She was awesome! We arrived at the show early enough I was able to take her in to the show ring before things got started. I figured the judges table would be the most scary thing so I took her straight towards that. She was gawking at the table when a couple other horses came into the ring. She turned around to check them out and knocked in to the table, causing it to fall on the ground. The table was promptly picked back up and Emi returned her attention to it. The show organizer commented that she had a good brain as she recovered from the episode with in 20 seconds and was eating carrots off the table with out hesitation.
After 5 minutes touring the arena we headed to the warm up arena to find our barn mate. Several horses were worked up about some farm animals next door...a llama, mini-horses, and a goat. I kept Emi away from the snorting horses but once they moved on I took her to that end of the arena. She hardly even took a look. While I was walking her, a horse got loose and came running towards the warm up arena. It was on the barn driveway and heading towards the road. I took off running with Emi trotting behind me, hoping to head it off before it got on the road. We did make it and the horse turned into the warm up arena where it was caught.
After that we headed back up to the trailer to get Emi tacked up. When we got back to the warm up arena it was empty so I opted to hand walk Emi for a little bit before getting on. It wasn't long before we were joined by some other horses. Emi was being fine before I got on her but she definitely settled more as I put her to work. I was expecting her to be backed off but she wasn't bad at all. We trucked around the warm up arena before heading to the show ring.
They were running a bit early at this point due to a scratch so we got a few extra minutes in the show ring before starting our test. It was perfect for Emi to have another chance to look around. She was fabulous for her test! Forward and obedient. We are beginning to get moments of connection and I can't wait until that's our "normal." As we neared the judges table, a piece of paper blew off of it into the ring. Emi gave it a sideways glance but didn't really care. They offered to let me start over but I told them we were okay and continued on our way. I was really thrilled with how well she did. She's green but she's also really game. We finished with a 68.75%. The comments on our score sheet were "Lovely mare! Excellent rider=Awesome! Keep up the nice work."
With 20 minutes to go I put her bridle back on and headed back down to "warm up." A few minutes of trotting and we were set. With 10 minutes to go Emi stood quietly while I talked to another competitor and then went back into the ring like it was no big deal. The test went well and we received a 70%. Final comments were "Work on bending and a little more suppleness. In time this one will be taking you places!" For both tests I got an 8 for position and effectiveness and Emi got all 7's except for one 6.5 (for submission). Our scores were good enough for first place in both classes and were a lovely surprise. I do think the scores were a bit generous but I'll take it!
I feel so good about having such a positive first dressage show experience. Today was ride #32 and I feel like if she can be that good with that little time under saddle she really should be amazing after a winter of practice. I'm so fortunate to have her and I'm really pleased with how well she's coming along. I'll share video once it's uploaded if any of you are interested in watching the wonderful world of Intro A & B.