Extreme Mustang Makeover 9/22/07
In Fort Worth!
We loaded our baggage, saddles, tack and all the rest of the paraphernalia necessary for the trip Wednesday night. Bright and early Thursday morning Amigo hopped in the trailer and we left for Ft. Worth. After only a couple of wrong turns (navigator error, sorry!) we arrived at the Watt Arena around 11:15. Amigo settled into his stall and we headed out for some lunch. Ted signed up for a couple of practice sessions in the large arena on Thursday evening and three more on Friday. The Thursday afternoon practice went great. Amigo was relaxed and easy going with all the other horses, the banners and all the rest of the hullabaloo. In fact he did so well, that Ted decided to let him have the rest of the evening off.
Friday morning, we
arrived back at the arena, fed and hayed the big guy, then took him down to the
warm-up pen. Amigo was "off" and a little grouchy. Not himself at all. I
was pretty sure he had a little tummy ache and was praying that it would not
turn into a full blown colic. In spite of being uncomfortable, he worked pretty
decently and Ted was happy with him again. We gave him a dose of Fast Track
probiotic gel to help his indigestion and by that afternoon he was doing much
better. The heat and humidity in the barns and stall areas was oppressive
and going back and forth from the cool A/C of the arena and the heat of the
barns seemed stressful on all the horses.
Amigo's new breast plate.
Friday was also the day they judges the horse's conditioning. Ted took Amigo over to the judging area a little before noon, and he stood well for the judges. He was given an 18.25 for his overall score out of 20 possible - that was an awesome rating!
Video of Friday Warmups
I have to say that the absolute highlight of the entire trip was meeting all the trainers, their family, friends and supporters. This was the very best group of folks that could have ever been assembled. Some of them I had been in contact with prior to actually meeting them, others we met for the first time, but ever single one was supportive, friendly and wonderful to be around! For those that we had been in contact with before going to Ft Worth, it was like finally meeting long-lost friends! The entire experience was made so much sweeter by the friendships established there.
The day of the show went by in such a blur! Amigo was again just not quite himself,. He was quieter in the morning, a little slow and sluggish, but no signs of a true colic. As Ted prepared him for the in-hand competition, he got a little brighter and really paid attention to everything he was asked to do. Unfortunately, in the actual class, they bypassed one of the poles in the fifth obstacle, and so were DQ'd from the entire class.
Video of the In-Hand Competition
By the riding portion of the competition, Amigo was obviously not feeling up to par. He was sluggish and irritable. Ted gave him another dose of Fast Track, put a bit on him and used spurs lightly in the warm-up pen. He seemed to be responding and moving well after that. In fact, so well that Ted decided to use the same tack in the class. oops! The change in his normal routine combined with the roar of the crowd was just a little too much for the big red horse. He started off okay, but a little way into the first lope sequence it became too much and he ran through the stop. Ted got him collected up and they managed to finish the pattern, but the break was enough to DQ them from that portion as well. All in all, we felt he showed VERY well given the time constraints placed on us with the weather and Ted's health. We were very proud of that American Mustang!
Sunday was the adoption, and I think I had tears in my eyes most of the day watching the mustangs go through the ring one after the other. Some going to new homes, others going "home." Amigo's hip number was 77, so we were there all day, waiting our turn to go through. Our youngest son, Ian, age nine, rode Amigo into the pen when it was time. Ted walked beside them giving the crowd his history and what he thought Amigo would be suitable for. Ian stood up on Amigo's back, slid off, picked up all his feet and crawled under him - what a ham!
Amigo was adopted by an endurance rider from North Texas - talk about a perfect home!
Many Happy Trails!
We will miss you, Mi Amigo Fiero.