Voodoo wasn't fizzed by the crowd this year (yay!) but his first run wasn't as fast as it could have been. It was my fault though because I was riding defensively, waiting for him to booger, instead of riding pro-actively and being a good pilot.
Applejack was up next and we had a good warmup. Our run, hmm... well he had stage fright. He came tippy-toeing through the gate, I'm sure his thought process was something like "wow! look at ALL those people!"
I'm used to him running hard to first, even if he comes in the gate a bit slow. Of course he doesn't usually tip toe through. But no, I asked him to pick up and what did he do? Slow easy lope. I joked with the girls afterwards that he was thinking "well if all those people came here to see me I'll go nice and slow so they can admire my beauty" lol
Going to second barrel *sigh* yeah he boogered at the crowd. When we did get there he turned pretty nice though and ran decent to third, decent turn and ran home.
Wednesday was the second go and the order reverses. Appy was up first. My goal was to ride him like the day before hadn't happened - except I was going to carry a whappin' stick.
I do over & under him some on the pattern but I don't usually use a crop. I wanted to be able to give him a light smack to get his attention. The plan was to give him a little smack on the way in and between 1st and 2nd. Some people can do that with the over & under but I'm not quite that coordinated lol
During our warm up I tapped his shoulder with the crop but all it did was slow him down. So then I tapped his hind end and he sped up. Good thing I got that figured out in the warm up, I had been planning to smack his shoulder!
When we went in for our run he walked slowly through the gate, not tip toeing but not too fast of a walk. He glanced toward the crown just as I asked him to go so I smacked his butt a few times and he ran to 1st. Not as hard as he normally does but at least he didn't lope! We had a pretty good turn and went to 2nd, I gave him a couple smacks on the way but he still slowed some. Not too bad but he definitely wasn't focused only on his turn. Decent turn when we got there and off to 3rd. Couple more smacks, turned and ran home. He shaved 2 whole seconds off his previous time!
Still not good enough to place BUT it gives me hope for the next time he runs with a crowd.
Voodoo... I was thinking that if I could shave 1 to 1 1/2 seconds off his run we'd probably make the short go, and possibly even get some day money. It was entirely possible, he had not run as hard as he could the day before. Alas it was not to be :(
Just as I was getting on him to warm up Pie called to tell me Tucker was missing. There was a bit of drama and basically I was left to warm up wondering if my
Normally I don't run with my phone in my pocket but I kept it with me (on vibrate) so that IF Tucker showed up and Pie called he could get in touch with me.
Warm up went okay, even with me being distracted and worried. It really fell apart right before I ran. I took my phone out during the rake to see if Pie had called and sure enough he had, but he hadn't left a message. I could only think the worst... Pie had found Tucker dead on the road or attacked by an animal. After all if there was no message it must be bad news right? Pie wouldn't tell me something like that in a message.
I could NOT focus. Voodoo ran in nice but I just wasn't there for him. I quit riding halfway to 1st and sure enough we knocked. He ran to 2nd and I still wasn't there to help him set up and we hit it. I kinda snapped to and rode to 3rd but didn't get him positioned too well. We didn't hit it but it was a crappy turn.
I got a hold of Pie when I got back to the trailer, Tucker was fine! He had showed up at the back door like nothing was wrong and Pie put him in the mudroom when he left for work.
(in his defence Pie had no idea where I was at in my day, if I was getting ready to run or killing time)
Thank you God but wow, it would have been nice if Pie had left a message so that I could have focused!
(then again if the 'cost' of still having my pup was sacrificing a good run, I'd gladly sacrifice the run. I am ridiculously in love with that pup)
Then my friend Jewls was on her 4th horse of the day (yes she entered 4 horses, yes I think she's slightly crazy and/or a sucker for punishment lol) Dang if that little *bleep* of a horse didn't turf her hard! She had a nice run going and between 2nd & 3rd she started to buck. It wasn't an "I'm frisky" or "I'm scared" or even an "I can't handle running hard yet" buck. It was a DIRTY buck. Out of no where, head down, bronc style buck. Which she has pulled before but its been quite awhile... Jewls was thinking she was finally through that b.s.
Thank goodness Jewls wasn't hurt too badly, although she did bugger up her shoulder. The good news is that Jewls made it back to the short go on her gelding Mav.
Quite a few of our girls made it back, I'm so proud of my district!
I didn't make it back, BUT I missed by only 15! That's the closest I've come to make the short go... next year, yeah that'll be my year!
Tomorrow I'm going to watch & cheer at the short go. I think maybe I'll take Tucker with me... if I can figure out a safe place for him to chill while I watch.