LOPE Benefit Show I
There is too much to tell about my fun day at the LOPE Benefit show! Instead of writing a novel, I’ll break it up into chunks. For those of you who like the cliff notes, here they are:
- I was ridiculously over dressed and wore a shadbelly
- Had some of my personal best riding over fences (in my opinion)
- NECK RIBBONS
- I fell off!
Now, the nitty gritty details!
7:45am was the first posted ride time for our hunter/jumper gals dabbling in the eventing derby. So the day started bright and early as the horses pulled in at 6:30am in the pitch black. Sidenote – my trainer meets us at the show with the horses which easily gives me an extra or two of sleep… and she takes them home! This is (one of the reasons) why she is the best trainer. End side note.
Anyway, I realized it had been since May that Simon had been off the property so I wasn’t sure what to expect. He basically stepped off the trailer in the pitch black and said, “Oh. A horse show.” and started eating grass. We lunged. We schooled. It was pretty non-eventful.
I was proud of staying super relaxed during our brief morning schooling. Since this was a “come all and do all the classes” kind of show, my trainer was literally speed walking from the dressage ring, to the event derby, to the hunter ring back and forth all morning. She said to hop over some jumps if I had the opportunity, so we jumped everything in the jumper ring except for a wall I deemed big and scary (which later was not big and scary at all).
Insert a few hour break where my horse stayed tied at the trailer like a good boy (minus one broken lead rope… but hey no broken fingers for me today!) and it was time for the hunter derby.
Fun fact, I had heard rumors of a “Best Turnout” award. A perfect derby round with flying changes? That’s iffy for us. Good turnout? I can do that!
So I went a little overboard and wore my shadbelly… and braided my horse… and put ‘OTTB’ sparkles in his mane. Though I never heard of any best turnout award announced, I got lots of comments on his little OTTB braid charms. Plus, I don’t get to wear my shadbelly often. Let’s be honest, it’s super fun to canter around with tails flying after you… even if it is for a little show.
As the derby goes, it didn’t run like a traditional derby and wasn’t judged by the show’s hunter judge. My goal was to get good distances to all my jumps and carry some pace. We botched the first fence because I picked up the wrong lead and didn’t set him up correctly, but other than that I was really happy.
He was maybe a little expressive in parts, but Simon will never be a dead head hunter. It’s bothering me less and less. There’s certainly some counter-cantering since there were a lot of left turns (he likes to land right) but honestly this is about as good as we can do right now. I feel like I rode well, and was really happy with how it all went down. We also did all the high options, but then again they were only 2’6″ 😉
We ended up 3rd. The hunter superstar from my barn won, and I didn’t watch the other riders. This was one of those rides though that I felt really good about, so the ribbon is just a nice bonus!
38 thoughts on “LOPE Benefit Show I”
What fun! Love love love the pic over the purple X- his expression in adorable!
You ended up with lots of good pictures!
Yes! SOF riders united to try and get everyone photographed 🙂
You and Simon look very well turned out and your course looked really nice and smooth 🙂 Can’t wait to hear about the jumping!
Simon looks like he’s going great! So much for the mystery lameness/disease! Also the braid bling is TOO CUTE.
He’s doing really well. We take it day by day and continue to look for areas to improve little things, but overall he seems to feel fantastic.
Simon looks awesome! And so do you – way to go!
I looked at that course map and was thinking that almost all the turns were the same direction! You guys had a real nice round!
Yup, whoever designed the courses for the entire show really liked left! 🙂
He makes the cutest faces over fences! Great job and rock on shadbelly! If I had one I’d wear it as often as possible. 🙂
You guys look great!
You two look fabulous! Congratulations. I really love how you’re able to appreciate what you’ve both accomplished in full without worrying about ribbons and placings. I think the world would be a much more amazing place if everyone could notice their personal achievements without worrying about awards of some kind. =) You and Simon are such a great team!
I tend to get really hung up on ribbons. It’s a problem. However, I’m learning more and more that I just can’t compare myself to other people and have to ride for personal bests. I’m planning on owning my horse for a long time, and so long as we are having fun the rest needs to be a nice extra… not a need!
Woohoo! You definitely rode really well in the Derby — planned your path and really asked for pace which made everything flow so nicely!
I love having that great ride that just feels good! I see you getting those options girl- way to go!
You guys look great! Congrats! I’m glad you feel so good about this ride, you should!
Simon looks like he was having the best time! Y’all look so great in the derby!! Love your bling braids!
omg neck ribbons ahhh
Sounds like fun! Good job! The Ottb charms look very pretty!
Congratulations! I love the braid bling. And neck ribbons — aaahhhhh I want!
I’m wearing mine to work today. Just kidding… but I want to.
You guys look stunning! Simon is so handsome!
CONGRATS!! Wonderful ride – LOVE his face in all the photos! I really want a shadbelly now…
Get one! It is my favorite piece of clothing ever. I may have to wear it to a fancy dinner sometime 🙂
I think you looked GREAT!!!! I am so jealous of your cute turnout, cute horse and really, really nice sympathetic riding of your boy. Love your hand and body position. You guys looked exactly like you knew what you were doing. Boy, would I love to try that and look half as good. Congratulations!
Thanks! Although I’m not sure we really know what we are doing.. fake it till you make it I guess 🙂
I’m sure there will be more about the ribbons but neck ribbons are the BEST!
Oh yes, they almost got their own post of ribbon spam!
Look at you rocking those bling braids!! My inner diva is way impressed. 🙂
Simon has a really cute expression when jumping – love the pricked ears! And love that you rocked the shadbelly!
You guys are so great! 🙂
Looking good!! Love the shad (I almost want to do hunters just for the shad!) and the braid bling. Simon’s expression as he goes around is utterly adorable, hr looks so happy and cheerful to be there! Nice riding for you, love the good pace and corrections to bring it back to medium. Thought you hit that purple X bang on! Nicely done and congrats, can’t wait to hear more! 🙂
Thanks! Pace is tricky for us but we are *starting* to figure it out. Still lots of room for improvement.
LOVE the OTTB sparkles and shadbelly lol. you guys look great in that derby, congrats ! 🙂
You two look so great!! I love his bling in the mane and his expressions over the jumps are so sweet – someone loves his job! 🙂
You guys look awesome…neck ribbons? helloooooooo
Just catching up on blogs… you guys look great, especially given everything you two have been through lately!
I saw the OTTB braids on instagram. Love it!