On Sunday, I had an opportunity to ride in a schooling dressage show at Starlight Farm, where we have several Akindale horses for the winter. It's early days yet, but I can easily say how lovely it is to ride with a roof over my head!
Ah, the little things.
It had only been a week that I'd seriously ridden Flurry - since she'd arrived at Starlight. I don't know if she'd ever had any dressage training, and if she didn't, she took to it very easily. She's still very weak in her hind end and back, but the progress she's made in a week has been astounding!
My wonderful husband Matt stood behind the judge to tape the dressage test. What are you looking for? Smoothness between transitions, an acceptance of the rider's aids (accepting the bit, relaxing and lifting the back and bending their body while in a circle) and promptness of cues.
In essence, you shouldn't be able to see me give Flurry any signals - it should look like she's doing all of the movements on her own and I'm just sitting pretty up top.
Each movement gets a score of 1-10, with 10 being the best. Not only did Flurry score several 7's, but she even got an 8 on her final centerline and halt!
I was thrilled with her performance. The judge called her "Charming, with a lot of heart."
That's my girl.
Without further ado....Flurry's Debut!