Taylormade Games March 22, 2014

March 25, 2014

On Saturday, Carol Ann and I drove up to Maryland and took part in the Taylormade Stables Individuals competition.  It was a fantastic opportunity to school in a competition format.  For me this meant I got to get a better feel for what Poe and I need to work on.  I also pushed a little more than I would have in a team setting, although I should have done that a lot more than I did.

Our speed weavers race was pretty crap.  I really had to work through the whole race.  In reflection, I usually warm up through bending and move on, never really pushing through it like it’s a real race.  I also found I need to put some more work into my ball and cone / high low, ball skills.  Poe was completely cooperative in those races, but unsure of what I was doing and my confidence was not where it should have been.  Another race I was pretty crap in was bottle.  My end pick up specifically sucked. Again, I blame it on my personal confidence in Poe.  I need to lean more, holding my outside rein lightly to keep him straight, and trust that he will do his part.  I got my pick but it was a weak pick.

I was particularly happy with my mug and flag races, which are generally strong races for me.  3 mug was a bit sloppy at my last practice so I was exceptionally happy to roll through it with that mechanical flowing feel, for the most part.  We lost it just a little on the last turn, and we need to put on some more speed, but the improvement was significant.

Another skill Poe really has going for him, that I need to push him to improve even more, is his amazing breaks.  On most races we were hanging tight with the pack until just shy of the end of the lane, when I checked him up for his turn.  Part of this was because he was often on the wrong lead, and I didn’t trust him to pull through the turn on his own.   Linda correctly told me that he is ready for me to push him through it anyway, and I need to listen to her.  Toward the end of the session he switched his lead on his own just before the turn and was setting himself up like a pro.  This is where I was loosing ground.  I can fix this.

The other place I can gain some ground is when I come up on an obstacle mid lane, and need to check up to complete a skill.  Poe can fly up and stop.  He does not need me to check him up in advance like a pony in training.  So I need to work on trusting him to do his job efficiently.

The pony is smart, and he loves this job.  He really wants to do excel.  So bottom line, I need to trust him.  And really practice bending, like its a real race.

**photo credit to Genevieve of EquiStar Photography**
you can find a link to her work on the right hand side of the page. She is wonderful enough to allow me to use her work in this blog.

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