Today (Tuesday) we had a nice rest day after a super successful first show here in San Juan Capistrano! The boys were excellent over the weekend for where they're at; Victor made a very successful debut at Intermediare II and Grand Prix, scoring in the mid to upper 60s in all three of his tests. I was thrilled to have such a strong showing in his debut at the top level! Majek also had a good debut in the new Intermediare A and B tests, and although he had some issues with his piaffe (which is a known problem, so no surprise there), he showed some great work in the other elements of the tests and scored consistently 62% throughout the weekend.
R Cessna started with solid but conservative tests at second level, scoring in the mid 60s. As the weekend progressed I upped the expectations and degree of expression in my tests and we finished the show with two solid near 70% rides (one in front of FEI "O" judge Stephen Clarke). I've been very happy with how well he's handling the atmosphere down here and how good his focus has been. Betsy and Gentleman had several rides that scored in the mid 60s, but some tension and spooking interfered with her other rides. By the end of the weekend she had a better handle on how to ride Gentleman through his spooking and finished with a well-ridden (if not easy) test that scored 64%.
Today I dropped Lana off at the airport and picked up Paula, my substitute groom while Lana is away in France. Afterwards we explored downtown San Juan Capistrano, which was interesting despite being grey and drizzly. After lunch and a nap I did the extra exciting chore of doing laundry. We've also taken the boys for walks throughout the day, and they've been quite spicy since all the hunter/jumper riders have been arriving and the show grounds have gotten significantly more busy!
Tomorrow I will take a couple lessons from Leslie on the boys and hopefully we can get a handle on some of the issues from the weekend's competition. I'd specifically like to get some ideas on how to improve Majek's piaffe and Victor's pirouettes, in addition to the usual suppleness and throughness problems both horses have. The next show starts Friday, so we have a couple of schooling days to prepare. I'm hoping to be able to watch more of the competition next weekend, as last weekend I was a little nervous about debuting these new tests (and trying to get them memorized!!) to watch much.