Wow - I have shown in 18 International or Congress Shows!!! This year was my final year as a youth. I guess it is the end of an era for the Barringer Boys from Illinois! I have had the opportunity to own and show some great POA ponies over the years: PS Cinnamon Chips, Wapiti Glory Bars, Truly Loaded w Options, KBC Nifty Kid, Its All Good, DZ Mega Ride, Custom Dun Silver, and Truly Big Time. Each pony contributed to my memories, and I am so thankful for each of them.
As I reflect, last year my goal was to recover from a basketball injury (snapped tibia and fibula) to show at the National Congress. Of course, I worked hard at physical therapy to make that goal become a reality. I was so happy to be able to show my pony, Custom Dun Silver (Smarty), at that National Congress Show! I also remember how sore my leg was after working long hours at the National Congress Trail Practice (a POA Youth Fundraiser). Despite leg pain, I had a good show and spent some quality time with my POA friends. Fun, ponies, and friends .. .isn't that what showing POAs is all about? With college approaching, I offered Smarty for sale and he found a new home! Selling a pony is always hard, but you get to cheer for your old pony and your new friends at the shows!
As the 2013 National Congress approached, I was getting nervous. I was working long hours as an intern at Beck's Hybrids and wasn't getting time to prepare my young pony for the show. Nevertheless, I went to a few shows and borrowed a pony ... thanks to the Tordai and Hari/Payne families! Dad must have realized my dilemma, because he approached me with the idea of getting Truly Big Time (age 21) out of retirement for me to show. I laughed!!! Truly Big Time (Ti) belongs to Brapdon and he never shares THAT pony. Brandon and Ti had been a team forever at POA, 4-H, and NRHA shows. Well, a deal was finally made with Brandon and I was pre-entered for the 2013 POAC National Congress Show with Truly Big Time. Of course, there were a FEW stipulations and Brandon limited me to 3 classes! ! !
One would have thought that I had signed a contract with a professional trainer to lease a million dollar syndicated horse for 3 classes at the Congress! I was not allowed to ride my pony (oops, Brandon calls him a HORSE) prior to the show! At the show, Brandon let me practice after he prepared Ti. Then he critiqued everything I did. Nevertheless, Brandon was nervous at the gate for each of my 3 classes. Believe it or not, I drew to go first in two of my classes! Oh well, I didn't pull Ti correctly in showmanship! Then I was told to sit very still in bareback horsemanship. Guess who shifted his weight the third stride at a lope and did a flawless lead change in bareback? Wow ... Terry Thompson and Gary McCaskill really trained THAT horse for reining! I was impressed ... Brandon wasn't! My Dad reminded me that he always told Brandon that the only reason you lose a pattern class on Ti is because you beat yourself. I finally understood what he meant; Ti is trained so well that he responds quietly and smoothly on command. Well, Brandon was excited about the horsemanship pattern- it had lead changes, counter cantering, and a fast circle. I was thrilled that it had no spins because Ti was use to doing 4 fast spins at NRHA shows! During the horsemanship pattern, I had my cues down and THAT horse performed perfect circles, leads changes, and waited for each maneuver. THAT horse was amazing!!! Brandon, I know you rode every stride of the pattern with me while standing at the gate ... we had a good ride!!! Speaking of good rides, my friend Haley Purkapile allowed me to ride Ima Shameless Impulse in western pleasure and we rocked that class! We had two firsts under the good judges and won a reserve championship. Melissa, I still think that one judge might need new glasses!!! LOL! Purkapiles, thanks for your kindness. Nevertheless, some wins are sweeter than others; such is the case with my horsemanship class at this year's National Congress Show. Thirteen years ago I rode Truly Big Time to my first International horsemanship win, and this year I won my final youth National Congress horsemanship class on THAT same old pony horse!!! Brandon, thanks for sharing Truly Big Time with me; he is a pretty cool ride!
Oh, Truly Big Time was the first POA that was bred and raised by the Barringer family. Dad showed Ti to an International halter win, and his ROM(H). Mom showed Ti in the JPFC classes- western pleasure, hunter under saddle, and trail. Then Brandon wanted a reiner, so Ti was successfully trained to became a National Reining Horse Association money earner, multiple class winner, and multiple high point award winner. Of course, Brandon and Ti won many POA International, Regional, and State Championships and several 4-H awards. But best of all, I won my first and last big horsemanship classes on Truly Big Time. Just think, my family's POA adventure began with the birth of THAT one pretty talented individual ... Truly Big Time!
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