Thursday, August 18, 2011

Wheeeeeee! and Other Bloopers

Okay, so I recently posted about how wonderfully well our last horse show went.  Well, just so you don't think I'm getting too big for my breeches, I'm going to share with you some pics from other shows, so you can see how things normally work in our world.

My mare, Sugar, is a master of the Rider Over-Ride.  Typically happens when we are approaching an oxer that she finds particularly impressive.  Or maybe it's an oxer that I find particularly impressive.  Will have to give that some thought.  In any case, what typically happens is we'll be cantering down to the fence, and I'll have some idea of where I think we're going to leave the ground.  When we get closer to the fence Sug will make an Executive Decision that, no, she doesn't like my input, and she's taking over the decision making process. 

We then have what I like to call one of our "Holy Crap!" moments, with her taking an ENORMOUS leap and me hanging on for dear life somewhere in the back seat, with my heels up by her ears and my mouth wide open.  I'd like to say my mouth is open in prayerful supplication to my Higher Power, but I'm not going to try and BS you.  You know I'm saying something that my mother would have washed my mouth out for. 

There is some photographic evidence of these moments, which I will now share with you.  Hope you get a giggle or two, and I'd love to hear which one you like the best.

 This picture cracks me up, not only because Sug's giving the oxer way more respect than it deserves (she'd gotten a tap from the crop in the schooling ring to encourage her to go over an oxer she was being lazy with) and because my face is hysterical, but because of what you can't see.  As I was trotting out of the ring the photographer came over to tell me he'd gotten this shot, and to say, "Oh, by the way, I thought you'd like to know your fly's has been down the whole round."  Priceless!


Thought you might appreciate the full sequence here.  Back story is it was our first away show ever, week 4 at HITS Saugerties.  My trainer decided that for our first class we'd just warm up with something smaller than we normally do.  The round was going well, until we rounded the corner to the oxer and final combination. Miss "I Really Think I Should Be A Grand Prix Horse" saw that oxer and LAUNCHED herself skyward, with no warning to her unsuspecting rider.  She landed on the back rail, splintered it, and then took off as if  her hair was on fire at the combination with me hanging on like a burr, holding the reins by the buckle.  Luckily we got through the combo okay, and she passaged her proud self out of the ring as if she'd not just raised several people's blood pressure.


Pic 1 -- Note that the shoe is directly left of her eyes.
Pic 2 -- The shoe is by her schnozz.
Pic 3 -- Now the errant hoof covering is directly to the left of my helmet.
This series was shot from a couple of angles by two people.  You know you're lucky when you have not one, but two people recording your less than stellar moments!  Anyway, Sug was fairly impressed by this triple, and gave a huge leap into the first element.  She then decided that the best way to handle the situation she found herself in (remember, she wasn't taking rider input at this point) was to take ANOTHER huge leap over the second element!  At some point she caught her toe on her front shoe, and as we were rocketing skyward I heard a high pitched whizzing noise.  It was her shoe flying by our faces!  As you can see from the third shot, I had a great view of that shoe as it flew threw the air, smacked into the third element of the triple, and then hit the dirt.   Thankfully she allowed me to pull her up at that point, although she wanted to go for fence #3 and argued with me some about it.   We excused ourselves, left the ring and found a farrier, with her shaking her head and looking around as if to say, "Hey, didja see that?  I jumped so hard and high I jumped right outta my Jimmy Choos! Pretty impressive, huh?"

As you can see, the rest of the show was pretty much more of the same.  We were lucky to get out of there with our lives. You have to say, the mare loves her job!  At least it wasn't an oxer this time.


  1. I think your expression in the first one is priceless. Of course you don't often get to see horse shoes flying around the course by themselves. I think you do a good job of staying with her when she leaves out a full stride!

  2. I don't know....I'm kinda thinking that flying shoe in Number 3 is a definite Kodak moment ;o)

  3. I have to say I like the sequence of three shots. Sug sure decided to try to stretch that one out, and you can tell right from the start that you guys are in real trouble. You area really bracing yourself for the landing. Wowser!


  4. Great blog - why not come and visit where you can post your blog for other Equine Bloggers to follow!

  5. Brilliant! There's an entire thread of bloopers here at Horse and Hound, but none with flying shoes!

  6. Great blog, love the pics. I think the horse shoe one's my favourite.

    Are you interested in guest blogging?

  7. Hi came over from the carnival, great pics! The first one is my fav, love the look on your face.

  8. Oh I'm so with you on the Holy Crap moments...!