2017 has started with a huge bang for Stormy and I! We were back out competing in early January, competing in the Interschool dressage qualifying classes in an attempt to qualify for Nationals in September.
We placed second at Southern Vales Dressage Club against strong competition, and fourth at Mt Crawford. We then made the decision to register for the show horse disciple, the only issue being I cannot complete the lead phase of the discipline due to my leg. Luckily my little sister has been granted an exemption to complete this phase for me. We competed at Murray Bridge Show in February, winning the secondary show horse and gaining a qualifying score towards Nationals!! The following week we competed at a state interschool competition, placing second in the secondary show horse (he was the only Standardbred in the class), and going way over the qualifying scores needed for Nationals!! We had dressage the same day, however by our draw time, we had been at the competition for 8 hours and Stormy was understandably over it! He still rode a nice test, and once again placed mid field against all open breed horses. In February we received the news that we had been accepted into the SA State Dressage Championships! It was a dream come true to be given the opportunity to compete at this event, even if it meant missing my Yr. 12 formal.
At the championships I could not fault Stormy! He rode two of the best tests he has ever ridden, however the judge at B was scoring rather low, dragging our score down. It was a low scoring class all round, leaving us in 8th place in the Youth Rider. Once again Storm was the only Standardbred there, possibly the only Standardbred to ever compete at this event. We received fabulous comments on his canter and 8’s for his medium walk.
We continue to train with Megan, and Storm is building muscle every day. We have started travers, and his shoulder ins are becoming much more established.
This weekend we are competing at Mt Barker Ag Show in an attempt to get another qualifying score for nationals. The following weekend we are competing at the Royal Adelaide Autumn Horse Show, where Storm will contest both the breed and open Galloway classes. The following week we are away for 3 days at the Interschool State Championships where we hope to confirm a place on the SA Team for Nationals. We will then have a weekend off before travelling to the SPPHASA State Championships where we aim to defend our 4 state championships. The Autumn dressage festival in May is also in our sights.
To think that this time last year Storm didn’t know how to canter and now he is competing at the dressage state champs and possibly going to Nationals amazes me! I remember sending a text to Megan this time last year asking if she thinks we can teach him to canter ready for the Royal which was in 4 weeks. Megan’s reply was “ok yes enter open. Why not have a challenge 😉 Like Jess needs anymore motivating!!” so we haven’t looked back since. Being in Yr. 12 means we are training at 5:30am so I have time for homework, but it doesn’t seem to faze my amazing little man. If 2017 has taught us anything so far it is that Dreams really do come true!