Wednesday, September 17, 2014

combined trainings past and future

Isabel's home barn is hosting a combined training show this Sunday - the second since July. These are very low-key events. They are open to the public, but only one or two horses trailered in last time. So it ended up being mostly our own students competing. 

For me, it's a great way to dip my toes into competitive events without feeling a lot of pressure. Plus, since I help organize and set everything up (including planning the jump course!), I have a pretty good feeling for how it's all going to ride. 

July's event was my first judged dressage test ever, and it was enlightening. Fortunately the judge didn't find any training holes that I didn't already know about. 

But I learned that I ride much more passively during the actual test - more passenger than pilot. So that's an area for improvement this next time around. We're getting the same judge for this next event, so I'm looking forward to hearing her take on our progress. 



The judge spent around ten minutes with each rider discussing their test and scores. VERY educational - but also very slow. So slow that all the ride times were blown out of the water and the jump ring came to a complete standstill while the riders worked through dressage.

The jump arena was set in a big field and included terrain + dewy grass, which ended up causing a lot of problems for some horses (we were no exception). So this time around, we'll open the jump ring a few hours after the show actually starts, so that the grass will be drier and riders are more likely to be finished their tests in time. We also adjusted the location of the arena relative to the field to get flatter terrain.


the september version. pretty, no?

Since the competitors are mostly lesson kids, the trainers added in non-recognized divisions, including 2' and 2'3" classes (no one entered the actual BN class last time around...). Last time, Isabel and I did the 2' class - aka Elementary B with a w-t dressage test. This time the 2' class will be Intro A with a w-t-c test. I originally planned to do Intro B, the 2'3" class... but Isabel's wound (and subsequent infection, boo) has me second guessing this. 

Our stadium round in July was ok-ish enough. Izzy was pretty keyed up and giraffing around by this point and wayyyy over-jumped everything (repeatedly popping me out of the tack), though at least we mostly found decent distances. Our lack of organization and balance actually led to a huge 'oh shit' moment after jump three, wherein she nearly fell on her ass. 


oops

She trotted off sound though, and jumped more conservatively and 'across' instead of 'up' after that. I also opted to trot into the remaining lines and through all the corners afterward, too. Silly mare. 


video of our stadium round. check out 0:53 for our derp moment


her pride was a little sore... but she recovered quickly

We were in second after dressage (should have been third, really, had another student made actual circles instead of squares), and the rider in first had a refusal in stadium. So despite nearly eating it, our round was technically clear and moved us into first! yay us!

All in all, Isabel felt confident over fences, but wasn't jumping as well as she usually does in the arena, and we had some serious deer leaps in warm up. 

Since we haven't been able to practice in the newly set up turf ring (and might not be able to at all), I'm doubting the wisdom of moving up to 2'3"... so I will probably stay at 2', though at least it'll be a w-t-c dressage test this time around. 

14 comments:

  1. Gulp! That picture made me eek for you! Good recovery tho.

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    1. yea tell me about it!! poor Isabel was so embarrassed. but physically fine... and that's what counts.

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  2. woo hoo, congrats on first (who cares if it was technicalities, all of life is technicalities.)

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    1. thanks! and that is the truth!! it was definitely a happy day :)

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  3. Wow scary derp moment, glad that you were able to just keep going through!

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    1. thanks! fortunately isabel is super dramatic when anything hurts, so i knew pretty immediately that she was ok.

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  4. Nice recovery on the scary moment! Love that you continued on as though nothing happened. Well done for both of you!

    Sounds like 2' is a super wise decision, that turf being so slippery is freaky! I hate showing on grass because of that.

    Best of luck when you show, kick some butt!! Will be really fun to see your progress. :) I love Isabel, she is totally adorable!

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    1. thanks! i'm pretty sure the worst bit for her was having an audience when it happened lol.

      but yea, 2' is probably best for now. the show in two weeks may be another story... :)

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  5. Scary moment! Good job for staying on and good luck next time you show.

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  6. i literally just read your entire blog. and i think i said 'me too!!!!!!!!' at least 400 times. we may be the same person.

    also now i'm really curious where you live because we're also orioles fans in my house (but that's the only local team we've really adopted) but we may be close by? go O's!

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    1. awesome, thanks for reading! we're probably not very far away if you're on the MD side of DC, since I'm in bmore. very cool!

      just found and read your blog too - looking forward to hearing more about your exploits with Burns :)

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  7. Replies
    1. thanks! hopefully we get a repeat fun experience this weekend too :)

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