Monday, December 21, 2009

The Adventure Continues..........Rhet's Big Day.......

The Adventure Begins

In the past when I've shown Rhet I've always been the one to get the horse ready. Putting a show halter on the colt has been a challenge. so when Richie decided he'd be the one to get the colt ready for his national championship class, it was fine with me.

I warned Richie about Rhet's past behavior but he didn't seemed to be concerned. Rhet wasn't living up to his normal reputation anyway so chances were the colt would be good. He'd certainly behaved himself for me to bathe him. I'd managed to do that all by myself in a wash rack filled with horses. There was a time not long ago when that wouldn't have been possible. That bath in a private cubicle at Region 5 had been quite a trip. It was a good thing I had Dan there to help me.

Richie took Rhet into the ready room and worked on him like he was any other horse. He got the colt all slicked up with make-up while he was still wearing his stable halter.....something I'd never been able to do before. I had to be able to grab the colt's nose to get the darn show halter on over his poll. I think I held my breath as Richie reached to put the show halter in place but Rhet just stood there like an old pro. I couldn't believe this was really the same horse.

Since there were thirty-one colts entered in the class and the horses showed one at a time in the ring, the paddock announcer called the horses up in sections. That way they didn't have all thirty-one horses milling around out there waiting their turn to show.

Once the colt was ready, Richie took him up to the grooming stalls at R O Lervick Arabians. They were in the barn right next to the Pavilion where Rhet's class was being held. Since Rhet was to be the fifteenth horse to be shown, the plan was to hang out at Lervick's until it was closer to his turn. That way the horse could relax and not loose all his pizazz before he ever hit the ring.

With Richie taking total control over Rhet, I went ahead into the pavilion and watched the class. I wanted to see what the colts at this level all looked like to know how my colt fit.

At nationals for halter and the working horse classes there are five judges. However, the scores from the high judge and the low judge are thrown out and the horse is given the score of the total for the three remaining judges.

I had watched a few halter classes trying to get a feel for how the judges were calling things. Can't say that it really made any sense to me. The numbers seemed to be all over the place. I couldn't figure out what type of horse was getting a paticular score or if there was a type of horse they liked. I couldn't even figure out which judge might be the high or low for a particular horse. It would be interesting to see how things went in this colt's class.

With Jesse's lack of success up to now, I figured I'd be real lucky if we squeaked in and received a top ten. I already knew there was at least one judge in the ring that didn't think much of me or my horse. I just didn't know if or how that would reflect in the scores.

As I made my way up to the front doors of the pavilion my stomach was doing some pretty fancy flips. I wasn't sure if I should try to find a seat or head for the ladies room. Hearing the announcer call for the first horse, I took a chance making my way to the stands.

I didn't see anyone I knew so I found a spot I thought would give me a good angle to view all of these colts. I was really hoping to get a look at each horse to see how it measured up to my colt.

I don't know what the size of the Pavilion arena is..........but it's small. It can get pretty crowded in a riding class but it's nice and cozy for halter. Each horse is trotted in to a marker about two-thirds of the way down the rail. Then the horse is walked across the arena and a short ways down the other side before walking up to the judge. After the stand-up in the middle, the horse is trotted straight back out the gate it previously entered through.

Normally even thinking about trotting two-thirds of the way down the rail of an arena is enough to make my asthma kicked up. The size of this arena, however, make it look to me like I could actually handle that assignment. Of course, that was easy to say as I sat on the rail. I don't know how the trainers felt about the distance.

Some people think being towards the front of a class that is judged off individual numbers is a distinct disadvantage. I watched closely as the scores for the first few colts came up to see if that theory might hold water.
Even those early scores seemed to be higher than what I'd seen given at the regional level. Then when the scores of a couple of those early horses hit the 350's, I began to get even more nervous. Would the judges continue with these kinds of numbers.............or would Rhet score the same kind of numbers he'd scored at the regional shows..........only time would tell.

To be continued...............

Rhet Shows

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  1. Oh my, I've been anxiously awaiting this retelling for a while now!

    Come on, come on!

    Go Rhett Go!!!

  2. I have absolutely no idea houw Rhett did at Nationals, but I'm sitting on the edge of my seat eager to find out!

  3. Geez MiKael I keep thinking if I miss a few days and then catch up you wont catch me with a cliff hanger!!!!! No such luck!!!

    Hope u r doing okay with the weather. I got stuck coming in my drive today had to park my little truck half way down the lane and walk up the hill to the house!!! Snowing again but expecting freezing rain tonight.

  4. *biting my fingernails* *sitting on the edge of my seat*

    What happens next?

    I'll tune in next time!