Monday, August 8, 2016

Gogo goes going gone

So what I really wanted to do with this post's title was something along the lines of "Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo." But. Idk, guess my well of literary genius has runneth dry lol.

pony playing coy
Regardless, the whole point here is: another day, another lesson at OF, and another new face. And it's another chestnut!! Apparently, aside from my brief (tho intense) fling with Bali the Bay, I'm pegged as a chestnut kinda gal.

i <3 full sized horses
This week's lesson mate is Gogo, a chromey ~10yr old ottb who I believe has also done some timber racing. He was a real treat too - as he's not actually a lesson horse at OF, rather he's privately owned. But trainer P worked her magic to get me the opportunity to ride him. Apparently she got the idea while I was riding Wick a couple weeks ago?

sunburnt noses need love too!
Gogo was a real sweetie too - super laid back in your pocket type. He has some very legit schooling under his belt too, so I was eager to hop on for a try.

still cute despite the smudged mirror
Alas, OF was planning for the recognized event the following day and we were therefore relegated to the tiny indoor. In years past, they have run stadium out in a grass field, leaving our lesson arena untouched. But I guess this year is different. Womp womp.

cute brown blur!
It was fine tho. I basically had the lesson to myself - only sharing the arena with the tiniest of little ponies (seriously - if you only watch the video for one reason, let it be because you want to see that tiny freakin adorable little Shetland!).

one day when i can ride more than 1-2x per week hopefully my position will improve? maybe?
For various reasons, Gogo has been more or less out of work for about three months, and is a touch out of shape. So we kept things easy enough for him. The flat work was really interesting to me. He feels like a type of ride that I understand and can work with, but he didn't give anything away for free.

big horse doesn't have much compression lol
The biggest priority with him is getting him FORWARD. He was pretty good off my legs, but would kinda peter out if I wasn't vigilant. Plus, I noticed that if he wasn't really moving forward from his hind end we'd get some pretty noticeable head wagging.

no problem just cantering over the fences instead of jumping tho!
The canter was interesting too as he's lacking some strength behind and struggles to sit or tuck his hind end up under himself. So there's a certain degree of fishtailing. And when he gets unbalanced he sometimes gets a little bolt-y. But again - the answer there was forward. More forward. Always.

"wheeee run go fast!" - Gogo
The jumping stayed super simple, due to being in the indoor. And it being balls hot. And the horse being unfit. Ya know. Lots of little details. It was enlightening tho. We just worked on trainer P's favorite exercise: one stride grids.

And let me tell ya: this horse is a very straight forward ride. I know I always said that Isabel was not complicated... And, well. She isn't. But just bc the answer is known doesn't mean it's easy to get to. Whereas with Gogo, it felt a little more attainable. Horsie jumps the jumps!

(try not to die of cuteness at that teensy tiny pony!)

Big key here was staying soft with my hands and supportive with my legs. Nothing groundbreaking there. The grid was kinda tricky bc Gogo is kinda derpy and doesn't do much in the way of adjusting, since he basically doesn't pay attention to small fences... Given that the fences were set at 18" distances... well, it occasionally felt a little awkward.

hacks out like a champ tho
We got a couple nice shots through tho, and a few more, uh, educational as well. The oxer grew to 3' and honestly the horse was still just loping over it. My position was a straight up shambles bc I am so used to Isabel's round, back-cracking jump - and Gogo basically gave these fences zero effort.

novice bending line - looks like fun!
That had the beneficial effect of making the jumps feel tiny and totally inconsequential to me too - always a welcome feeling (as opposed to cold sweats and trepidation over a 2' fence lol, something I'm keenly familiar with...).

b element from the bending line. i've jumped the a before, but not this b
All the same tho, I was sorry to not try actual coursework with Gogo. Somehow I suspect he's a different kind of ride in wider open spaces going through full courses, rather than the stop-and-start of grids in the small indoor.

sweet pony was very ready to be done lol
So I've got my fingers crossed to be able to give him another try soon. OF usually keeps the course set up for a while after the recognized event - and of course there are semi-permanent jumps out there too. Perhaps our lessons will take us out xc sometime soon?

freshly renovated water and banks complex
Anyway tho, after we finished the ride, trainer P encouraged us to hack out around the cross country field. Which, obviously we had to do. They've worked hard to refurbish a lot of existing jumps, and replaced or updated a full 50% of what was out there.

new trakehners and hanging logs!
And obviously it was very interesting to see how different the jumps (many of which I've tackled previously with Isabel) looked from tall Gogo's back. Verdict? It all looked quite enticing!

happy horses hacking out
Plus it was cool to just get him out of the ring and see how he behaved. I like to know the horses I ride entirely - even if I only ever ride them once. I like to know if they spook, or if they enjoy hacking out. Whether they can lead or if they are herd bound.

