Brad agreed to go to five shows, adding a new one this season. At the last minute, they ended up pulling out of the very first show. Cierra has developed allergies and needed medicine. AQHA shows do random drug testing, and give penalties for positive results to both owner & trainer. They decided it wasn't fair to Cierra, and didn't want to take the associated risk. They ended up attending four shows after all.
|new venue (to us) was the |
|record hot humid temps made for a very small show|
our grands came to watch Brad anyways
The first couple shows Brad placed near the end of his classes. His trainer didn't do a whole lot better. I guess there were positive things happening that they achieved. I would be remiss if I didn't say after endless years of non-stop training, it's hard to watch the same struggles in the same areas. Let me make one thing clear, it's not remotely related to winning. It's about what I see, and inevitably hear. With all that *not* being said, Brad continues to be happy with his choices and that is all that matters.
I wish he would bring sweet Cierra home, to be a horse. She deserves it, and then some. I believe she needs to rejoin her family and breath fresh air on a regular basis. Of course that means he would need to buy another show horse. Sigh. It is completely his decision on when to "retire" her, and no doubt a hard one. If only we had a riding arena, Cierra could benefit from a change over the winter. I am supportive, really I am. I'm more then thrilled Brad is living his dream!! I even slap a smile on and attend all his shows. See :)))))
Another difference this show season is that Brad is no longer showing Cierra in Ranch Conformation. For a couple reasons. It is always the last class making the shows excruciatingly long, and she is older now. Conformation is a young horses class.
|Tank (7 months) at Brad's third show|
AQHA Ranch Riding continues to evolve as a discipline in the Midwest. Class numbers have increased, judges are more familiar with requirements and patterns have become more difficult. Especially Ranch Trail. Sadly Youth Ranch classes continue to have little to no entries. A sign of the future. The young gal that showed with us went in Open, instead of being the only one in Youth. You have to be 18 to show in Amateur.
Brads show season typically ends with a four day State Show on Labor Day weekend. The venue is closer to us, so I was able to leave Tank at home. Brad practiced and waited alllll day to show, into the evening. Waiting for endless hours is sooooo boring!! I felt so bad for Brad when he scratched, just before getting called up on deck. Cierras allergies suddenly flared up. It was extremely dusty, a lot of horses were coughing. Something to do with the shavings. Brad loves his horse, and made the only right decision. They loaded the two horses earlier then planned, and took them back to the barn between Ranch show days. Thankfully Cierra improved enough to show the last day. Brad & Cierra had nice rides, and ended the show season with positive rides.
If you are interested, below are video clips from his last rides at the State Show. Ranch Trail is first (2:40 min) For reference, three judges placed him 3rd, 4th, and 5th out of 12. The second video is Ranch Riding (1:40 min) he got 2nd and two 4ths, out of 15 entries.
Happy that Brad was able to put things together and feel good about their rides!! They practice weekly (year round) and he really loves his beautiful girl. I love watching them together, they make a good team!