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share your warm-up ring horror stories!

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  • share your warm-up ring horror stories!

    I'm collecting a few warm-up ring horror stories. From rudeness to outright dangerous behavior, I'd like to hear what happened and how you handled it! Please share and I'll follow up with you via PM. Thanks!

  • #2
    Hmm, this isn't rudeness or anything like that. But my warmup ring horror stories have all involved loose horses.

    Parents, trainers, PLEASE check the girth before you let a kid on her horse at a show!! LOL! And check it again too! Not only did the saddle slide around and the kid fall off, but the horse took off with the stirrups hitting it and crashed into several other horses, who um, ejected their riders as well....then the horse galloped through the facility through THREE of the show arenas....and the show had to be stopped until they could catch him....When they finally DID catch him, the tween and her mom saw that he had sprung a shoe. Not about to miss her NEXT class, the tween took her horse over to the show farrier, without putting the horse in a stall first to come down from the adrenalin rush and the farrier, not knowing this was THE horse that stopped the show, went to take a look and got DOUBLE BARRELED and put in the hospital....sigh.

    The other one was a loose horse at championships who ran from the stalls where he was presumably being untacked into the warmup ring where I was about 10 minutes from my championship class...it was my friend's horse who had just completed her ride in our class! Horse was immediately caught, or it could have been a disaster....

    Comment


    • #3
      I was at a show once and had a very kind, submissive young horse. It was not his first show and he was fine with company at that point.

      One trainer on a firebreathing monster kept passing us very close. We were on the outside rail and had nowhere to go. The trainer laughed each time he flew by and saw my horse cringing. Finally he actually slammed into us, and my horse hit the wall. At that point my horse became totally unrideable in company. If a horse came too close, he would kick or bolt - and this is a horse who was the most mild mannered pleasant horse even to other horses. I could not even show him because of his fear of other horses after this incident. It took years before I could ever even warm up in a ring with other horses. I had (and have) my own place and it's really difficult to get a horse over this sort of incident when you ride by yourself all the time. It took YEARS but by trail riding, and actually doing 25-mile endurance rides for fun, he finally got to where I could show him in dressage, where he was in the class by himself - and we just 'managed' the warm up. I could never have ever shown him in a rail class again.

      This was a long time ago. If I knew then what I know now I would have reported the "trainer" to the steward and filed a complaint against him.
      Donerail Farm
      www.donerailfarm.com
      http://donerailfarm.wordpress.com/

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      • #4
        Largest County Fair in America. Night class. Lead my horse out of the barn to mount and hear the beginning of the very large fireworks display begin. Decide the safest place is on the horse. Proceed to warm up while the fireworks display is launched from the parking lot next to the warm-up arena.

        You would think the fair officials would notify the horse show officials of such things.

        Thank God it was a Saddlebred. The war horse ancestors saw us through.
        Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans

        Comment


        • #5
          Fortunately, I've never had a bad experience in the warm up. Our warm ups are usually better than our actual tests, LOL! But I've been the ring steward enough times to see some bad stuff.

          At one of our shows, there is a covered warm up arena. The rule was that the riders riding in the adjacent arena were priority. Because it was covered, there are a lot of people in that warm up from other arenas. We had a GP rider warming up a friesian stallion - well behaved, but doing lots of calling and snorting. The rider was well known, professional and very polite. She was going to be riding her warm up in the adjacent arena, so she had priority. At the same time, there was a kid warming up for up and down green as grass test that was taking place in another arena that was further out.

          No one saw anything happen, but before you know it the mother of the kid is SCREAMING at the GP rider. Telling her to get out of the arena, she had no business bringing her stallion into the warm up and scaring her kid. The GP rider tried to calm the mother down, but the woman kept screaming at her and literally chased the rider out of the arena. We had to call the TD on the mom!

          At another show, there was another rider that wouldn't give up the rail, so she got passed by another rider on the left- no problem right? The rider on the rail kicked the other rider's horse, and left a boot mark!
          "I'm holding out for the $100,000 Crossrail Classic in 2012." --mem
          "With all due respect.. may I suggest you take up Croquet?" --belambi
          Proud Member of the Opinionated Redhead Club!

