day for that big brown goofball.

      Like

  6. carey 05/21/2018 / 2:04 pm

    Another great show in the books! Congrats! So excited to hear about the next one!

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/21/2018 / 2:15 pm

      Thank you, it was so fun! Can’t wait for Upperville, it’s totally my favorite show of the year.

      Like

  7. Stacie Seidman 05/21/2018 / 2:11 pm

    I’m totally living vicariously through you and Frankie right now. He looks like he absolutely has plenty of scope for the 1.2M just needs to see it a few more times to get comfortable I’m sure. So happy for you! He really is a magical unicorn ❤

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/21/2018 / 2:16 pm

      I think you’re totally right- it’s a comfort factor, and I think a few more outings will help it feel more “normal” for him. Having so much fun with the big guy ❤

      Like

  8. the_everything_pony 05/21/2018 / 3:19 pm

    You guys certainly look amazing out there. You two have gotten sooo good and I’m SOOO glad he can do the 1.20! So exciting for you, and I can’t wait to keep following along 🙂

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/21/2018 / 3:23 pm

      Gah thank you so much, you are too sweet! I’m just proud to bursting of him, he’s been such a champ and we’re having so much fun learning together

      Liked by 1 person

  9. eventerinprogress 05/21/2018 / 4:37 pm

    He is definitely so very gorgeous!

    I love the float set up you guys have over there, so different to how ours look!

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/22/2018 / 7:21 am

      Thank you! I think he’s stunning but I’m admittedly biased haha. We had a blast!!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Elizabeth 05/22/2018 / 7:23 am

    What a good boy! It sounds like a super first outing of the year. Your hard work is really paying off!

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/22/2018 / 7:27 am

      I think it definitely set the tone for a great start to the season!!

      Like

  11. KateRose 05/22/2018 / 9:53 am

    Well done you two! He definitely has scope to spare 🙂

    Like

    • hellomylivia 05/22/2018 / 10:31 am

      I loved getting to see him over the big jumps, so cool!!

      Like

  12. draftmare 05/22/2018 / 2:04 pm

    Wow, sounds like an awesome experience for all!

    Like

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