Monday, April 25, 2011

Te Rapa Horse Trial 23/24 April 2011

Warmed up really well (after a few of the obligatory skedaddles), and was moving forward nicely in a lovely frame and really swinging from behind. He got a little tense when I moved up to the arena, but soon settled again, and although not quite a good, was going quite nicely.

The test itself wasnt a world beater, but he was listening and obedient, although I lost marks for inaccuracy, and losing the canter (followed by incorrect lead). A little disappointed with his mark, but he was still mid field, so nothing too much to complain about. And no mention ANYWHERE on his test sheet about lacking impulsion, so we are definitely getting there. Although he only got in the mid 50's he still scored 7 for paces.

Show Jumping
Bit like dodgem cars in the warm up, and he reacted to the foray, but soon settled once we started over the practice jump. He felt great over the practice jump.
Went into the ring, and he gave me a really lovely ride over most of the course. Got a bit deep to number 2 and jumped it a bit green but got over it.
I got my line wrong to a pink striped upright off a turn, and he took that one out, but was GREAT through the one stride double and everything else....jumped the triple spread liverpool great, then turned onto the final "easy" two stride with upright in and oxer out. My thoughts on the corner were..."yay, just one rail" took it as a signal he had finished his job and switched off. Cantering into double, horse 'not home' was a weird feeling. It was only right at the foot of the jump that he suddenly realised there was a jump...needless to say he crashed through both elements of the double....but what a superstar to even have tried.
12 jump faults

Cross Country
Bit of an ask, but I was looking forward to seeing how we both coped with the different questions, and in all honesty, I wasnt expecting him to actually stop at anything.
I also wanted to ensure that at this outing I had him 'on the job' when he came out of the start box - and he was. Was more forward, and I was asking him to go forward...jumped number 1 really well, a bit looky on approach to number 2, a somewhat stark looking mobile spread, but he jumped it happily. Kicked him on up the hill and got a lovely bold jump over the curved log. Onto the Wedge to BIIIGGGG ditch combo. I had been warned that horses were backing off the bright yellow wedge, so rode him quite strongly into it, to be rewarded with a big bold jump over it......however, that then meant that the ditch came up very quickly. I really dont think he understood the question, having never encountered a ditch of that depth or width, and with the two logs on the face of the landing side I wonder if he for a moment thought it was an in and out or something? However, he tried, but got a bit tangled up, feet this side of the landing logs, and down he went (with me catapaulting in the process).
So we got the big E for a horse fall....
frustrated we didn't get to do all those other jumps, also feel a bit silly that I haven't taken the opportunity to school him over that ditch (or indeed the other jumps up there) given it is all of ten minutes away. But I had been concentrating more on my dressage and show jumping.
Also wonder if I had simply popped him over the spooky wedge jump, if the extra time would have enabled him to work out the question better?

However, will drop back to training for Woodhill, so that he can have a very easy run and finish the season on a good note. Am also planning on running him in the snaffle, so that will be a good testing ground. I really don't feel he needs anything stronger XC, but would rather find out for sure on smaller jumps.

He started this Season as a green pre trainer, so he has done very well to progress to Pre Novice, and complete the season with no stops either SJ or XC.

And to think I was too scared to even ride him at home this time last year, and wanted to sell him!

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