This past weekend I attended the New England Performance Challenge (NEPC) in Spencer, MA. I am a slacker and have not managed to get my show report done in a timely manner. But here we go.
This is the only OF entry I brought for the day. It is my side saddle strapless dressed in a saddle I believe by Jennifer Buxton (I can't really see it in the photo and can't remember what I dressed her in...) with a bridle made by Lauren Islip. I made the halter, sidepull reins and leadrope. The dolls were all made by me and the little boy riding is my Travis doll made to look a bit like my son. I have been doing this therapeutic riding entry since I started performance showing and have improved on it over time. The horse, Lady Intrigue, is working on a superior event horse award from NAMSHA. She is only about 1 or 2 cards away after her second place win last weekend.
This first entry in the custom division is Highwayman, my Ikantu resin painted by Angelica Nelson. He is wearing a GORGEOUS Native American costume but I have no idea who made it. The doll was sculpted by Joan Yount and her clothing was made by me. I will be remaking it as soon as I find thinner suede to work with. This was Highwayman's first performance show and we started it off with first place!
The next class in the costume/other division was other costume. Highwayman thought he would try out this cute Harry Potter costume. Though when competing against horses wearing gorgeous parade tack and very well done historical costumes he couldn't get higher than 5th. He seemed to enjoy his costume all the same. The costume was made by me.The next class we competed in was showmanship. Highwayman came back with a good showing for first place. The show halter was one I made (in the car, during my daughter's piano lesson, for another horse at a different show, lol) and the dolls are mine as well.
The last class Highwayman competed in was other performance where he was in an auction scene that I forgot to take a photo of. He got 4th in that class. He didn't get any champs but that's OK. He had a really great first show.
Next up was Enchanted Eve in the CM English division. Enchanted Eve is my lovely Victrix resin also painted by Angelica Nelson. Her tack is by Jennifer Buxton and her doll was made by me. Her first class was other English where I threw together a riding lesson scene. I knew I wasn't doing something right when I set it up but WHAT exactly was wrong was eluding me. The note from the judge said "have the instructor hold the reins please" and then it clicked, when riding backwards it's only safe if someone is holding your horse, lol. I originally intended to have the riding just mounting but Enchanted Eve is so tall and I don't have a mounting block. Next time either I get/make a block or the instructor remembers to hold those reins! Obviously I forgot to take a photo :(
The next class was this natural trail entry. I have only ever set this up for a western horse and couldn't for the life of me figure out what to do. So I asked some other showers and they said the doll should be holding the reins. It makes picking up trash harder but at least she won't lose her horse in the woods. This entry (like my other English entry) got 5th place.
The next class for Enchanted Eve was Arena trail. She made up for her poor start with 2nd place.
Enchanted Eve next showed in dressage doing a salute. I am so annoyed with myself for forgetting that photo. I have been working on getting that set-up just right (with a different horse but still...) and we got 2nd place. And I didn't even get a photo!
After dressage was English pleasure and Enchanted Eve got third in that class. All of that together was enough for CM reserve English champion! Not bad for her first time showing.
Next up was the CM Western division. I had a good time with this division. The first class up was roping. I did a lot of studying on roping in the weeks leading up to the show. I learned a lot and I am still not sure if everything is perfect. But it was good enough for second place. The horse is my Matriarch resin, Flash in the Sky, painted by Joan Yount. I have no idea who made the tack but I have had a lot of people offer to buy it from me. The cowboy is a new bendy one I made.The next class in my western line-up was speed games. It's not easy to get a standing horse into a speed game class so I did a housewife scurry set-up. The judge told me that the kid (who is my new Elecktra doll made to look something like my daughter) would still be moving pretty quickly even while doing a pick-up. Maybe she's a novice...my documentation will have to say something about that. Even though they weren't moving they still got 3rd.
Next up was CM non-speed games. And this one got me really excited. As soon as I saw the placing I said I couldn't wait to tell Jennifer Buxton about it! The set-up is the 2 barrels and a pole game with photo reference and description directly from Jennifer's blog. The judge had never seen this before. Ever. A whole bunch of us got to talking about Jen's blog and how great it is for ideas, tips and so much more. Thanks Jen for a super, first place idea!Our next western entry was natural trail. The doll was made by me and was one of the first casual dolls I ever made. I did the picking up trash entry again and it really is easier in western tack. And good enough for third place.
Next was arena trail. The doll was made for me by Joan Yount and the poles were part of a set made by Marci Driscol. I made the flowers to match the jump the poles go with. The scene was worth 3rd.For other western I decided to do an extreme cowboy entry. This was actually the reason I made myself a bendy cowboy doll. I couldn't get him bent down quite far enough to actually be taking the ball off the cone but it's in his hand. And the judge thought it was pretty cool as well.
Flash in the sky also did western pleasure stock type and received 3rd place. All in all it was worth CM reserve western champion. I really worked harder on my set-ups this time around and it paid off.
As my last entry of the day I entered Enchanted Eve in western pleasure other type. Just to see how she would do. She managed to get 2nd place. She is wearing a pretty bridle, a saddle pad that I got with a bargain saddle, a working western saddle made by Jennifer Buxton and a doll I made. After she got her second place win I pointed out to anyone who was close enough to talk to that she won her class with a working saddle. Proving it isn't always bling that wins in western pleasure. Since I started showing I have almost exclusively shown in OF performance. With the exception of my therapeutic riding entry this show was all CM performance for me. While the competition is fierce in any performance ring in region X it is even more fierce in custom. The entries have to be even more perfect to do well. So I was very pleased that my hard work and attention to detail paid off.