Next stop this afternoon was Reining Session II in the Alltech Indoor Arena. Whether it was coincidence I can’t say, but the quality of the horses and riders improved in the second session. The Polish rider chose some native music that was lyrical, and the way he and his horse flowed reminded me of a dressage freestyle. It didn’t surprise me when, at the end of the session the announcer shared that the rider also did a freestyle that could “make you both laugh and cry.” He had some technical difficulties, but I think his style is very attractive and could be the next generation in reining.
The radio commentary provided by the NRHA president was excellent. Just enough was said to be enlightening. He didn’t talk it to death and he didn’t leave major questions unanswered. I talked to him afterwards to tell him how well I thought he did and how I thought that their way of describing staying “between the reins” was something we talk about in eventing as “to keep the horse between the straight lines of the reins and the stirrup leathers”. And that his expression of the horse being “willingly guided” by the reins is analagous to one of my favored expressions of the horse “following the rein”. Very interesting.
I had wondered before the first session if I would be able to tell the difference between very good reining and not-so-much-good reining. It turns out, yes. The basics are always the same. Cool.
Jay and I toured (part of) the trade show for a few hours after that. Everything you want, and stuff you didn’t even know you wanted (but now you do) is there. More on that tonight.
Right now I have to catch a bite at the Maker’s Mark Bourbon Village (who wouldn’t love that name?) and go to opening ceremonies. Jay is catching OC at the hotel tonight, the local NBC affiliate is carrying it live. Just one more reason I love KY. That is sweet.