Thursday, September 6, 2018

Planning for success, part one

I am really excited about my upcoming showing opportunities and posted words to that effect on the Braymere Facebook page.
My friend, Christie Richardson, asked about the planning process.
It occurred to me - not for the first time - that this would a great topic for a series of blog posts, so I've decided to share some of the behind the scenes preparation that goes into a (hopefully!) winning performance effort.
The first thing I do is copy the performance class list and paste it into a new document. I include the judge's name and any extra information which might influence my entries.
Then I start brainstorming!
This particular show has a very unique performance concept. Instead of offering event specific classes such as harness, stockwork or trail, the show holder has chosen to go with a breed-based performance division. Each class is open to horses of a designated breed type, but beyond stating the event should be realistic for the breed, there are no requirements as to the event itself. 

I really love this.

For each breed type, I am asking myself, "What performance event is the breed most closely associated with? How can I best depict the essence of this breed?"

In some cases, the answer is pretty obvious. I'll definitely be showing an Arabian costume horse in Light Breeds, an upper level dressage horse in the Sport Breeds and a cutter in the Stock Breeds.

I add all of this to the list, and make sub-lists of all the things I need to make each entry happen. 
This is where I am right now with the Battle of Breeds planning. I have solid ideas for ten of the eleven classes (someone please help me with Carriage breeds!) and a not-too-overwhelming list of things I need to beg, borrow and steal make, borrow and buy.  
December is a long way off, but not really. I'd better get back to working on Raconteur's new dressage bridle!


  1. What type of English saddle is most versatile? I'm in the market for a decent tack set to be able to string through a few classes, and the insight would really help narrow down the search! Also, if you can, in what color?

    1. You really want a brown jumping type saddle. That can go in everything but saddleseat. Black is okay, too. It's super out of fashion in hunters (and has been for decades) but it's not against the rules.