Ups and downs

Last week was interesting. Sam came up very lame on Wednesday. I had a great jumping lesson with him on Monday and he had Tuesday off. On Wednesday, he was very lame behind. He had some slight swelling on the outside of his right hind, but I didn’t see a cut, so I thought the worst: tendon or ligament. I gave him the next few days off until I was able to take him to the vet yesterday. He wasn’t lame on a circle, only when flexed very high behind. The swelling was also gone. So it was determined that he just needed hock injections again. I am just perplexed that he went a whole year without taking one lame step, then was suddenly so lame. I’ll start him back walking tomorrow and see how it goes.

I had a jump lesson with Oh So on Saturday. It got very busy at Morningside. We started at 8am, but some endurance people came soon after and we conditioning their Arabians for a 100-miler I later found. They literally cantered around the track for 10 miles. So they were distracting, plus other people started hauling in as we jumped.

He started out distracted, but I think he settled pretty well. We tried some tricks to get him to slow down in a triple combination. First we put up V poles at the end, but that didn’t phase him. Then we tried a pole laid diagonally across the oxer at the end. That got him to jump up and around better, but he still wasn’t quite slow enough. I took him for a gallop at the end of the lesson to let him blow off some steam.

As I was putting him in the wash stall, he stepped out of his front shoe! His feet have been quite crumbly this summer. As luck would have it, my old farrier happened to be at the facility putting a shoe on for one of his clients who was going to school cross country, so he tacked it back on for me free of charge! What a nice guy.

I had a 4:30 am wake up call on Sunday to take Oh So up to Loch Moy Farm for a combined test. I drove through some really heavy rain, and by the time we got there, it was misty and drizzly, but luckily not pouring. I warmed up for about a half hour and we were the first ones in. He felt alright in the warm up; fairly adjustable and attentive. But the minute we went down centerline, he got distracted by a maintenance guy whizzing by on a Gator. I was able to hold it together, but it was a very conservative test, and we ended up getting a 40.9. Yuck. I’ll be taking him in Sam’s place this weekend to a local dressage show so we can continue to deal with his issues. We made progress this spring, so I don’t know why we’re back peddling.

His jumping was very good though. We did one round for the CT and one extra round for practice. He was a little fussy in the warm up, but went in and jumped correctly and softly over both rounds. I kept my upper body back and it was very smooth.

I’m working at Marlborough Horse Trials on Saturday. It’s always a nice, low-key event. I’m going to try to do a post for Eventing Nation.

Next week, I’m traveling to Texas to cover the Midwest ATC’s. It should be interesting to see how eventing is down south. I’m disappointed to be missing the Middleburg horse trials though. They have finally added training level.

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