I am absolutely thrilled, so happy and proud of my horse!! This past weekend was the big Friesian show held at the Topsfield Fairgrounds in Topsfield, MA. Every year they have an Open Freestyle class that gives you 3 minutes to perform in anyway you choose. A few years ago I saw this class in the prizelist someone gave me and thought that would be the perfect class for me! A chance to do a freestyle in costume at such a nice venue. This past year I have been training Douwe to perform with the Wings of Isis for the purpose of preparing for this show. The Al Sol show in Florida added the freestyle class for me and the Baroque Horse show in Florida let me perform as an exhibition for extra practice. These shows run very long into the evening, Friday night's classes didn't end until after 10:00. I rode Douwe in the indoor arena close to 11:00 so I could get him familiar with the arena and ride with the wings. He was really relaxed and knew what he was supposed to do. Saturday morning we had the Friesian Dressage Hack class and then I got ready for the freestyle at lunchtime. It was very hot this weekend, over 100 degrees on Friday and Saturday. Very difficult heat to deal with but luckily there was an indoor arena for shade. I took Douwe to the warm-up and we practiced a little with the wings before our routine. We stood in the doorway waiting for the music....when it started I let Douwe stay standing while I lifted my wings slowly. There was a little wind behind me that made the wings flutter as they were raised. It had a very ethereal effect.
As we started trotting I couldn't help but have a huge smile on my face, Douwe was being so good, trotting right with me and listening closely to my aids. Usually he gets a little excited when he first goes in and I have to post to help stay with his big trot. This time I was able to sit and he was happily trotting wherever I wanted him to go. He performed all his transitions, even a canter to a halt at the end of the routine! I forgot to have my friends video tape it.....I can't believe it! But luckily someone from the audience put up most of my ride. The beginning was cut off a little but I am grateful that there is a clip of us performing. Here it is: httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AnDO9cFDAKE