Apr 092021

By Patty Wilber

Last weekend, we (me, Jim, Lucy and the two dogs) hauled south to  WestWorld of Scottsdale (AZ) for the Western States Desert Classic, run largely by the Arizona Appaloosa Club. (NM pitched in some bucks to help out.)

What a blast!  (A fun blast and also like a blast furnace–it was hot!)

We got to share a tack room with Christy H. and Nancy K.! I got to hang out a little with Judith, Doc and Kathryn! The 4K barn was there, too!

We stayed next to Nancy, on site, in our “new” trailer. It was hot, I say again!  In the upper 90’s (F)!  And we showed outside. Yikes.  High sixties is about as warm as it has gotten at our house so far this year.  Fortunately, my prescient purchase of the electrical package for the trailer allowed us to plug in a fan, and it did cool off nicely when the sun went down, thank goodness.

The trailer slots were pretty narrow, and Jim got to test his backing skills, big time.  With Nancy’s help (while I was settling Lucy), he got in and then set up our camp!

Despite the close quarters, we really enjoyed having arena-side accommodations!

Lani (left) and Coulson (right) seemed to have a good time hanging out, too!

Lucy felt that travelling all that way alone was a bit unfair and she nickered whenever we stopped for fuel. But she is such a low key soul (except for wash racks…she really hates wash racks and hoses, though she is easy to bathe, go figure) that overall she travelled very well.

Lucy ready to head out and limber up on Thursday evening.

We were in class 20 (ranch trail), 23 (open boxing), and 26 (jr working cow horse) on Friday, so we thought we would be showing sometime in the morning.  But the show was HUGE and we finished cow horse in the gathering dark.  The show had Paints, Pintos, all breed and Appaloosa entrants that all showed together, making some very large classes.

Fortunately, waiting around did not bother Lucy.  Take a nap!

If you stop moving, she falls asleep!

Friday highlights: 

Lucy got two firsts and two seconds in Jr. Ranch Trail!  

In boxing, she ran her best dry work pattern ever, and even got whoops on two of her stops (a growth area for us!) She earned four second places. And, yes, we got beat by an eight year old kid.  I really should have gotten her autograph. She was impressive and earned her firsts.

In cow horse, Lucy got really strong and excited taking the cow down the fence (see picture above for normal demeanor), but then came right back to me and circled-up the cow, FAST and in very good position.  That was the best circling-up we have done. Three firsts and a second.

I was happy with that, except that the photographer did not get any cow horse pictures!  

On Saturday, Christy got to show in the earliest class of the day. Deets had some good goes and gave us ideas about what to work on, as well!

Christy and Deets before our first classes Saturday.

Lucy also had early classes.  Thank-goodness.  It was not yet too hot (it got to 97 F). In ranch rail we pulled a second, two thirds and a fourth and in Ranch Riding we got a first and three seconds vs. the other Appaloosas. 

I was disappointed in my piloting in the Ranch Riding.  I over-rode the turn arounds a bit and we tried to lope (ok, I will sort of blame Lucy on that one) when we were supposed to trot.  We still placed fairly well, but it was not our top drawer pattern.

Lucy backing while the judges watch! The judges were amazing. LONG LONG (like 7 am to midnight long) hot days!  Thank-you to Delena Doyle, Bruce Army, Sherry Haynes and Mark McCarthy!

Getting ready for Ranch Rail to start.

The top drawer run was done by a woman I do not know that was riding  bay horse with one blue eye that was trained by Andrea Fappani.  That horse and rider just flowed through the pattern with such effortless beauty that I had to congratulate her twice.  It was gorgeous! (A run for Lucy and me to emulate!)

It was a fun weekend with friends from all over, and I was darn spoiled by having Jim as my support team for everything!


  4 Responses to “Western States Desert Classic”

  1. Awesome, Patty! We were over in the Equidome showing Chevy in miniature horse
    classes. Wish I had known the NM team was just next door. Congrats on a good, even if realllllly hot, show!

  2. Wow! So good to see the show pictures as well as the training pictures (though I happen to love *anyone’s* training pics/videos, in any discipline, on any kind of horse.) Congratulations on all the placings!

    • Thanks! I have a show on Sunday but yesterday and today I am recovering from Covid shot #2, so hopefully I will be up for showing tomorrow. I feel a whole lot better today–I mean I actually made it to the barn and fed instead of getting Jim to do it. Then I ate some breakfast…and took a nap. Holy cow. It kicked my heinie.

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