Monday, August 11, 2014

Sweet Onion Live: Western

My Western entries are... okay, on their own. Not compared to anything else, they're passable.

Clearly, I'd underestimated my fellow showers.

Entries like these make me almost glad my roping set-up didn't get done in time... this is just a different level!

Waiting for the day when everyone's documentation is electronic!

I mean, the rope is even in the rider's mouth! I am not worthy.

I was too busy with tack changes to even see the Gymkhana class, but I can guarantee it was just as amazing.

Natural Western Trail was the first Western class the Fjord entered...

The fence isn't as ginormous as this angle makes it look. Promise.

...with his oh-so-thrilling cardboard and balsa wood diorama. It was good enough for a third, but I'm absolutely kicking myself over not getting good pictures of the other set-ups on the table, because WOW.

I think I need a pack of mini dogs for my trail entries. :)

Arena Western Trail continued in the trend of jaw-dropping entries, and was the first class where I got clear pictures of the amazing mini entries!

Go minis go!

The bigs, of course, were bringing their A-games too.

With that kind of competition, I was actually pleasantly surprised with my fourth.

I knew going into it that putting the Fjord in Western Pleasure was more of an "eh, why not?" than a real attempt to be competitive, and I was right.

Look at the tooling!!

The Fjord monster landed in sixth, and I was not surprised. 

The last class of the division was Other Western, with the Fjord trying his hand at Western Dressage.

Throughout the entire day, the performance judge was incredibly helpful with sharing with me why she placed me where she did, and exactly what I could change to improve. Those kinds of little tips are everything to me- now I have a really clear idea of the kinds of adjustments I could make to step up my game for next time.

Wonky rein drape and too far from the rail, but still managed a third.

All of my entries- but my Western ones, especially- were essentially thrown together in a week of crazy work. And I think that reflected in my placings; at this level of competition, polish really does matter. My crazy-busy show brain added to my hasty entries made for a less-than-winning kind of performance day. 

Which is totally okay! It actually makes me want to take the time to sit down and focus on creating entries to the best of my ability, and really fine-tune everything. Shows like this one are fabulous learning experiences, and seeing entries that are a higher quality than yours definitely inspires you to improve.

At this point in the day, I was looking forward to English to at least be back in my own element. And hey, at least the Fjord looked cute in his little English outfit!


  1. I was so happy to see how many mini performance entries there were at this show! I'm used to being the only one. And you did such a great job with packing detail into your mini setups, like your wee entry number and those amazingly fine reins. And I love love love the Fjord monster's twitched back ear! It's such nice character and a lovely detail for performance.

    I definitely agree that preparation is everything in performance. If often takes me a few times out with a new set-up to get the fine details right. Thankfully, judges are pretty great about giving out tips to help you improve. I definitely have a to-do list to improve my stuff before my next outing!

  2. You still did very well! I could never do performance, haha!

  3. Talking of inspiration - I NEED more performance entries! I can't wait to play with more tack! My performance model for tomorrow was so close to being swapped earlier but I decided maybe I shouldn't... After all, I'm very new to this tack business and was concerned taking it off could lead to not getting it back on! Eeek!

  4. I absolutely LOVE your Fjord!! I need a performance pony like him!! :)
    Considering the competition I think you did fantastic!

  5. Those are some great entries! I love all the minis!

  6. Phenomenal entries! Your little Fjord is just precious! What a performance powerhouse!