Without a doubt, I am a goals oriented person. Last year, even though I wasn't rodeoing, I did manage to keep after the horses enough to make some progress...This year, not so much. Without any specific 'reason' to ride, I may have put off working horses more often than was warranted. But now that some of the things that kept me so busy and preoccupied...and worn out...have slowed down...I have more time to ride. Aaannnddd...
Well, geez!...I'm having a hard time getting ramped up again. I clean pens, spend time brushing and fly spraying, move em back and forth to turn out and just don't seem to get anyone rode regularly enough to move them forward.
I decided the best way to put a stop to that was to look around and find a few of the bigger Fall barrel races to enter.
I picked out 3 that I wanted to attend. Just found out that the dates for one of those conflict with a friend's bachelorette party though. Part of me is pulling to go to the barrel race anyway...but man, I have missed so many of my friends's important dates; bachelorette parties, weddings, ect., etc....That I wonder why these girls still invite me. So bachelorette party it is. To make up for missing that barrel race, I found another one to go to. LOL
The first one up is in Utah. Only 3 weeks from now. Yikes!! This is the same arena I went to with Frosty last Fall when it rained and rained and rained...And Frosty tried to buck me off in the warm-up pen. LOL. Hopefully the weather is better this year. ;-)
The second race will be in South Dakota the first weekend in October. Man, I haven't run where they are having this race since...2001. OMG!! Fourteen years? Where the heck did the time go?
Third race I picked out is in Las Vegas. Not at the South Point!! For the longest time I so wanted to go to some of those barrel races at the South Point, but now...I dunno. I have heard so many horror stories about horses that got sick, locked barn doors and stolen tack that I'm like...Meh, maybe not. This race is the first weekend in November...and what better way to spend my birthday than at a barrel race...In Las Vegas!!
I will get a chance to get at least a couple runs on Frosty before the first big race, which we desperately need. I'm really hoping he comes back at the 2 seconds off mark. He feels like he wants to go out and make a run, but what his time will be is questionable. I will be taking Moon with to these races, but won't compete on him. Partly because the air quality has not been good and partly because I've got a game plan I'd like to implement to try to help get Moon over some of his gate anxiety, as well as try to get him more focused on going left. Rather than make one competition run, I will work on some exhibitions. Moon only gets his adrenaline pump at competitions and I think he just needs to work through it a few times, without making a competition run. I wasn't the only one affected by how difficult things got for Moon and I in the arena. Switching directions on him was like flipping a light switch for me....But it's going to take some time for Moon to trust that we aren't going in there to 'fight' each other around the pattern.
Of course, I cannot forget about the Fall races in Moab. Two of my favorite races of the year. One is the middle of October and the other is at the end of October. I am kind of hoping that LJ will be ready to crack out by the end of October, but that arena can be a bit overwhelming for a raw beginner. It's a small arena and they are kind of 'running into' something at every barrel; the chutes, the aluminum grandstands, the tractor, and there isn't much stopping room between the eye and the fence, which babies don't really appreciate. Nevertheless, LJ will be going with to all of these events and learning the ropes. In many ways, making the run is the very least of what a horse has to learn about competition life. Unlike Frosty, who was (and can still be) intimidated by all of the activity surrounding an event, LJ finds it incredibly fascinating. Getting and keeping his attention is not easy. Once it all becomes old hat though, the competing part will be easy for him. :-)