gosh i just love full sized horses
Gogo turned out to be quite the pleasant hack horse too. He had one spook (near some woods and he basically just took a couple sideways steps then stopped) but otherwise was fine on the buckle. He is just *super* laid back.

cute ponies!
It was kinda adorable too - my lesson mate was on Noel, and it turns out Noel and Gogo belong to the same family. Kinda funny how that works out lol. I really have liked both of these horses tho so perhaps that family is onto something!

very handsome :)
So even tho it's kinda frustrating to feel like I'm "restarting" in some ways with every new ride on a different horse, I'm really enjoying the experience and variety. And Gogo in particular felt like a type of ride right up my alley - but still feeling like he has plenty to teach me. Fingers crossed I'll get another opportunity!!

46 comments:

  1. What a cool horse he is! I'm so excited that you are getting the opportunity to ride different horses. It is also SO hard to go from a little horse who jumps big and round over everything to a big horse that jumps flat! I always feel like a moron trying to find my position. Here's hoping for another ride on Gogo soon!

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    1. that flat jump is really a very different feeling - but not totally unwelcome!

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    1. definitely! i'm eager to try him in a more open space

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  3. He is adorable! Sounds like a fun guy! Also, teeeeeeny pony needs to come live here!!!

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    1. omg that teeny pony is too freakin cute. this farm has the best ponies!

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  4. Gogo is very cute and looks like a fun ride :)

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  5. Riding different horses makes you such a better rider... although I totally understand (and prefer!) to have one steady mount :) Gogo is adorable!

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    1. i've basically only ever ridden a variety of horses - isabel being the one (not insignificant) exception these past couple years. it's fun!

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  6. omg I like him A LOT. Not for sale, though? Always fun to puzzle out somebody new!

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    1. he's pretty cute! i don't know much about his situation with the owners (in fact i don't even really know the owners) but am grateful they let me ride him!

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  7. Wow that does look like a great place to go back around. And I love gogo's super cute face!😍😀 Hope to hear more stories about him.

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    1. this farm is so fun - it's basically where i've learned to event and go cross country. hoping to get out there soon!!

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  8. um i adore him. hes gorgeous. also i think you learn more from riding a ton of different horses than one horse all the time. seems frustrating right now but you'll love it later!

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    1. ha don't misunderstand - i LOVE riding a variety of horses and always have. just in this past month i've gotten to enjoy a pretty interesting group haha. doesn't make for the easiest competition planning but eh... i'll figure it out

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  9. He sounds like a great ride!

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    1. definitely! we'll see how he is outside!

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  10. Trying all sorts of horses is the best way to learn what works best with you! Glad you had a fun ride!!

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  11. Such a handsome chappie, loving the chrome 😍

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  12. Ride all the horses! Jump all the jumps! (Gogo looks like a fun ride, and that tiny pony is adorable)

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    1. alllll of the horses and alllll of the jumps!!!! :D

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  13. Wow he's cute. You look good on him! I hope you get to ride him some more :)

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  14. Aw, he looks like a very cute and very sweet horse!

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    1. i seriously could not get over how sweet he is!

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  15. Sounds like a fun lesson and the xc course looks so fun.

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    1. i love the xc course there - we have had some of our best rides ever out there! hopefully we'll be out again soon :)

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    1. redheads 4 lyfe lol. and he is basically sugary sweet - such a friendly guy!

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  17. I love that big jumps look a little less scary from the back of a big horse. Big horses for life yo!

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    1. seriously! a flatter jump helps too - but even with the flat-as-a-pancake jumper pony noel, i still felt little fluttery heart palpitations while jumping. on wick or gogo, tho? totally smooth sailing. i needs me a full sized horse!!

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  18. He's so handsome!!! Love the chrome! Hopefully I can see you guys ride together soon!

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  19. Catch rides do such a good job of expanding your riding skills, totally jealous of all of your opportunities lately! It's been many a year since I had that kind of opportunity. He is cute!

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    1. definitely agree! tho i'm not sure this counts as a 'catch ride' bc it's a paid lesson. i got access to this particular horse bc my trainer knows me and knows the owner, but generally anybody who signs up for a lesson at a riding program can have the same opportunity!

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  20. I love him. I'm such a sucker for a chestnut with a kind face and a big white blaze :) Glad you had a good ride!

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    1. thanks!! i was happy to get the chance to play around with him, even if we got stuck in the indoor ;)

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  21. He is so gorgeous!! I'm not a chestnut person at all, but I'm kind of wanting him. He sounds like such a fun ride!!
    Hopefully you two will be seeing more of each other!

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  22. I'd def look into his status because I'm an enabler and LOVE him! But I still love Izzy :)

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  23. What a handsome boy! Glad you had a good ride.

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  24. He is very handsome, that is for sure! I had to google timber racing, and what a cool looking sport!

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