Our schooling session Th. evening was fantastic. Bailey hopped off the trailer without any spookiness or looksies, and settled right in like he owned the place, lol. We put in a VERY solid dressage test and scored a 36. I was super pleased. Plenty of 7's, good remarks, and helpful comments. Most of the mistakes were mine...my geometry is pretty awful. BUT, he stayed sane, focused, and was even trying to think ahead during our test.
Stadium has become our new nemesis, since dressage has gotten under control. He can get pretty looky, and has a tendency to deer jump when in doubt. It definitely didn't help that the course was tight, but the arena was huge, and my brain seemed to stay at the in-gate. I really want to see the video, because I have NO idea how we didn't pull a rail. At one point I had time to look to my next fence, look down and think "Oh, we're going to land in this oxer!", and look back up. I tacked on 12 time faults due to poor pilot errors, but overall I was happy with the round.
XC was a blast, like usual. He started off super strong, convinced we were supposed to be at Training speed, and we had a bit of a disagreement about who the brains of the operation were before Fence 6. He got wiggly at a suspended log going into a sunken road, but he went over. Then of all things he was looky at the water, and he's usually a water ninja. We trotted through the first time, but on the way back he decided (with help from spurs/crop) that cantering really was easier. We were a little slow through the middle of the course, but the last four fences were awesome, and we came in 3 seconds under OT.
To say I am thrilled is an understatement. We not only survived, we had a GOOD time, and had good, solid rides. If I had been in two of the other divisions I qualified for, I'd have been in the top ten and gotten a ribbon! I will definitely be posting the link to pictures once they are uploaded.
I must say, getting to watch THE biggest riders in the country, like Michael Pollard, James Alliston, and Hawley Bennet-Awad, was amazing, and inspiring. And, our new goal is to do the Training half star next year. We shall see!