Thanks tb1201. I guess I need to do some soul searching. My current horse is an 18-year-old Appaloosa/trakehner cross, so even in looks he doesn't quite fit in. But I love this horse. He has an awesome jump. Still hard to figure out where we belong.
A whole new bunch of friends!
A whole new bunch of fun!
Wow, I could have written this. Not the judging part but I'm so NOT into showing right now. I only did one A show but realized that it wasn't for me when I saw the 50 gallon drum go from being completely empty to full of needles in less than a week. NOT FOR ME. I didn't want to be any part of that world.
Add me to the list of those blown away by the responses here! How wonderful!
I am having more fun just doing our own thing and not putting a lot of stress on anything than I ever did showing!
I love to horse show - I always have. And I love love a good hunter round. But I understand perfectly what you mean - I make a decent salary myself, but can barely afford the sport. I'm just very fortunate that I happen to live in an area of the country with really high quality schooling shows - otherwise, there is no way I'd get to compete on a regular basis. And I think this kind of thing does our sport a disservice - if horse showing becomes completely inaccessible for 99% of the population - including the upper middle class population - the sport will decline over the long haul. We will also lose a lot of talent that could otherwise have improved it.
I hope those of you that are unhappy with the way the rated shows are going will think about going to more schooling shows and helping your local show managers improve them.
Any thoughts as to why the B and C shows went away? I was out of horses for almost 25 years, so never saw it happen.
I guess the horse world is getting closer every day to 1% (or less) doing all the rated shows.
If I were running rated shows, it would make me very nervous that my customer base was so very small. I know economic fluctuations probably don't do much to these folks, but still as a business, it's really risky. The loss of just a few customers would be devistating.
Almost no one is totally immune to unforseen 'bad luck', be it financial or personal. You NEVER know what life will hold.
In most places a whole year of fox hunting fun, including all kinds of social activities and summer time fun costs the same or less than one week at an A show. I have quite a few friends who made the switch and have never looked back as they have so much more fun hunting!
I agree. If you are just "done" with all types of showing but still want a challenging ride, fox hunting is fantastic.
I, too, loved the B and C shows. The B show circuit when I lived in MI was super competetive, yet not overly expensive. I used to really enjoy those shows. Wish they had them here in TN now.
Thoroughly intimidated, my horse gave me a couple stops and I tried to bow out, politely opining that "I'm so sorry, but I don't think he has the scope for this." Steve looked bored, said, "Oh, let me show you," got on my little guy and took a turn around the ring in a nice loose-rein canter. QH's ears going back and forth a mile a minute. By the time they turned for the grid they were in complete accord. ONE badda TWO badda THREE and higher over each one, and actually got in close to the third with room to spare over that huge spread! Horse looks happy as a clam, Steve grinning smugly says, "He feels just like my QH!" (The one he took to Barcelona).
Well, I practically genuflected and said, "Master, teach me!" :lol: Which he proceeded to do, and "scope" was never an issue again. NEVER NEVER NEVER sell a good horse short!
Posted by SwampYankee:
NEVER NEVER NEVER sell a good horse short!
"Well, I practically genuflected and said, "Master, teach me!" Which he proceeded to do, and "scope" was never an issue again. NEVER NEVER NEVER sell a good horse short!"
I love that.
LOL. I love this story, and I would have been right there with you on the 'Master, Teach me!' comment if it had been me.
And don't sell a good horse short? Well, Rich Fellers showed an appy named Sure Chic in the jumpers and cleaned up against all the TBs in the 70s. And I remember clearly when Gary Striker took his appy Different Drum to the shows for the first time in the 70s. They cleaned up in the jumpers and junior htrs and certainly showed all the naysayers as well. That horse showed successfully well into the late 80s. You don't hear much about 'appys can't jump' around here anymore - at least not for those of us that remember those two!
Swamp Yankee, great story, well told. :)
Okay, now I am going to have to find pictures of those appys. :).
I had shown horses my entire life; since I was six. My parents were very generous in letting me do what I loved, at their expense. They got into it as well: investing in ponies and horses. I loved it but I always felt like my trainer's reputation was based off of how well I did in the ring and it sometimes got pretty cut-throat. I have to admit; I have a pretty stubborn but strong-willed and competetive personality which unfortunately made me fight back sometimes and I just never truly got along with any trainer I worked with. It wasn't fun for me. I'd go to a show (or two!) every weekend at the extreme expense of my parents because the trainer wanted year end awards and the reputation, etc.
Don't get me wrong; we loved to show but as the years went on, we all started to get burnt out. We had no free weekends, winters were spent in 10 degree weather: ringside in an indoor with no feeling in your body, summers were spent in 100 degree sweltering heat in the sun while suffering from heat stroke. For what? a stupid .50 ribbon at the end of the day and your name in lights? Eventualy we cut back on showing because the hectic schedule and stress was taking away from the fun that it was supposed to be. We built our own barn and moved the horses out of the boarding barn at the same time. The trainer travelled to us but that quickly ended as we were only showing twice a month (and still doing extremely well!) and were on our own more and more.
I was sick of the politics, the pressure, the money, the frequent lecturings from the trainer when I came out of the ring after busting my ass all summer and didn't quite have the trip I expected to get that stupid ribbon for her reputation. The Horse show world was becomming a cut throat, political bunch of scum bags, prissy kids, wealthy parents, overpriced equines, overpriced show fees, and one large fashion statement. It wasn't fun. I last showed 7 years ago at a National Show. I did well and decided that I was going to go on to new things. I don't miss it. I rarely ride anymore but I still do hunter paces and cross-country schooling, etc. I do things that make it fun for me. I used to be that bubbly horse-crazy kid who loved to go to the barn and jump on anything someone handed me. It's sad to think the rediculous horse-show world probably actually killed that for me, unfortunately. Now; I enjoy taking care of them more than I enjoy riding.
I hope you enjoy your new-found adventure. You're not the only one who feels/have felt this way. Best of luck!