|I don't have any pics for this post, so here are some critters I love.||This is Duchess.|
|Almost ready for his show career.|
|I miss my Lexi.|
So here's my philosophy on winning, as a jumper rider and former eventer: Don't try.
Okay, what I really mean is, don't try 95%-ish of the time. I will try to win when these three, and all of these three, conditions are met: 1. It is a money class (which I haven't ridden in in a LONG time, having been horseless for a good seven years and in greenie world for the last few); 2. I'm actually positioned to win if I do things right (meaning there aren't 15 other horses in the jump off who could easily kick my ass); 3. Trying to win will not result in frying my horse's brain; in other words, he can cope with the pressure.
|This horse's brain fries at the slightest provocation.|
That does not mean that I don't care about pulling rails or time faults, because I REALLY DO. I always prepare to ride clean and inside the time, and I typically pull that off. And sometimes I win because other people made more mistakes than I did that day. And sometimes I don't win even though the horse's performance put me over the moon with happiness. It doesn't matter. It's not worth trying to win, because it isn't worth galloping recklessly around a course and taking huge risks that could demoralize or fluster my horse or get one of us hurt. And I know y'all know what I mean, you've seen plenty of those riders.
|Another nutty horse I used to ride. She's an eventer now.|
Now, don't get me wrong, I make rider errors that piss the horse off or confuse him or whatever, as do we all. I'm not saying "be perfect or don't ride." I'm saying that don't throw your education and horse sense to the wind the minute you get your sights set on a blue ribbon.
|Ella wants all the points if points = toys.|
Further, there are entire horse shows that I won't go to because I don't think it's worth it if you AREN'T going to be competitive (Upperville, for instance, which is less than an hour from my house and I have a really nice show jumper, but we won't be going, because he is not an Upperville horse and I haven't shown in a good 18 months). That doesn't mean YOU shouldn't. If you want to do Dressage at Devon just because and you know you're not going to win anyway, that's fine. I just don't, because I don't have any real money, and that's just how I've organized my life.
|Back when I was pretending to be a dressage rider, double bridle and all.|
This horse wasn't gonna win any year-end awards, as he reared in half his tests.
Still got his rider a silver medal, though.
|Do points = peppermintses?|
|Forget points. Chase naps.|