By Julie Preble, Assistant Editor
This past weekend, I had the opportunity show again. Only this time, I had more of an audience.
My parents flew out to watch me ride. They've been to a few small, 4-H horse shows, but they definitely hadn't been to a reining event.
The show was put on by the Western Slope Reining Horse Association and was in Grand Junction, Colorado. For those of you not familiar with the area, it's about a 4.5-hour drive from where I live in the Denver area.
What a cool drive, too! I've always enjoyed road trips, and this was no different. We even stopped for a lunch picnic along the Eagle River. It's definitely a lot easier when you're not hauling the horses!
The green reiner classes were the very last of the show, so I spent most of Sunday as a ball of nerves. However, I felt much better once I was horseback. I felt confident and prepared.
I'd been over the pattern in my head so many times the night before that I did it umpteen more times in my dreams. We wouldn't go off pattern?or so I thought.
Even though it was one of the best patterns I've run so far, we still DQ'ed. On our second rundown, Hannah anticipated the stop, I urged her on, and then asked for the stop before I was ready.
That bobble made me lose my stirrups, and I had to grab my saddle horn. While I was trying to readjust and get my feet back in place, Hannah started backing up. If the judge didn't notice the saddle grabbing, he certainly noticed the backing.
Overall, it was a great experience, and I'm really glad I had the opportunity. Am I disappointed that I DQ'ed? Sure. (My score would've been a 68 if I wouldn't have!) But, I'm focusing on the things that went well.
I zipped my spins and my left-side circles, so that's something to be proud of. I'm also walking away with a good list of maneuvers to work on?sliding stops in particular!
My parents enjoyed their trip, and they thought reining was pretty cool. They liked my ride, too. Even if I did DQ!