          Comment


          • #6
            I try not to be "one of those riders"!! My young horse is deathly afraid of other horses near him. Not sure if this is because we work alone on a regular basis at home. I try my best to find the quietest place, away from everyone. I am always very relieved to get into the competition ring, because he just loves being by himself! One time we just stopped and stood still in warm-up until his heart rate came down. Poor thing, he was so scared In the 3 years I've had him it has gotten better, but a lot of riders don't pay attention to where they are in relation to others in warm-up. I'm glad he is excited to show, but I want him to save that energy for the ring. By the end of the day he is exhausted!
            Mirror Image 2001-2007

            Comment


            • #7
              DD is warming up before a show on plucky little pony. He takes really good care of his kids and doesn't tolerate other horses endangering his riders. Enter trainer from another barn on 17hh+ monster. It's snorting, blowing, dancing and really light on the front end. I will say that trainer could seriously ride and she was truly trying to get him under control. He decided to try out for the rodeo no one told him he was at and dislodges his rider. He's bucking and squealing and putting on an impressive show meanwhile we have riders vacating the ring like there is a fire. I'm manning the gates which means I cannot get to DD without letting the monster out. Pony is trying to get to us with his short little legs and is just not fast enough and keeps getting blocked. Finally he does the most perfect little piroette and I hear DD hollering at the monster horse to knock it off. Horse stops blows and pins his ears. Pony pins and stomps and charges. Monster backs down and I actually got my hands on his reins by now. Pony flags his tail and trots to the gate like aint no big deal.
              Adoring fan of A Fine Romance
              Originally Posted by alicen:
              What serious breeder would think that a horse at that performance level is push button? Even so, that's still a lot of buttons to push.

              Comment


              • #8
                I've posted this before

                Riding my sweet gentle mare in the warmup at Foxcroft, just minding our own business when I suddenly had the head and neck of a very large stallion on my lap and heard very loud German curses behind me. I slammed my fist as hard as I could on the stallion's nose and he backed off but needless to say my mare was pretty shaken up.

                German rider never apologized, continued on as if nothing had ever happened
                I wasn't always a Smurf
                Penmerryl Sophie RIDSH
                "I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was"
                The ignore list is my friend. It takes 2 to argue.

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Thanks, everyone. I've PM'ed a few of you. Anyone else got a war story??

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Well let's see. It was a big event, had to travel a lot of miles to get there--had technical difficulties along the way which caused so much stress. Bad weather--it was freezing!

                    Anyway, had a stallion who was in tip-top shape. He was amped and probably stressed too plus feeding off of my crappy vibes. We get into the warm-up and proceed with some walk and graduate to a trot. I can feel he is tense but it's going ok. Then some person who was really whip happy comes along and beats the s--t! out of his horse right next to me--my horse loses it. He starts bucking/cantering (running) and I decide to dismount (Pony Club style) but he sorta flung me. Landed in nice soft dirt, bit of whip lash but otherwise fine.

                    The horse proceeds to just race around the arena full gallop and knocked the whole temp. dressage arena down that was JUST put up! I felt bad about that. My friend said that it looked as though the whip-happy person actually made contact with my horse hence his explosive reaction--I kinda have to wonder....

                    Carolprudm---Had a friend that happened to, only the stallion came from behind and wrapped his legs around her.
                    I LOVE my Chickens!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I've never had a bad warm up at a dressage, eventing or horse trial type of show.

                      The worst warm-up incident I've had was at a hunter show when a trainer suddenly flung open the gate into the warm up ring to let his rider in as I was cantering down the rail. My horse did a sliding stop and got his front foot under the gate, panicked as he was backpedalling and threw his head up. The sudden stop had tipped me forward and I caught the force of his neck flying up with my nose, which bled pretty good for a while. The trainer casually said "excuse us" over his shoulder while I slid off and stumbled over to the EMT. I missed it as I was being tended to, but I heard that another trainer (not mine) reamed him out and that several people clapped when she was done.

