The Drift Goes to the Draft: Showing

iphone122Last post about the Draft Show was bathing.  Now we pick up from there.  Did you know they did this to the Clydesdales to make their feet look so good?   I kinda know.  When I was a show mom we used to put (I mean my daughter used to put) cornstarch on her horses legs and then wrap them the night before.   In the morning when you unwrapped them they would look sleek and shiny.  But with these Clydes the look is fluffy._MG_2761These Cldyesdales in green and gold have had their feet done.  I can tell from behind.  They are waiting patiently for what ever job they have to do.  Their job usually involves pulling something.  A nice wagon, buggy or something heavy.DH 12   263Here are some Clydesdale pulling something heavy.  It does not look very heavy but it is VERY HEAVY.  I forget how many tons.  They don’t know it but they compete on how much they can pull.  Or maybe they do know.  The audience knows for sure._MG_0893Speaking of green and gold check out the mane decor on this handsome guy.  _MG_0953This guy prefers red and white over green and gold.  It takes some skill to braid hair like this.  Especially in the hussle bussle in getting ready for a show.DH 12   107That is why they start kids out young learning to braid the drafts manes for shows.DH 12   106It sometimes takes a balancing act to stay on task.   But practice makes perfect.DH 12   124For the REAL thing.   They make a sport out of mane and tail braiding.  If you are going to show drafts you gotta know how to braid manes and tails….even the boys.  DH 12   126And you have to braid them within a time limit.   Thank goodness someone is handling the horse.   And thank goodness that horse is standing still.  All this showing stuff is a bit stressful.DH 12   118The little girls show the BIG horses too of course.DH 12   116But these horses being gentle giants take good care of the kids.DH 12   120Starting at the top is recommended.  But it is the hardest place to reach, especially when your arms are not too long.DH 12   122Once you get to the middle you get the rhythm going and nothing can stop you.  A properly done french or dutch braid won’t come out until you take it out.DH 12   130After the braiding is done the fancy decorations come out.  I’m not sure what they call these.MM F-46Do you notice a difference in this girl?  Exactly one year has gone by.   If she does this class a year from now it will be a cinch for her.  No pun intended.DH 12   128There are always nervous moms and trainers in the stands wishing for the blue ribbon or any ribbon if the class if large.MM F-47NICE!  I think I like that yellow and black.  ESPECIALLY on the black shires.MM F-48Oh and lets not forget the tail decorations.  Do you know why they tie up the tails on show drafts?  It is partly for show but also for safety so the tail won’t get caught up in the harness and lines.  Sometimes depending on the class or chore the tail may be left alone if it is short or “docked” or braided and kept hanging.DH 12   186All that braiding is worth it when you step out in the yellow wagon with grandpa.DH 12   185And then grandpa lets you take the lines._MG_0897Winning a blue ribbon is always a thrill.  No matter how old you are._MG_0877And taking second is not so bad either.   In this class the mane did not need to be braided.  I kind of like this mane the way it is._MG_0887They even give little big horses a chance to compete.  It is good experience for everybody.   I bet she had her feet done up._MG_0985Any ribbon is good, especially on this baby.  I think the purple looks fabulous on her.Draft H15Purple looks good on just about any horse.  This class is in the BIG arena and is called Gentlemen to Drive.   Ladies can you imagine “your gentleman” coming to pick you up for a date like this?  I can.Draft H 2While in the show ring goobers not allowed.  Draft H 3When it gets late and the bright night lights shine down the BIG horses get kinda restless standing there waiting for their ribbons.  They get itchy with all that stuff all over themDH 12   222And then in the morning they have a guy in pajamas log skidding behind them.

DH 12   110

But being the kind gentle giants they are,  having someone in pajamas log skidding behind them is just fine with them.

Adios Amigo’s.  Will finish next week with Driving and The Dogs of the Draft Horse Classic.

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