Saturday, February 13, 2010

Test Driving a New Horse

So rodeo finals are this weekend for DD and after last weekends ordeal we have been searching for a new rodeo horse for her. Another family that rodeo's in the circuit has a 15 yr old mare for sale so D is test driving her for the weekend. We went out there tonight and she rode her for a little over an hour, she did ok but this mare is a bit stubborn....So we shall see how this works out..

So I thought I would share a few pictures from tonight!

First practice run on the barrels...So I'm thinking with all the new she forgot where her hands should be LOL?!


  1. She'll find the right one, even if it's not the first one.

  2. It isn't an easy job finding the right fit sometimes.... DD is an excellent rider! Have a great weekend.

  3. Her hands are off because I'd bet her confidence is a little off. You'll know it's right when she relaxes and her hands go right =)

  4. Good luck this weekend:) Hope DD has a great time!

  5. Hope the search goes well. Don't rush into anything! I'm thinking it might be hard to match good rodeo horses with younger riders. You don't want anything too young, fresh, and unbroke, yet, if you get into the older broke been-there-done-that horses, they are also typically more burned out and also probably hurting physically from their life of rodeo, which can lead to behavior issues and a general lack of love for the job.
    I will say (and don't take it as any criticism, it's just an observation) I noticed that none of the girls I see in your photos are wearing riding helmets. I think you mentioned it is not required. Therefore, I am assuming it's choice? Is it parent choice or child choice? Because if I was a parent, I'd make my daughter wear one if she wanted to rodeo. She'd probably hate me for it, LOL! ;)

  6. Not a bad looking mare. DD does look uncomfortable. I'm sure she has to be a bit shaken after the last performance. I know you guys want to get through finals, but after that maybe it would be a good time to back off a bit and work on some fundamentals with DD.

    I can understand DD being a bit nervous with the new horse and forgetting to change hands around the barrel. But in the long run, you need to work with her legs and her hands and get her to use them properly. DD is like a lot of youth(and beginning adults) who ride speed events...they get too focused on the speed and lose the finesse. Looking at the pictures of DD riding in the pasture, she rides well in a non-competitive situation. Work on bringing that naturalness to the arena and she will improve by leaps and bounds.

  7. Finding the right horse is never easy, and remember that it can take more than just one or two rides to know if its a fit or not. Also, (at least this is the way I was) sometimes the "perfect" horse is not the best. DD will find a horse she just "clicks" with eventually, and that will make all the difference in world. I remember riding a professionally finished barrel horse in high school and hating it. I ran a better course on an old retired roping horse (with major speed!) that I taught to chase the cans myself!

  8. Jeni~ You are so right on with this...Today she rode "Tigger" around outside the arena for a while before running any events and come time for Barrels her hands were back in there "right" position!

    PG~ LOL, I understand your concern! When she was first riding she rode her helmet for a while. I guess I would have to answer this by saying riding is a part of our lives out here in the country so we don't wear them. For rodeo's yes it is definitely safer to wear one, but we just don't...Not the greatest answer, but an honest one :)

    BEC~ She definitely was uncomfortable on the mare Friday night. She is not used to riding horses that are real finicky about things and this mare kind of is...However today riding her she had a blast! She really is figuring out how to read her and got some great tips from her current owner. She was alot smoother on her ride today. The lady that owns this mare had a chat with D today about her legs and hands. I know you have seen what she is doing with her legs on the video's. This of course is something we have tried to tell her but we don't always get the warmest of acceptance about it LOL! She is very receptive to other people helping her though! So YES she will be off of a full rodeo schedule for a few months and we will be working on the fundamentals! And we WILL get that finesse! You are absolutely right I don't think I have ever thought of it that way but she doesn't have such "leg" issues outside of the arena...Thanks for the tips!!

    Mama H~ I totally know what you mean!! So the mare she is riding this weekend has a better "like" rating today LOL! She actually LOVED riding her today. SO we will see how Sunday goes! But we do have some other horses to look at as well!

  9. I'm horse shopping now, too. And boy, it's a crazy jungle out there. It should be more fun, but it's kind of stressful and dissapointing, don't you think? It's not like buying a new pair of shoes or a car. So much more can go wrong if the hore is not the right 'fit'.
    You know what to do. Be sure to find a horse that your daughter is most comfortable with.

    That's too bad that helmets aren't the norm in your area. I think people just keep doing the same thing because everyone else does, too. Someone has to be brave and step up and be the catalyst for change, because ultimately, if your child gets a brain injury from a horse accident, it's your own family and child that will suffer dearly.

    I've noticed in our area, which is filled with the same mentality of old cowboy style riding, there are more and more folks wearing helmets. Mostly women, but all it takes is a few people bucking the norm, and being brave and showing that it's ok to wear helmets. It's ok to be safe and to protect our kids. Noone should ever look down on anyone else who wears a helmet to protect their brain. Horses are dangerous animals for sure and our children are precious.


  10. it took me 6 months to find jessie. she will find the right one. about the helmet. all of the kids and adults wear helmets in our sport regardless if we are jumping or just trail riding. vanity should never overrule common sense. i have a friend who rode western and scoffed at my advice despite falling off and hitting her head each spring when her horse would buck her off. she is definately hard headed! tee hee! ;~)

  11. I am so glad that DD relaxed and was able to have a good finals on this mare. Enjoy the time looking for the right horse. Seek wisdom from above - then go with your gut. As for the helmet- freedom of choice and freedom to parent as you see fit.