                      The most chaotic warm-up ring I've ever seen and ridden in personally was at an arabian breed show. There was absolutely everything going on there. The show had all the regular arab classes plus they had arab sporthorse classes (dressage, western, hunt seat, saddleseat...all crammed into a relatively small ring). There was a junior rider on a handful of a stallion, there were people longing, and when I saw a lady driving a horse by the opening, I bailed out of there and decided I'd rather warm up in the parking lot if I had to. I had no idea what the driving lady was intending to do...there was no way she could get her horse in the warmup ring amidst all the chaos but it looked for all the world like that was her intent. I have no idea if it is a breed specific thing because that is the only arab show I've been to, but nobody else seemed the least bit concerned. I should have known something was up when the trainer clipped a walkie talkie on my boot and said, "Here, you'll need this to hear me...I'll be talking to you from over by the in gate." Probably should have been my first clue when the trainer was too smart to go in there on foot!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        This was in equestrian team practice my freshman year of college, a situation very similar to a warm-up ring. It was winter, the horses had cabin fever, and we knew we had too many horses in there for the indoor, so the lower and upper level riders took turns cantering on the rail at the coach's discretion while the opposite group was supposed to stand in the middle of the ring.

                        I (a Walk-Trotter at the time) was cantering on the rail when an upper level girl riding her own horse, an OTTB she'd had for a while, decided to canter him out with us lower level riders since he was acting up and wouldn't stand still.

                        She passes me on the inside and then I see the OTTB's hind foot come flying toward me. The next thing I know, the sound of his shod hoof hitting my kneecap made a crack so loud it echoed, I crumple forward on my horse's neck (still cantering!), pull him up, slide off and collapsed into a heap on the ground. And that's the story of my first equine-related ER visit.

                        TBH, the best part of the whole story was going to the ER with a polo wrap - taken from my horse! - wrapped around my knee. You should've seen the look on the nurse's face.
                        www.cobjockey.com - Eventing the Welsh Cob

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          This didn't happen to me, but I sure was up close and personal to it.
                          I was grooming for my friend at a schooling dressage show. She wasn't a very experienced person and totally put her faith in the fact that everyone in the warm up knew the rule to pass left to left. I have been to enough shows to know better, but anyway...She was cantering her mare on the left rein, just inside the rail and there was another rider coming in the other direction on the rail, also at the canter. My friend assumed that they were going to pass left to left, so she rode onto the rail track and smack into the other horse. She was knocked off, her mare was loose and the other rider was livid. Morale of the story for me was, there are no hard and fast rules in the warm up...keep your head up and eyes peeled.
                          The greatest gift you can ever give is taking their pain away and making it your own. Wear that pain like a tribute to the love you shared. Laurierace

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Warming up for a class last year. Someone with a non-competing horse and their trainer decide to take over 1/3 of the ring with a huge young horse that was terrified of other horses coming near it and the horse would threaten any of us that tried to use the whole ring to do anything for our warm-up. Rider and trainer were terribly rude to any of us that asked them to leave or to be careful with our horses warming up for a BLM class. The ring steward would do nothing and was afraid to confront the trainer because he was so rude about having the right to work wherever they wanted to. So we were told to stay away from them. We were left with a small area where we could safely warm up.

                            Yes I could have gone to the office after the fact and complained, but it was too late at that point to have resolved it for us so we could have all the ring for warm-up.
                            *Every horse is a self-portrait of the rider....Autograph your work with excellence.*
                            Supporting Nokotas www.nokotahorse.org
                            Lipizzan's rock! http://rigitta.blogspot.com/

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              My five year old gelding was the one who could be accused of being rude and disorderly in the warmup ring this summer--though it was embarrassing and frustrating rather than really dangerous.

                              It was his first real summer of showing, aside from our in-house barn shows (where he had been an angel), and he tried every trick he could think of in the warmup: backing up, calling to all and sundry and trying to go out the in gate. He also tried to snake his head, pin his ears and bare his teeth at every horse we passed head-on. At one show, he reared and bucked when they tested the loudspeakers for the freestyle music. He got worse as the warmup went on so generally I would do the minimum: walk him around a bit, do a little trotting and then go do our test. We were only doing Intro, anyway.

