What it feels like to me is that when I ask Moon to give me his nose and rate for the turn, he just thrusts his shoulder into the turn. I KNOW it's because of something I am either doing or not doing.
Thank goodness one of my friends met me at the gate and said, 'I know you didn't mean to do that, but it was almost an awesome run.' (I'm thinking...Of course I do not mean to do that...)
I told her, 'I just cannot seem to get his nose to come before his shoulder. I thought using the new bit I got would help, but I'm doing something to cause this and I am at a loss of what to do with my hands to help my horse.'
She said, 'Yea, it might help if you didn't start checking him at the halfway point.'
I'm like, 'What? Seriously, I started checking him way back there?'
She's like, 'Yea. You checked him 3 times before you even got to to the barrel and I could see him squatting for you every time, so by the time you get to the barrel, he has no momentum left and just dives into it.'
Well, good, freaking, night! No wonder the poor horse is doing what he is doing.
I had absolutely NO IDEA I was even checking him.
I'm guessing that is the reason I can make nice runs in smaller arenas but when we get into the big patterns, I start having problems. I'm not even going to lie...Moon's speed is a little intimidating when he gets room to unwind. I keep telling myself to ride him forward into his pockets and I can on 1st and 3rd. I guess we have just had so many problems with 2nd that I can't shake the 'oh crap' feeling I get when he is really rolling toward 2nd.
Oh well, it wasn't a disastrous run. We didn't knock a barrel and I got some good insight from a second pair of eyes from someone I trust knows what she is seeing. We placed 7th in the 3D...no money, but there were 8 of us packed in the 3D with times ranging from 19.3 to 19.48. Our time was a 19.46. In spite of our problem at 2nd, Moon felt like he was running free and easy and at a comfortable speed for him. Not nearly as fast as he can run...which is fine with me. If I can't ride him when he is running a 3D time, I can't even imagine the mess it would be if I actually asked him to really run. He wasn't even blowing after his run...so I know he wasn't even trying (He's not in that good of shape).
On a funnier note...I took Frosty with to keep getting him used to being ridden around activity. He had quite the hump in his back when I saddled him, so I left him tied to the trailer until the barrel race was over and then headed to the arena. Frosty was really looky-looing, but was moving out nicely. I bumped him into a long trot. The second time around the arena, he noticed the open gate and tried to head that way. I pulled him around and bumped him with my spur. He stuck his nose in the dirt and started making these ridiculous high-pitched little squeals. I pulled his head up and kicked him forward. This time, he really bogged his head, bucked in one spot and kept making those ridiculous high-pitched squeals. I was trying not to laugh, because seriously...if Frosty wants to buck me off...he CAN. I was really hoping he wasn't going to go there. I finally got his head pulled up, but he kept hogging around, not wanting to move in any direction but the open gate....and squealing. Talk about a temper tantrum! LMAO
I finally got him lined out and when I came around the end of the arena again, there was like 10 people standing there watching us. One guy says, 'You all right?' I just laughed and told him, 'Yea, I think he got over his pig imitation.' Thankfully, that was the end of Frosty's antics. I didn't get him rode down like I wanted because it got dark on us, but he did pretty good. I'm going to start hauling him with me everywhere and taking the time to ride him. As much as I like the black horse, I don't think he has the kind of speed I'm looking for. Frosty is really learning to stretch out and the power just oozes from him. Hopefully, I learn how to ride a fast barrel horse one of these days. ;-)