Thankfully with rest and bodywork, Pringles’ back is again feeling great. Overall our training at home has been going well, so this month we were able to attend a few events and training opportunities away from home.
Our first challenge was a show jump freshman’s day. This was such a great training experience and Pringles took this all in her stride, coping very well with the environment and other horses. She was still a bit anxious when I left her at the float or yards by herself. She did break off the float twice but she is certainly improving.
After a good experience at the freshman’s, our next challenge was an unofficial Dressage Tasmania competition. Things started off well with Pringles being really settled in the yards, with all the horses coming and going past her. We then headed out to the warm-up area where she started off a little tense but I felt I could still ride her and get her brain back with me. I was really proud of how she warmed up before we headed over towards the test arena, where the wheels started to fall off. She became very tense and stressed, and all our ‘buttons’ went out the window. We worked through this and went into our test, however, retired two movements into the test due to poor Pringles not coping at all with the environment. I was disappointed as I really thought she was ready but her brain didn’t cope. It has given me plenty of things to work on to improve for next time!
After consolidating at home for a little while we then ventured out to our first show jump competition. This was at the same grounds as the previous freshman event, so a good chance to go where she had a good experience. We had a great day! Still some green horse reactive moments, especially in the warm-up but overall I was very happy with how she handled the day. Pringles is such a lovely and willing horse but she can be very reactive, especially in environments she finds adrenalising or stressful. This just shows me that I need to continue to get her out and about to expose her to different environments and situations. We will also continue to further her education at home to help us when we are out of her comfort zone.
As well as our outings I have continued to consolidate our training, both at home and with our weekly flat lessons. I have also had both her saddles refitted; her dressage saddle was fitting well however her jump saddle needed adjusting due to her filling out and changing shape.
The end of this month marks the 12-month anniversary since Pringles’ last race.