Hey Now, That’s A Fancy Mustang!

People, the show was amazing!

Sue warming up the best Mustang at the show. Also, the only Mustang.

Sue warming up the best darn Mustang at the show. Also, the only Mustang.

Sebastian was his usual self. Calm. Obedient. Hungry!

His stall was full of hay! Clandestine hay is way tastier.

His stall was full of loose hay! Apparently, clandestine hay is way tastier.

Things started off with a bang when he got a second in his warm up class!

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His remaining two classes for the weekend were very large (21 horses each) and full of fabulous horses. The competition was fierce! Each ride was judged by two judges, so it was fun to compare scores and comments between judges. In the USDF Regional Championship Class there were 15 horses above 70% and 2 horses above 80% (that many rides with scores that high is raaaaaaare), so I was crazy excited that Sebastian got an 8th with an average score of 73.9%!

"People get so excited about these things. They must be edible"

“People get so excited about these things. Surely they must be edible.”

Watching him line up for the awards with all the giant warmbloods was hilarious. And made me so proud! Here’s the victory gallop (er, trot):

Trying to keep up!

Trying to keep up!

For The California Dressage Society Horse of The Year class there were two separate rides judged by 2 judges each, so in the end each horse’s score was an average of 4 judges’ opinions.

Suuuuper free walk.

Suuuuper free walk.

According to all those judges’ opinions, Sebastian and Sue are an excellent pair! After the first class Sebastian was in second place with an average score of 74.7. Whoo hooooo!

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In the end his average score among the 4 judges was 72.4%, earning him a 4th for Horse of The Year! What further blew me away was the the consistency of the comments. Lots of “lovely” and “willing horse.”

A very good boy.

A very good boy.

The best part of looking at the scores, however, were that Sue and Sebastian got a NINE on harmony between rider and horse not once, but TWICE!! Getting a 9 is crazy wonderful. Something that essentially never happens to the average rider, and very, very seldom to an amazing rider like Sue. And here it was- twice in one show! That is one special way to know you that you picked the right trainer. Oh yeah!

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So now Sebastian is home and riding him is such a joy. All the hopes I had for him going into training, to help him learn to move in the best possible way and mature his mind with lots of outings, have been greatly exceeded. Riding him now is like driving a sports car (albeit one with very eager brakes), as compared to the station wagon I sent to Sue. I’m even thinking that this dressage thing might be something that Sebastian and I can do together. I’m finding the precision needed to ride a good test to be both challenging and invigorating. It’s going to be my turn to start showing him in October. I must say it’s a little intimidating to show him in this new-to-me discipline after watching Sue ride him so beautifully, but I’m excited to try it out none the less. Here’s to at least not embarrassing myself next month at Greenville!

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