Show Reports 2016 - Part 3: It Takes Three To Tango

What a great decision it was to go to this show in Styria beginning of June! Originally, it wasn't on our show schedule but after receiving the first out of 4 necessary scores for our next license in May, we decided to take this opportunity to get another one, or two or even three...

He did not care about the ribbon

Expectations were moderate though and we went there without our trainer. Friday he felt awful in the warm up but as soon as I entered, he must have looked really good. Why? Because we scored 63.583% and came in second! Oh my God, I could hardly believe it! SECOND! In such a difficult test! I was overwhelmed and cried (not the only time this weekend). First had 68.542% and last had 61.583%. The score from all three judges: H: 63%, C: 64.875% ad M: 62.875%. We got tons of 7s for enter at A, walk, walk pirouettes, flying change, extended canter, unfortunately, we made an extra flying change in one of the counter canters which resulted in 4s for this movement. Apart from that, Hafl lacked (still) a bit of collection especially in the canter, some of our transitions sucked but that result was more than okay already. That was the second needed score - two more needed.

On Saturday, we rode two tests, an LM test (difficult 2nd level) and an LP test (easy 3rd). The LM test went really well even though our lateral work was very weak, earning lots of 5s. No major mistakes apart from that, though, again, lots of 7s and even a 7.5 for one of the walk piroeuttes. We finished with 63.824%, 8th place (first: 68.235%, last 59.853%). Individual scores: H: 65.147%, C. 62.941%, M: 63.382%.

The second test was later at night and I felt already pretty tired and so did Hafl. Nevertheless, we scored another result above 62% (thus, increasing the pressure for Sunday's test). Everything was pretty neat but a bit tired and thus, not collected enough, major missed were the half passes in trot and one of the flying changes (both double coefficient). I am now getting used to this huge amount of 7s and now be angrier than ever for those costly mistakes. The final result left us in last place with sufficient 62.667%. H: 62.250%, C: 61.750% and M: 64%First place scored 66.542%.

Some fun to entertain Hafl during a long show weekend

I was over the top excited for Sunday's test. This was the last chance to score another >62%, the last one missing for the next license (RD3). Nervously in the warm up I needed to ask Stephan to call the test, otherwise, I would have been super angry at myself for forgetting the test in case. So we threw our heart out despite this test being particularly difficult with 4 flying changes. Again, lateral work was not enough and then we also had a mistake in the flying changes. I knew it would be super tight if at all. But the judge at C was so kind to lift my overall score a bit such that in the end, it was enough! With 62.958% we scored our last needed result. In accordance with what I felt, the individual scores were: H:.61.750%, C. 65.750% and M: 61.375%. Phew! I even started to cry in the arena and could not believe our achievement, reaching our next milestone!


With this license, we are officially eligible to enter third level tests in Austria. Just wanted to highlight that the number of Haflingers at this level is pretty low. No wonder I am super proud. Back then, we thought that our next show would only take place two weeks later, but it got canceled due to EHV infections.

Our next show will be next week at our barn, the Regional Haflinger Championships. This year, for the first time we will have to ride FEI Junior Tests - I am excited! Hafl feels pretty comfy, the canter half passes not causing too many issues. We also had a chiropractic visit him in order to help him with the tension on the right - that was last week Wednesday, so we'll see how much that improved.

Next week, we also need to show our 2016 freestyle - curious already about the costume?

Sometimes, riding dressage feels to me like cutting a hedge by hand for this guy...long way to go...

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