The Fire Breathing Dragon reared his ugly head today at the Buckeye Pro Rodeo. But thanks to a conversation I had with a fellow barrel racer...The only thing Moon accomplished was wearing himself out digging and churning the dirt and a disgustingly slow time. An 18.5. When I left, a 17.19 was winning it. So that tells you how far out of the money we were.
But, I didn't pull on him ONE. SINGLE. TIME!!!
I don't know how many runs he's going to have to make before he stops freight-training, but if I can just keep riding him like I did today...He's gotta figure it out sometime. Right?
*Freight-training is when a horse gets to running too hard and gets deep in the ground and digs and churns. You can't do much with them, which often leads to freight-training a barrel because they have set in so deep that you can't move them off of it. Moon didn't freight-train any barrels today, but he was so on the muscle and digging in and powering through each stride that he sure didn't clock.
As soon as I felt it, I thought, 'To hell with this, go ahead, I'm just going to focus on keeping you off of the barrels and let you sort this out yourself'....And I let him go. He has built up so much anxiety in his head that I just need to let him run, do what I absolutely have to to keep him off the barrels and see if he can sort this out on his own.
Lord knows I've done everything I can to help him deal with his anxiety issues and will continue to do so, but Moon is not a young or inexperienced horse. I may have contributed to his anxiety issues, but he's pretty good at creating his own mental dilemma as well.
All this time, when he has gotten that on the muscle and wanted to run that hard, I've been the soothing, control freak, who consciously kept him from getting out of control. Not today though. I woke up with a head-cold from hell and I was in no mood to coddle him. My head is pounding, I can't breath through my nose and I am drowning in snot.
It didn't register with him until after the run though that, 'Wait a minute...She just let me go out there and run as stupidly fast and hard as I wanted too and now I'm out of breath and shaking? And she is not putting me away? Wait...I have to lope more and now I have to go around these barrels again? This sucks!'
Yea Moon, it is going to suck to be you until you decide to use your damned brain. There's a barrel race tomorrow night and guess who gets to run again? Heehee