Stadium was clear with very reasonable jumping efforts but some messiness in between the fences - mostly surrounding an overly strong horse haha.
|i <3 those pricked ears tho|
This plan depended in part on how the earlier phases had gone. Part of me felt like I should take advantage of the schooling opportunity while I had it, but I also felt like we would benefit from a smooth easy complete run - and maybe a ribbon too if things went well enough.
Ultimately I chose the latter. Walking both courses reaffirmed my impression that the Intro was slightly beyond Charlie's confirmed level of schooling right now. It's possible (or even likely) that he would have been fine. But I wanted a safer bet than that for his second ever event.
The bank was actually a moderately spooky log drop shared with BN. The water was very inviting but with a full size house a few strides out. And the ditch was actually maybe the most adorable ditch I'd ever seen - possibly the only of those three questions I actually kinda wanted a shot at lol. Oh well. All are saved for another day, bc on this day we stayed our course with Elementary.
|if you can believe, i actually forgot to take pictures of the first few fences on our walk. so here's a still from the helmet cam video instead. jump 1 was a simple log|
So we jumped the Elem and Intro warm up fences (both fine) then headed off to the start box. Walked out of the start box, picked up an easy ambling trot for the first log jump, then never looked back.
|cute little house for 2. and actually i kinda like these "between the ear" shots for the jumps!|
|tho it's fun having side shots too <3 yay for friends on course to snag pictures!|
|little ramp coop thing for 3|
|just in case you got spoiled by all the HQ pics from loch moy, here's a stark reminder of 'Fraidy Cat Eventing's low low low standard for photo quality|
|cruisin pony <3|
|baby produce stand! the BN version of this scared the shit out of me back in 2015 with Izzy. fence 6 is downhill in the distance.|
|and even babier bench!|
|lopin' through the woods|
|another box type thing!|
|spooky black monster eyes? or..... just another box?|
|emma: "dear god, turn, horse, TURN!!"|
|phew, made it! and moves like that are why i wanted tiny jumps lol|
|look seymour, it's another box!|
|the fair hill train!!|
|charlie: "Choo CHOO mother fuckers!!"|
surprisingly the video is only a little longer than loch moy's even tho the fair hill track was a much greater distance. methinks it's bc we basically ran through the whole thing this time lol
The reality is that my trainer is not wrong in saying Charlie's not learning anything from smaller jumps. That he needs and wants something to look at, to make him think. But it's also not wrong to say that there's more to learn about this sport than just the jumping. And Charlie at times during this event showed that he hasn't internalized all those other aspects yet (fucking duh bc it's only his second full 3-phase haha).
So my hope is that by "going through the motions" per se in this division, and allowing the horse to lay down some honestly pretty nice jumping efforts for his current level of training, that he'll understand the process better at our next events where we'll be back at the 2'3 level and can expect to start seeing ditches / banks / water on course.
|fair hill fox jump!!|
Mostly, my sense is that Charlie is a genuine and honest horse. He's a good thinker and easily focuses on tasks or activities that interest him. Luckily for me, this whole jumping thing definitely piques his interest - even at speed bump height haha. Thank god for amateur friendly horses!
It just generally felt really good to get through this event in a fairly straight forward fashion. Charlie got through each phase with confidence, and fully demonstrated that he knows how to get the right answers even in unfamiliar and potentially stressful situations. That's exactly the kind of horse I want to be riding, especially as we start thinking about the situations that are likeliest to make *me* nervous too lol.
So. Event #2 is in the books. And Charlie's clear jumping moved him up from 6th to finish 4th for his efforts. Good boy :)