Not-As-Needy Acres

tales from the heartland


Population 693, Nebraska, Middle America
December 28
C.O.B. (Crabby Old Bag)
Scientist, wife, mother, slave to the furry beasts that own the house where I live.


Bluesurly's Links

MAY 15, 2009 4:38PM

The Worst-Behaved Horses on the Fairgrounds

Rate: 15 Flag


The following was a story I posted to a re-trained throroughbred group last summer.  Since I haven’t had much time for writing or posting to OS lately, I thought I’d throw this up for your amusement.  FYI – Go Lite is my off-the-track throroughbred (OTTB) gelding, Pumpkin is a grade mare with an attitude – enjoy!





    Go Lite looking sharp. 


In the name of Chicken Riders everywhere, after a hiatus of 15 years, I rode in a horse show last Saturday!  It was just a schooling show sponsored by one of the local 4H clubs which are predominantly Western with some Wenglish* thrown in for grins.  I planned on showing Go Lite (his first show since being off the track 2 years ago) in English Pleasure, English Equitation, Walk-Trot, and the Egg Marathon (what was I thinking with that one?) and showing Pumpkin in the Trail Class – she mainly came along as company for Go Lite – BIG MISTAKE!


Pumpkin on the left - don't let that cute face deceive you... 



They loaded into the trailer much better than I thought they would, and we made it to the fair-grounds in time to get tacked up and warmed up a little.  The fun began as soon as I tried riding Go Lite away from Pumpkin – then the screaming began (on their parts, not mine).  Go Lite proceeded to do everything in his power to verify the OTTB stereotype – we pranced, we danced, we screamed – but at least he didn’t try to run off. 



Crazy race-horse!

OMG – inanimate objects are moving!


He was unafraid of the announcer’s booth, but the lawn chairs outside of the rail were terrifying!  Sigh. 



He really can behave when he wants to!



Needless to say, out of 8 riders, we didn’t place in either Pleasure or Equitation – but at least my horse didn’t try to lay down in the ring like the App that got second place in Pleasure…the judge turned around as she (the horse) was getting up but placed her anyway – pretty bad.



 Pick me!  Pick me!


Equitation was traumatic due to MORE INNANIMATE OBJECTS!!! Yes, the dreaded road cones!!!  After that, I decided to scratch from W-T (and EM) and warm up Pumpkin for Trail. Now the roles were reversed, and Pumpkin started screaming for Go Lite.  Then my dear husband - after being warned repeatedly DO NOT TIE GO LITE TO THE TRAILER!!! - does just that, so off gallops my OTTB towards the county golf course.  Thank goodness my horses were so herd-bound because Go Lite immediately started to follow Pumpkin back to the trailer.  Glare at husband, make sure he has lead rope in hand, and off we went to the Trail class. 


This was also Pumpkin’s first horse show ever (she’s around 24), and she managed to do more than half of the tests including the bridge, trotting poles, trotting a zig-zag around road-cones, side-passing to and opening the mail-box (prior to sticking her nose into it and looking for treats).  No way was the ground-tie going to work with her boyfriend carrying on in the distance. 


So to try and put a good, positive spin on things:  1 - I went, 2 - I wasn’t the one who was driven off in an ambulance (that ended up not being horse-related – although one of my friends who came to watch the show immediately worried IT WAS ME…), 3 - we weren’t excused from any classes! 


Since Sunday, my happy campers have been going into separate paddocks.  There was virtually no screaming yesterday!  We’ll see how the trend continues – and they won’t be going to any more shows together!!!!!   


Thanks for listening,

Bluesurly & the Worst-Behaved Horses on the Fairgrounds



The end.



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Looking sharp, indeed. (And nice rump).
C., What a butt! I think you did GREAT at that horse show. Half of it is just getting to the show in one piece. It's amazing that you got both of them to go into the ring. At my first horse show in 1991 or 2, the girl ahead of me, Katelyn, refused to enter the ring, then my horse Dandy, a thoroughbred off the track threw up his head and ran away with me while I held on for dear life, arms and legs flailing. He stopped with a bunch of other horses at a fence. I got off. Whew.

