Supported By:

SureGrow Jayne Townsend Equine Bowen Therapy Woof Wear Activate Your Seat by Maeve Sheridan Super X Country Cousin Jack

My Blog

Earlier Entries Later Entries

Tall Trees - British Dressage

Posted: 16 Jul 2017 - Comments (0)
So after a couple of dressage lessons with Stef we were well prepared for our BD outing. This is only Ellie's second BD outing and second attempt at novice tests. I was really pleased how much easier she found them than her first attempt.

Novice 22 was first and with putting into practice Stef's tips I was really pleased with the test we produced. Although still tight at times the frame was a lot better and she was balanced in the transitions. The medium paces still need development but overall I was extremely pleased.

We scored 66.3% only 2% off the winner with us in 3rd place.

The Novice 38 test didn't feel quite as good maybe a bit tighter as she tired, but actually viewing the video there was lots to like. There had been a change of judge and although we had a very similar score of 66.6% we were further away from the leaders. Nevertheless we were 4th in this class and Ellie picked up 8 BD points for her percentages.

So that is dressage practice ticked off and back to the jumping now!

Comments (0)

Dressage Weekend

Posted: 15 Jul 2017 - Comments (0)
Sorry for the lack of blogs I have not disappeared just struggling to keep up currently! If I didn't have to work everything would be fine!

Anyway this weekend we are focusing on our dressage (how exciting!). I am very fortunate this year to have the support of Stef Eardley so this weekend I made the most of it with two lessons on Friday evening and Saturday morning. Friday's lesson was a bit of a failed experiment when I changed Ellie's bit and put in a rubber straight bar to see if that would help with the curling, it didn't and I just lost the softness I did have. Just goes to show something that is not objectionable out hacking can be a totally different kettle of fish when used in a schooling environment.

Today we were back in our old bit and the session started with Stef having a sit on her to get a feel. As Stef is representing GBR in France this week I shouldn't be frustrated how well Ellie went for her and how much better the frame looked. I think poor Stef did find her a little smaller than what she was used to! The main issue she picked up was a straightness issue that means she often moves right as she steps away, this may be caused by crookedness issue of mine with old injuries but nevertheless needs correcting. A lot of time was spent in walk and halt just getting her to listen and then move away off the right leg, we also used some right leg yield to help correct this. As this improved so did the curling and by giving more support in the transitions she started to really improve.

The video shows a few minute work towards the end of the lesson worth having the sound up as can hear some useful comments from Stef. For anyone that has not had a lesson with Stef I would highly recommend trying her.

Tomorrow we are putting it into practice with some Novice tests at Tall Trees!

Comments (0)

Bicton BE90

Posted: 9 Jul 2017 - Comments (0)
Bicton is one of my favourite events with fabulous organisation, preparation and so friendly. The ground yesterday was firm but the work that had gone into the track made it ride so well - huge thanks to the team at Bicton.

For us it was a little bit of an up and down event. Ellie warmed up well in the dressage, I kept it brief due to the heat, perhaps I should have done more I'm not sure as she was quite tense in the test and when she gets tense she tucks her nose in and becomes tight in the frame. This was her worst BE test to date which was disapointing although the judge still marked us quite kindly giving us a 33.3. To be fair despite the frame it was accurate and obedient with good shapes and movements on the markers so I guess this saved us. Luckily for us no video for this as the camera card was full!

Show jumping for the 90 after jumping some Discovery's looked quite reasonable. I have been working on my position when jumping as considering her smaller size my body position can have quite an influence on her jump. In particular trying to keep my shoulders back so as not to put too much weight over her shoulders. I was also trying a new bit in this phase a ported soft rubber beris bit which means she isn't curling as much in the frame. She jumped a super round with generally good spots to the fences and with me remembering to keep my shoulders up. As we neared the end of the round I became more enthused with the possibility of a clear round and of course rather than keeping my shoulders up I started throwing myself forward over the fence resulting in the inevitable 2 fences down over the last 2 jumps. I was very frustrated, mind you I have asked Ellie to have a chat with Sarnie as she always seemed to compensate for my mistakes!!
Luckily we finished on a real high. The cross country was a decent track, quite hilly with the full range of questions. The ground was well prepared and knowing we were out of the running we had a good cruise around. The first couple (videoed) were shared with the 80 so kind then at 3 my favourite fence a hay cart! She flew this and it set the theme for the whole round, she flew over everything, the drop to blue jump (couldn't decide how to describe it but it was blue), through the first water, over the dog kennels and train, took a rather wiggly line to the spooky ditch to roll top where I missed my line, the only slightly dodgy moment came over the second double of kennels 3 from home where we tried 2 and half strides in a 3 stride distance. She then flew the water to finish, considering we weren't rushing we only had 2.4 time penalties so very pleased how she is progressing in this phase.
So although not all the elements quite came together really pleased with the day. We may now have a break for a while, both due to the events available and the hardness of the ground, it is not just the events that I have to consider but the work home. Saying that one of our closest events is in a fortnight at Launceston and if we do get any rain then I will be trying for a late entry.

Comments (0)


Posted: 7 Jul 2017 - Comments (0)
Been a while since there was a Kensa picture, sorry the colour isn't great but thought this was a nice one - amazing what a dog squeaky toy will do for getting them to stand up! (13 months old)

Just packing for Bicton so will report after the weekend.

Comments (0)

Tall Trees - Show Jumping

Posted: 4 Jul 2017 - Comments (0)
A quick update from the weekend before I shoot to bed and another manic day planned tomorrow. I just don't have time to work, need the lottery win quickly.

Anyway back to Sunday and we went to Tall Trees BS to perfect our jumping, as you will see we are still not quite there but we are starting to not have a fit when we see a Discovery course. I also thought the Discovery at Tall Trees was a decent height - anything is on a 14.2.

We had a fence in the British Novice which was a lazy tap behind whereas in the Discovery (video round) we had two genuine mistakes. I pushed her on the wrong side in a related and just backed off slightly going into a decent double.

So very pleased and now full steam ahead looking at Bicton BE90 on Saturday. A spot of dressage judging for me tomorrow night to remind me what I should be aiming at!

Comments (0)


Posted: 1 Jul 2017 - Comments (0)
I know I wanted rain but there are extremes! Saying that it has helped the ground nicely and eased the compacted hard and cracked fields. On the back of this I have managed to get an entry in for Bicton a week today. Whilst Bicton make every effort with their going I have been struggling to get the work into Ellie with limited facilities at home which prevented me entering. Despite the persistent rain I have had a couple of good sessions in the field this week.

Horse hunting is proving frustrating, my budget although seems to me to be healthy is far short of what I am looking for. I think I need an equine version of 'Location, Location, Location' where someone can help me sort my priorities out and help me be realistic. That or I need a fairy godmother or a magic money tree. My budget is a little short of 5 figures yet even 4 year olds with potential seem to far exceed this and a nice horse that has been out to a couple of shows seems even more. Guess I will just have to be patient and keep scouring the market.

Comments (0)

Page: 59 of 101