This past weekend Chance and I had a fantastic time at the 2011 Del Mar National Horse Show CDI!!! After a hard week of training in preparation for the show, we arrived at the show grounds on Wednesday to get Chance settled in and used to his new environment. Then on Thursday we had a great warm-up ride before the start of the show and I was definitely pumped up and ready to ride!
On Friday Chance and I had a very nice, consistent ride in the Young Rider Team Test. He did get a little bit tense in the scary indoor Del Mar arena, but he was well behaved and didn’t have one spook! We did have a couple of small mistakes, but overall I was happy with our ride. We were rewarded with a 64.3% and 3rd place in a class of 13! Plus, the day ended on a great note when I found out that I received the Willy Arts Grant from the Dutch Warmblood Society of North America. Three $3,000 Willy Arts Grants are given out each year to selected Young Riders to use for training, clinicing, and the expenses for the Young Rider Finals. I am so excited and grateful to be one of the 2011 recipients and I cannot thank Willy Arts, Natatalie Bryant, and the whole KWPN of North America enough!
On Saturday I really wanted to push Chance a little bit more and see just how much I could get out of him. We had a great warm-up and I was super excited to get in the show arena. I have to say that was one of my most favorite tests to ride because it was just so much fun and I had a great feeling the whole time I was riding it! The judges apparently thought it went well too because we got another 3rd place with a 65.6%!
We wrapped up the show on Sunday with a fun freestyle to our Harry Potter music! Chance was definitely tired by then, but it was a blast and a great way to end the show season. We got yet another 3rd place behind Brandi Roenick and Mackinizie Pooley with a 68.2%, my highest score in the Young Rider tests so far!!! We are now officially done with the show season and have a 65.75% average towards the Region 5 Team. Chance and I have three months to train before (hopefully) heading to Kentucky at the end of July for the North American Young Rider Championships! Qualifying ends at the end of June so we still have a while before knowing whether or not we will officially be on the team. I’ll keep you updated on our progress, and wish us luck!
Posing with fellow Young Riders Brandi Roenick and Mackinzie Pooley. We were the top three in the class all three days.