And they say people ride horses for fun!!! I kept telling my husband "we don't do this for's work!" He never believed me. (Of course it's fun/satisfying/spiritual, too.)
worst behaved horses on the fairgrounds or not, or whether you placed in Equitation(!) or not, you have some beautiful horses, and it sounds like you had some fun with 'em.
Steve and Carol - I assume you are commenting on Go Lite's butt, but I'll take the compliment as well!!!

I will admit, this was probably the first show I'd been to where I didn't turn into a basket case even with the horse bouncing around. The goal really was to get him out and about, and we met that goal.

Nan- all of my horses are "rejects" - Go Lite was too slow and getting "old" (he's 11), Pumpkin was abused and headed to the meat market. We have another old gal at home who was literally being starved - I'll post about her soon. Glad you've given me a good grade on my horse care!!! That really means more to me than you will even know.
made me smile :)
But they are so wonderful anyway! i love horses. I so miss having one. It's been ... damn ... 10 years since I rode. That's not right.
oh i love this and you and your horses are adorable. god, what a mess. i love love love your positive spin on this!!! i've had to learn to redefine success for myself and that is jsut what you did here: you went, you didn't... that is great. i'm in awe of anyone who can stay on a horse. long story for another time. love love love and gratitude for a lovely aspect of your life!!
Sounds like a typical day with horses. I love them and grew up riding and showing. Yours are gorgeous and I am sure spoiled. Hope you keep having fun with them.
rated for horsing around
Congrats on all surviving the show with no injuries or major traumas. That was a big test. You've got two beauties there.

The OTTB skittishness brought back some memories for me. My grandmother had a mare (Vicky) who was retired from the track at age 6 after winning a couple of races, and placing and showing in a few. She could really run when she wanted to.

After several years of riding lessons, I was occasionally allowed to ride the wild beast out in the farm fields. One day my mother wasn't fully trusting my 10-year-old body and skills with the beast and was intending to just lead her with me in the saddle. For some reason known only to Vicky, she decided to show her most theatrical self.

The horse spooked and reared up. I hung on. When she came down, one of her hooves hit Mom's left hand hard, dislocating her ring finger. Mom screamed in pain and let go of the reins. Vicky bolted across the field, galloping hard, reins flapping out of my reach. My only good option for hanging on was my legs and her mane. Fortunately she knew that field very well and didn't step in a hole. And I was used to riding challenging horses.

I got the wildest ride of my life, at a time when I fantasized about being a jockey, if only I would stop growing at my 10-year-old size. (BTW, that sure didn't happen.) Eventually she slowed down, and I was able to grab the reins, then get back to the chaos that was happening by the barn. Mom was crying and screaming, her finger hanging at a weird angle. I rode the horse over to Gramma, who put her away in the barn.

We all went to the nearest ER, where they had to cut off her wedding ring before pulling her finger back into place. And I thought that first scream was a big one. Wow! A little too much excitement for one day.

I later had some good rides on Vicky, but none quite as exciting and scary as that one. That was the fastest I've ever gone on a horse - by a lot.
Yes, the horses are all extremely spoiled! My most peaceful time in the day (once I haul my ass out of bed) is being in the barn feeding them breakfast and them watching them bounce around once I turn them out. Bliss.

Bike - being run away with is my worst fear. I'd much rather get dumped than be out of control! You were on tough kid!
I love horses! Thanks for sharing yours...and your horse show day.
Beautiful horses. It's hard to image that they are "rejects". It's wonderful that you saved them, but it sounds like they reward you with joy.
Fun post. Beautiful animals. You're a lucky lady.
I rode lots of nutty horses when I was a kid. Back in the day, when I was riding regularly, they never tossed me, even when they decided to play bucking bronco. My legs got tough quick. Scared the crap out of Mom, but just the incidents she knew about. ;)
Both of them are beautiful, and obviously well-loved. I very much sympathize with scary inanimate objects -- His Klutziness has decided that in addition to barrels, trash cans are suspect. Good for you for getting out there and trying!
It's that time of year again!! Will you be ready for another try on June 6?? I'm game to get spotty butt out there if you'll bring the crazed OTTB!! ;-)
Hey! Road cones are scary. And some lawn chairs are, too!
LOL...all of us who have shown horses have been in your situation. Fun post.