Saturday, July 28, 2012

He rode with flowers...

Here is The Futurity report for 2012.   This is the last year that Bourbon gets to ride in The Futurity.  For my non-horsey friends, The Futurity is a nomination of a horse as a baby.  Only those nominated can compete the first 3 years of their life.  Bourbon was nominated by the breeder, and so he was shown in hand as a yearling by Bobby Richards, placing 3rd.  Last year was ridden to Reserve (2nd place) under the hand of BJ Richards as a 2 year old.  And this year he would be ridden as a 3 year old Trail Pleasure competitor.    Certainly exciting...and quite the big deal.

Futurity Dreams.  Would he win the roses?
So here is how it all unfolded - from my perspective.  Thursday, July 19th was The Futurity show.  The Futurity was held this year in conjunction with the TWHBEA Versatility show, instead of The Celebration.  Unfortunately for me - I was in Las Vegas for work at a medical congress...not in Tennessee for The Futurity.  Due to this conflict, I had discussed it with Hannah, and she would go ahead and take him and find a rider for me.  She could not ride, it had to be an amateur rider, since he would compete in the Trail Pleasure division.   I was lucky enough to have Miles Irby agree to ride - which gave him a good rider for the night's competition!

At 4pm The Futurity began.  I had just left the congress and headed over to the Las Vegas airport and checked thru security and scurried to the gate.  I pulled out my computer and logged on to the live stream of the show on the Walking Horse Chat.   I was able to watch a number of classes before they called for the plane to board.  I logged off...about class 11 - Bourbon was in Class 18.  As I boarded the plane, we met with a flight delay.  So, I continued to check the Chat for live posted placements from my phone, until they made us shut off all electronic devices.  As you can surely was before class 18.  Darn it.

The plane took off, rose tens of thousands of feet up in the air....and then was fairly uneventful for the next 3 and a half hours -- except for my constant fretting and wondering how Bourbon would do.   When I landed, I reached for my phone.  I held it in my hand, and tried to decide if I wanted to turn it on....or wait until I got home.  Two seconds later it was on and I waited for it to sync.  It sat silent.  And a minute still was silent.  Typically if someone had sent a text or eMail it would start buzzing as each text or eMail loaded onto my phone.  But tonight...silence.   I tossed it into my purse, and pulled down my suitcase from the plane's overhead compartment...and headed for the car.   I drove out of the parking lot....paid for parking and headed down the road and onto the freeway.  My long silent ride would be about 45 minutes home.   Due to delays my flight landed way after I didn't want to call Scott so late about it.  Or should I?  As I came down the ramp to the freeway, I wondered if he had done poorly, or if no one sent me a message, cuz they all knew I was up in a plane.  Yeah, maybe no one sent me a message...they wanted to tell me in person!  I held onto that hope.  Then all of a sudden, my purse (or rather my phone) started to buzz buzz buzz.  Since I was on the freeway, I couldn't grab for it.  It killed me.  As I finally reached home, drove (ummm, sped) down the driveway to the house and into the garage...I couldn't wait to grab my phone!   So there I sat - about my dark garage, looking down at my iPhone.  I took a deep breath...and then plugged in my logon code.  The phone lit up, and I saw there were some text messages...

Krysta Allen, Bourbon, Hanna Pulvers
and Whitlei Green right after B's big win!
The first text message read..... "he won".   I sat in shock...HE WON!   OMG!  And then I saw the second message, and it simply said.... "he wore flowers around his neck"......and I cried!   I couldn't believe it!  I just sat there with pride, and cried.   Only for the big deal shows do they put flowers around the horses neck when they win.  And then the rider wears the roses as they do their winning victory lap.  I imagined what that would look like...and it was bitter sweet.  I was so happy he won....and so sad I missed seeing it all happen.  And for a second I know what it is like to miss a baby's first steps....   And then my phone buzzed again....another message was coming in - it was a photo from was of her holding Bourbon's reins, with him in his flowers.  I was the best photo EVER.  I immediately made it my iPhone logon page photo.  (Here it is to the left.)

The GORGEOUS flower ring that Bourbon
wore during his victory lap!
I wiped the tears of joy off my face, pulled my bag out of the trunk of my car...and tiptoed into the house....gave the greeting dogs a pat...and then tiptoed up the stairs.  I could hear Scott snoring (LOL)...and I changed in the dark and slipped into bed.  He rolled over...gave me a big hug....and we fist pumped to Bourbon's win!   He had watched the stream...and said that Miles did an outstanding job...and Bourbon rose to the occasion.   And he described the flowers...they were yellow, pink and orange - and he said they looked spectacular on Bourbon.  Miles had wore a white shirt and hat, and rust chaps -- and it was all perfect.

So, I'm so excited to report that Bourbon - or rather Watchin for the Storm - is the "2012 Three Year Old Trail Pleasure Futurity Grand Champion"!   What a great feather in his cap....and what a great boost to me for going into The International.

I checked the judges cards...and learned that not only did he win the was an unanimous win among the judges!  WOW!!!!  I know I keep saying this...but Hannah is amazing and she is doing an awesome job with B.  He just keeps getting better and better.  I'm so happy for this win for B...but also for Hannah.  She's worked so hard on him, and finally a BIG BIG win to compliment her hard work.  YEAH!  And, thanks to Miles for riding him to the roses and making him look spectacular in every way.

Watch the ride:

See the photo of the class and victory pass!:

Me (all smiles) and Bourbon (with his flowers), with
Hannah and Bub.  The photo was taken when I finally
got to Tennessee to hug EVERYBODY. Yippee!

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