Monday, September 23, 2019

Blog Hop: Viva Carlos's 10 Questions

1. Favorite quirk your horse (or a horse you’ve spent time with) has?
Theo's such a quirky dude, it's hard to pick one.  Probably the way he sticks the tip of his tongue out when he's really thinking.  This is also when he seems to be sucking on his bit.  Not chewing, but sucking on it like it's a pacifier.  It's a very light, engaged contact but it sure ain't what they describe in the books.  It's more like the vaquero idea of a horse picking up the bit.  When Theo's on the bit, it's because he's carrying it for himself.

Sticking his tongue out as usual

2. Three adjectives that perfectly describe your horse?
Curious, sensitive, affectionate

 Hungry was a close fourth

3. Plan your next ride. What will you do/work on?
Tomorrow is a dressage school so it will be lots of shoulder in/haunches in/renver as we work on Theo being more comfortable and less resistant.  I need him to be a bit more prompt off of my leg while letting me practice keeping him on the outside rein regardless of how I'm manipulating him.  Will probably do some flying changes to keep on that project.

4. Have you ever trained an OTTB? If yes, what was the biggest challenge?
Nope, my OTTB trained me.  He was already a school master when I got him.  I've worked with a lot of OTTBs but all were after being let down and having at least a few rides with someone else.

  The world's best OTTB

5. Have you ever groomed or worked for a professional rider?
Yes, I was a groom for an h/j barn and man, that's a tough gig.  Out lunging hunters as the sun comes up, slamming in studs because they're jumping in the grass ring, hurrying down to the ring with perfectly turned out horses to meet up with their riders, then take the horses back up and get them put to bed.  Amateur owners are tougher than professional riders because they aren't as organized and there's a lot more nerves involved.  Nervous riders = snapping at the help.

6. Favorite horse and rider combination?
Hm, Ingrid Klimke and Franziskus.  Pretty much any horse Ingrid rides makes me happy, but I particularly like seeing her soft touch in the dressage ring with this stallion.  Isabel Werth and Bella Rose is a close second because you can see how much she loves that mare.

7. Have you ever ridden a horse at the beach?
Yes with both Fiona and Theo.  With Fiona it was amazing.  We galloped, we played in the waves, she had so much fun.  It was one of the very few occasions where I could let her truly stretch her legs and give it all she's got (and blow right past all the other eventers we were racing).

Between gallops, she's probably sizing up the competition

With Theo?  Not nearly as relaxing.  I think if I took him with a single other horse and we had a nice walk/trot, he'd enjoy it.  We did have a nice canter with a friend and he was good for that.  But he also flipped out and started rearing by the end of the outing so not our best ride together.

Please don't buck me off

8. If you could experience the equestrian community (i.e. ride and compete) in another country, what country would you choose and why?
I think I'd like to try riding in Germany just because everyone I know that has gone over there to train talks about how crazy different it is.  Trying different disciplines has taught me a lot, I think I'd learn even more trying another country with a whole other system.

9. In your opinion, what is an item of tack that is given unnecessary hype?
Five point breastplate.  So many people jumping two foot in a monster breastplate for no dang reason.  Also flash nosebands.  How did that become the default?  Why do people still think Theo is somehow only half dressed because he doesn't have one?  He doesn't need one and his bit is plenty stable without it!  *end rant*

10. What was the first horse you rode called? Are they still alive?
 Rusty Nail, Nails for short.  I did a pedigree search and sure enough, there's an OTTB from 1976 called Rusty Nail.  That could easily be him, right age, color, and gender.  He passed away while I was still at that barn, so I know he's not with us anymore.

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