Very exciting news, Kristine Oakhurst a.k.a. Citizen Horse a.k.a. Citizen K won Purina’s Live from Lexington contest. I know, I’m a little late reporting on Road to Rolex. But I’ve been busy.
I am very excited to go to WEG I hope to entertain you and give you the information you are looking for from this International event PLUS lots of video. I thank everyone who supported me, voted, and emailed. I couldn’t have won without you! If there is anything you are particularly interested in me to cover, investigate, OR if you are going to be at WEG email me.
I have been working more hours that I would like, so Frankie hasn’t gotten the attention that he deserves, or needs. I have been riding at least 5 days a week but always trying at 6. He isn’t as fit as I would like him to be and neither am I.
Two problems have arisen since my last post. I contracted Lyme’s Disease and the footing in the ring has been inconsistent but mostly bad.
With those two things, my rides have been shorter 30-40 minutes, and our workouts have been limited to certain areas where the footing is okay. Plus I had to take a full week off between work and feeling absolutely horrible from Lyme’s Disease.
I’m on my last week of antibiotics now and am feeling much, much better. The ring has had more good days recently so I’m hoping things will turn around.
Frankie has been a rock star. Well, except for today.
We haven’t jumped bigger than 4’3″ and really mostly 3’9″ and below. Primarily because I have become rusty with the lack of jumping and Frankie has turned a new leaf which has made him a struggle for me to ride.
Frankie has turned into Mister calm, cool, & collected.
So much so that I need bigger spurs for jumping.
Problem – I need to be able to ride him to the fence softer. I’m so used to Frankie, being Frankie, and making a bid at the fence 2-3 strides out or doing his up and down canter only to shoot over the fences. Since I’m so used to holding him back now I’m screwing up our canter. Since all you need is a good, consistent canter to get a good distance – I keep taking it all away.
I’ve been getting better. But have been jumping Frankie much more. I am jumping him 3-4 days a week. Not over huge jumps and not a ton of jumps. But practice and most importantly repetition is the only thing that is going to make someone a better rider. So I set jumps at about 3’3″ and canter around until I get them right. Then once per week I put them up bigger and do the same thing.
I’d say I’m 60% solid good. Now I’ve just got to get the other 40% down. I always know when I’m doing it, I just have to stop doing it.
Our flatwork has been FABULOUS. Except for today.
We are continuing to work on counter canter, counter bend, some shoulder in, and haunches in. He has been pretty good about my leg. I’ve been riding with spurs everyday, but moved to my hammer heads. These are smaller so I have to work to use them, but sharper so if I do have to go to the spur it’s a little more serious. However, he’s been a little dead to the leg at the canter so I put on bigger spurs today and he could have cared less. Jerk.
Squeeze for the trot – nothing. Really? Grrr. Spur for the trot – head up and nothing. WTF? Grrr…Okay now I gotta smack you with the crop. Then I get this surprised “what, I had no idea, yeah, I’ll trot, or would you rather have a canter?”
Nice Frank. I know, it was just today and we all have off days. But come on Frankie don’t act like you don’t know what I’m asking. His transitions got better, but not great. I’ve been working on the counter canter with a lead change (from the leg NOT the hand) down the long side. He has been good, but today he was a jerk. I would ask for the change and he would sprint forward moving his butt to the inside. He knows better, I think he was just in lala land.
We ended good, he was doing everything I asked. Maybe not great…but he did it.
Okay Frankie. Everyone’s allowed an off day. This was yours for the month Frank.
So what to do now?
I’m going to ride, ride, and ride some more. I have to gear up for my George Morris clinic in November
What I really want to do is Event. I know Frankie is just not an Event horse so that means I need an Event horse – oh yeah – and a Sponsor!
As much as I’m thrilled to be going and writing at WEG – I would much rather be riding! Maybe next time.