Well this was only our second show ever, and Louie did great! Our first class was walk-trot english pleasure 18+ and we rode hunt seat style as we've been practicing at home. We had a great ride- pretty clean, I think one missed step, but otherwise a very nice ride. They called for extended trot and everything, and Louie did that nicely. Out of 5 horses, most of whom were experienced show horses, we took 2nd place!! Yay Louie! The horse that won was a 4-yr-old morgan who was shoed up for the show ring and was obviously somewhat experienced- a very nice horse.
Our second class was immediately after the first- junior horse english pleasure. This was our first ever cantering class. Of course I was nervous about this as we've had our share of cantering trouble at home. . . But it went pretty well! He did just great the first way, then one of the other horses in the class had some trouble, so they had us repeat our canter the first direction after that horse left the class. Louie just stepped right into his left lead both times, but he did get a little amped up after all of that cantering- a level of excitement I haven't seen from him yet, but I'm kindof glad it's in there somewhere. He walked just fine, with a few reminders, but was really trotting with a lot of energy the second way. I had a bit of a hard time just keeping him in the trot- he was trying to canter during the extended trot the second way, and he did actually break for a stride or two right in front of the judge. When it was time to canter the second way, I asked him from a walk, but he trotted about 4-5 strides into it (which is okay because we've actually only taken the right lead from a walk ONE time at home- ever). But he did get the correct lead on his first try- so I was very happy about that! He was a bit fast at the canter, and was trying to keep up with another horse who was quite fast, but he listened pretty well and cantered at a reasonable speed despite his bountiful energy supply- and I don't think we passed anybody, so that's good. :) We were 5th out of 5 in that class, which was probably where we fit with not having a perfectly clean ride.
Overall I was very pleased with how he did- he listened, didn't have any big spooks at any of the scary cow corrals or barrels next to the arena, was very well mannered, and he seemed pretty happy and comfortable. He wore his neck and head beautifully- a bit higher than he has been at home (that's what happens when you get to a new, more interesting place!), wore his ears, and was very consistent, collected, and fairly light in the bridle. Bjorn said he was moving really nicely- had a nice big floaty stride, and used his legs as well as Social ever did with show shoes on, and Louie just has plain plates on a short foot in front (now I think that might be an exaggeration on Bjorn's part, but I'm happy that he thinks that because that's all he cares about and he likes this horse). He thought Louie could easily raise up to go saddle seat in the show ring. Unfortunately, I nearly had to twist his arm to get Bjorn to even come with me to the show, so he didn't want to take any pictures of us. I understand the whole concept of not being able to watch if he's taking pictures, but I would have loved even a candid of two before or after my classes, but oh well. :( So I have nothing to share from this show, so you'll have to take my word for it- we did really well! Yay Louie! Good boy!