Saturday, October 3, 2015

Sentimental Saturday

It's a cold rainy, wet and windy Saturday in Virginia, a day to curl up by the fire, read a good book, needlepoint or even watch football. I was thinking this week about my years showing Sega as the Capital Challenge Horse Show is this week, one of our favorite shows.  Probably my fondest memory (or one of them anyway) with her was at the show, the last time we showed there.  She qualified for the World Championship Hunter Rider Finals three times and each time we did it, we finished better than our previous year's effort.  The last time was memorable.  The WCHR class is difficult to qualify for.  The horses and riders are very talented and the courses were tricky when I did it.  Sega loved to show off when it was a big deal and she was better indoors and seemed to sense when she needed to perform.  This class is held in a smaller indoor ring, and she loved the venue.  The last year we did it we had to go first in the order (about 30 riders/horses) which you never want to do.  You always want to see a few go over the course to see how it rides, where the trouble spots are.  We didn't have that luxury.  It was cold and rainy and we warmed up outside in deep mud.  That I remember well.

When we went in the ring, somehow I just knew she was going to nail it once we picked up a nice canter to the first jump.  She had a brilliant trip with scores in the mid to high 80's.  My trainer told me not to get too excited yet, until others went to see how high the scores were from the three judges. We ended up fifth overall after the first round. The top 12 come back and do a second trip, usually a little shorter. I remember the course started out with an oxer (a fence with front and back rails) on a curve which is rare in today's hunter world (it is harder to start on a bigger jump especially coming off a turn).  We had one tiny error, Sega nicked one jump with her hoof very lightly and one judge gave us a 79 the rest were in the high 80's.  We ended up fourth overall, missing third place by a few hundredths of a point.  It didn't matter.  We were just so happy to be in there, to ride with the best in country and do well.  It was one of my proudest days in the horse show world.  And I will remember it forever.  She was such a special horse.

This is not a favorite photo but it was taken at CC one year.   She loved being a diva.  Enjoy your loved ones today and share some memories or just savour some old ones.

1 comment:

  1. It's so nice to be able to have memories like this and reflect on them! I have so many great ones of my first horse who travelled many places with me.


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