Saturday, April 19, 2008

A Note From Katee

Got an email first thing this morning from Katee, one of our loyal blog readers who's attending the Midwest Mustang Challenge in Madison and thought I'd share:


I have never attended the Midwest Horse Fair before and I was truly unprepared for the sight I encountered when I arrived at the Alliant Center in Madison. So many cars. So many people. It took about a half hour to find parking and then hike in to the event.

I was told when I called for tickets months ago that there was no reason to have reserved seats for Friday because they weren't anticipating a lot of people attending the in hand portion of the Challenge. Wrong. The small arena was packed full of people. Any seat with a decent view of the action was taken. I was disappointed not to be able to see everything, but thrilled that so many people had shown up to support the mustangs.

The arena was small and the building itself pretty tight. Spectators were only a few feet from the action. Coming into the arena, most of the horses seemed well prepared and ready to go. Moving towards and through the serpentine meant moving towards and past the crowds. The people sat mostly quietly, but were scary nevertheless. At the end of the serpentine, the mustangs had to stop and stand still for hoof lifting right by the crowd. None of the mustangs enjoyed standing by the crowd for this, but many of them did do it. The rest of the course went well for most of the horses. The trailer was scary, but most did go in. The back through was done with ease.

I walked through the barn afterward and was happy to see lots of interested people asking great questions. The BLM had information tables set up in the arena, the barn and a third one in the main Coliseum.

Overall, I think the mustangs handled the crowds and action really well in the barn and arena. I can not wait to see the action today when they are under saddle in the main Coliseum arena. It's a bigger and to me more intimidating space, but the crowds are farther away which might help the mustangs feel more secure.

I've got reserved seats for today's riding and finale events and I'm gonna budget a LOT more time for parking!


And for another look at what's going down, visit Jessie and Remington! Jessie is a bit disappointed because Rem had a case of nerves, so head over and cheer her up!

Around here, Sandy has no clue what will be asked of him in another 47 days. He's happy when we can sneak out into the lush green spring grass for a bite to eat. Yesterday was ride #3 and it was beautiful. We trotted for the first time! And man, let me tell you, I've never ridden such a smooth gaited horse! No motion to jar you around in the least; I could have set a glass of wine on my head and not spilled a drop. I was super impressed because typically a young horse is trying to figure out if they can actually move and carry you at the same time; their balance always seems to be thrown just a bit off those first few attempts at a faster gait, but not Sandy! I gave a few clucks from his back while Jay moved a couple feet away from him and gave him his head. He stepped right into a lovely, smooth, forward moving jog trot. Nothing fast or unbalanced about it. His head was relaxed and he even slowed down into a Western Pleasure jog at one point. I can't even express to you how happy I was with how well he handled it!

Now if we can just get over the snorting issues...

Join the Hay Burner's Club and donate $15 towards Sandy's upkeep and I'll send you a 5x7 photo (once the horse is here, of course.) Or buy advertising space in the form of a button.


Callie said...

That's true , the arena was close quarters and people were repectfully quiet. I'm so glad I got to me Jessie. What a nice young lady! So glad Sandy is progressing so well!

Callie said...

Oops! "meet"

Mustang challange - Gav & Roy said...

I am so happy to hear you are riding. I know what a challenge that is when you have a fearful horse. We had almost given up hope on Roy. It pays to hang in there, cause when you get to this point it is an amazing feeling. I cannot tell you how many tears of joy we have had when Roy makes it to a level we never though would happen. It will be so hard to let him go. We can't wait to meet you, you are so supportive. Thank-you for all you have done!!!

Tracey said...

Callie, I have the same problem with my keyboard. It forgets to put the last letters on all sort o words while I'm typing!

Glad you had an opportunity to meet Jessie. Wish I were closer so I could, too!

Kathy, I'm really glad that things have begun to progress for Gav and Roy! You're right about it being an awesome feeling. I know that when I had Sunny and she finally gave in (after months of work) I would sit down and cry tears of joy. I'm happy that Sandy isn't as frightened as she was, lol!

Mrs Mom said...

Aww c'mon Tracey, the snorts are just Sandy's way of expressing himself a wee bit. ;) He is just a tad opinionated is all! hehe

That trot sounds divine. In fact, SANDY sounds pretty darn awesome all around there. Please give him a big rub from the Southland with an "Attaboy" and be darn sure to get an "AttaWOOOOMAN" from us for you too!

Rising Rainbow said...

I'm with mrs mom, those snorts are just part of his personality. As long as he's doing things the way he is, who cares about the snorts. lol