Sunday, April 8, 2012

Golden Gate Arabian Horse Show

Laura on Sebastian and me with Blu on Sunday

Last weekend was spent in Santa Rosa at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds.  The weekend started on Thursday - I got to the fairgrounds about 30 minutes after Todd.  I'd brought my camper and with Laura and Darlene's help found an RV spot right at the end of our barn.  It was perfect.

The barns at the fairgrounds are nice, and at the end of each barn they have a "real" room we were able to use as our tack room.  That meant that we had two groom stalls in addition to the tack room.  It worked out nicely though there weren't any time crunches/scheduling conflicts that made the extra room necessary.  The working arena was across the way from our barn, the covered show arena, called the "Lyttle Cow Palace"  was down a bit further from that.  We were able to lunge the horses in the working arena Thursday afternoon after we were all unpacked.  And Todd worked Blu and Echo and Sebastian (Laura's horses) in the show arena to get them familiar with it.

I'm not sure I ever want to go back there and show though.  The arena has one permanent wall at the end where the announcer's stand and the office are.  If you're standing there looking into the arena you'd be looking down the length of the arena.  On your left is a wall of warehouse type roller doors that can be closed if needed for weather.  It was needed.  The far end is open as is the right side.  The roof is metal so the rain really sounded loud.  And when the wind started it rattled the roller doors and came through the one open doorway creating a mini tornado that blew dirt into everyone's eyes.  Just a truly scary arena.  Ugh.

Blu checking out a pup

Friday was the first day of the show and was all "Sport Horse" classes where Laura showed Echo but Blu wasn't in any classes.  It was nice because the classes ended fairly early in the day, probably 4pm, so we were able to bring the horses back in the show arena to work them when it was over.  I enjoyed my ride on Blu, though.

About 9:30am Saturday

Saturday I was woken up at 5am with the camper blowing in the wind.  Then at 7am when I was heading out to feed the horses the rain started!  Big fat drops.  Argh!  This wasn't looking good.  The rain continued until noon and the only good thing about it was that Blu's first class, Half Arabian Western Pleasure Junior Horse with Todd riding, started about 12:15.  I had Blu covered in a sheet for the walk to the arena and the waiting area is under cover, so once you're at the arena things are dry.

Part of the waiting game - under cover, bundled up against the cold.

There were 5 horses in Blu's first class.  But sadly, Blu wasn't having a great day and he finished 4th.  His second class - Half Arabian Western Pleasure Open with Todd riding - wasn't until 4:45.  Quite a long wait between classes can make it hard on the horses - and riders.  Blu finished out of the ribbons.  It was a bummer, but he was competing against some very nice horses.

And because of the bad conditions I ended up not riding at all because I was concerned about my back.  With the weather as bad as it was, if Blu were to spook, or to slip (the arena was over watered and footing was not good) I didn't want to chance getting hurt again.  So we decided to scratch my two classes.  But I still had lots of fun watching Blu.  And the rain opened up again as soon as we got back to the barn making it an easy decision to go to dinner.  We went to Willie Birds and ate delicious turkey dinners.

Sunday the sun finally shined. Yahoo.  Though it was bitterly cold and the mud was nasty. Ah well.  At least the sun was out.

The Championship classes were Sunday.  Blu got a 4th in the Junior Horse class again.  But the Open class went much better this time around and Blu got a 4th.  I was happy.

Here's a clip from the Open Championship class

Let's hope the Rancho Murieta show has better weather!

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