                              Once he was inside the arena (I needed someone to lead me in a couple of times), he settled down somewhat, although he was tense, called to the other horses, and kicked out angrily when we halted at X. Needless to say, our scores were not great.

                              The final act was at a big show at the end of summer, with my trainer riding, when he backed all the way across the long diagonal in the very large warmup. Thankfully, it was the first thing in the morning and there was only one other horse in there.

                              We are hoping that, with more mileage, he will calm down a bit this summer!
                              Last edited by Vesper Sparrow; Jan. 25, 2011, 02:11 PM.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I wasn't there, but it happened to my horse.... At a three day event the year before I bought him, my trainer was warming up for her stadium round. Two horses coming toward her, she expected to go to the inside until they split so she had to go between them. That would have been ok, except someone came racing up from behind them full steam, and collided with her head on. My horse stayed up, but the other horse went down. No injury, but needless to say horses and riders were shaken up - and apparently several people managed to tell the other rider it was all her stupid fault. My trainer was too busy trying to get ready, as it was 5 minutes before she went in the ring and now had a quite freaked out horse.

                                Unfortunately, my horse is now not quite so happy about other horses in warmup, so at my first schooling show with him there was a haflinger with a very RUDE rider who cantered up our butts, nearly hit us when she passed, then cut us off about 5 times. My horse decided he would rather chase this horse down with his teeth than listen to me by this point, so despite the fact this woman was riding her horse for an hour AFTER her last class, roughly, we just didn't warm up as well as we should for our class to avoid a huge scene and got out of dodge.
                                Originally posted by Silverbridge
                                If you get anything on your Facebook feed about who is going to the Olympics in 2012 or guessing the outcome of Bush v Gore please start threads about those, too.

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                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by meaty ogre View Post
                                  I have no idea if it is a breed specific thing because that is the only arab show I've been to, but nobody else seemed the least bit concerned.
                                  I think it's a breed thing. I groomed for an Arab/Morgan show barn two years, and those were like three ring circuses. Of course I've never been to a hunter/jumper show. I imagine that the jump warm ups can get pretty hectic, but at least you won't have anyone appearing with a fine harness buggy!
                                  Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Oh I do love the arab show warm ups. Never a dull moment in there! I used to whisper to a lovely mare far too full of herself if she didn't straighten up I'd use her for a buggy horse. She would stand in perfect form and just slouch without the encouragement. Irony would have it she indeed was used for harness and kicked royal butt at it a few years later.
                                    Adoring fan of A Fine Romance
                                    Originally Posted by alicen:
                                    What serious breeder would think that a horse at that performance level is push button? Even so, that's still a lot of buttons to push.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Best pony story ever!!! Love it

                                      Originally posted by leilatigress View Post
                                      DD is warming up before a show on plucky little pony. He takes really good care of his kids and doesn't tolerate other horses endangering his riders. Enter trainer from another barn on 17hh+ monster. It's snorting, blowing, dancing and really light on the front end. I will say that trainer could seriously ride and she was truly trying to get him under control. He decided to try out for the rodeo no one told him he was at and dislodges his rider. He's bucking and squealing and putting on an impressive show meanwhile we have riders vacating the ring like there is a fire. I'm manning the gates which means I cannot get to DD without letting the monster out. Pony is trying to get to us with his short little legs and is just not fast enough and keeps getting blocked. Finally he does the most perfect little piroette and I hear DD hollering at the monster horse to knock it off. Horse stops blows and pins his ears. Pony pins and stomps and charges. Monster backs down and I actually got my hands on his reins by now. Pony flags his tail and trots to the gate like aint no big deal.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by CobJockey View Post
                                        TBH, the best part of the whole story was going to the ER with a polo wrap - taken from my horse! - wrapped around my knee. You should've seen the look on the nurse's face.
                                        I love it when I'm in the ER with a leg wrap/bandage on and they all think that there must have been a nurse, EMT or doc on sight when it happened. Um, nope. Just us horse people who often wrap better than they do! (More practice on a daily basis. )
                                        "And I'm thinking you weren't burdened with an overabundance of schooling." - Capt Reynolds "Firefly"

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