He has finally gotten the idea of riding into the contact so I took him for a lesson again with Scott McKenna on Saturday.
Scott agreed that he had improved, and now that he is moving up into the contact more, we need to work on getting the paces a little steadier and more 'horse like' instead of 'pony like'.
We also did some work on the canter, and I was very pleased that Shell Fire 'jumped' into it when asked. This has been a big hurdle as he normally likes to hoon faster in the trot before cantering.
So, things to work on:
- Steadying the paces
- More canter work
- More lateral work (leg yielding etc)
On Sunday 25th April, I took Shell Fire along to a Mini Endurance ride that the Waikato Endurance club kindly put on. It cost $20 to go along their beautiful 8km track. You could ride the 8km track as many times as you liked.
This was Shell Fire's first time around a lot of horses and I had complete faith in him to behave and just act like 'a horse'. He didnt disappoint. He was very well behaved once his brain had taken in the many sights and sounds and was quite happy to stand by the float eating his hay and keeping an eye on things. I went and registered and then tacked up and mounted.
Shell Fire was very keen for the first couple of km. We had some good canters and trots and he is slowly learning to trust me in the saddle rather than on the ground in where I ask him to go. I only rode him around for one 8km loop. That was more than enough for a newly broken in and fairly unfit pony! My main goal of the day was just to see how he coped out in new surroundings with lots of horses and ponies cantering past etc. He really hasnt disappointed me and I cant wait to get him out and about next competition season!