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13th April

Posted: 13 Apr 2015 - Comments (0)
Yesterday we went show jumping at Tall Trees with both horses (so more saddle juggling). Entries were not huge which was a shame as there were good courses and a lovely arena but made my life difficult with limited time to change tack and warm up horses. At least this time I stayed on!

First up was the British Novice and Posy jumped a nice clear round. We still have long way to go on control and suppleness but get her to the fence and she has plenty of ability and actually I think the way of going between the fences has improved.
Whilst I was really pleased with Posy I was soon brought down to earth by Bobby. Our results at the moment just seem to be getting worse and we had 4 down. I think it is all related to the canter I seem to have perhaps shortened it too much and lost the power and quality. I either seemed to have him back behind the bit or running through the hand to the fence.
So putting that disappointment behind me it was back on Posy for the jump off. We were drawn last and there were no clear rounds. She jumped clear for her first win in affiliated jumping.
I withdrew Posy from the 95cm class and just had Bobby in the class. Although the round was not great there was an improvement and we had two down this time.
So not the best preparation for Bovington this weekend but I know the ability is there the key is me finding the rideability in the canter.

Posy was then entered in her first Discovery class. With me being a bit rusty it looked plenty big enough! Sadly we had a video malfunction which was a shame as it would have been good to show you what happened at 3! Fence 2 to 3 was a dogleg with 3 coming up quickly on the turn by the judges box, unlike the last class it had bright rainbow fillers underneath. We turned to 3 and Posy spooked violently sideways taking us too far off course to jump it, I turned her back towards the fence not with a hope of jumping it but more to make a point - she somehow seemed to jump it sideways from an extremely acute angle and leave it up! The rest of the round was clear - the jump off then looked even bigger!

We were drawn first in the jump off and once in the ring had to wait for about 5 minutes for the timing to be sorted. I thought she may switch off but luckily she didn’t although perhaps I rode my worst round and saw some funny strides however again she coped and jumped another clear. We have now done 5 BS classes and 5 double clears. To cap it all we were again the only double clear for another win.
So very clever Posy who now also has 61 BS points and and has won £95!

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11th April

Posted: 11 Apr 2015 - Comments (0)
This business of having two horses out and about competing is certainly stretching the old bank balance! Undeterred I am taking both show jumping to Tall Trees tomorrow it would be nice to think they both win some prize money but a tad unrealistic at their stage of education.

There has been disappointing news on the Sarnie front, she has come back from meeting her potential husband having refused point blank to be covered. Her violent resistance means future attempts are not practical. The vet came and scanned her last night and we have decided to have one final try by AI. She will go back to Nippy in a fortnight just to help come back into season once showing in season she will be scanned and hopefully at the optimum time we will do a collection from Nippy and straight away do the AI. This really is the last throw of the dice I can’t afford to keep trying and also if nature really is saying she won’t have a foal then we have to listen. Fingers crossed firmly please. I can’t thank Georgia & Matthew Stokes enough for bending over backwards to give Sarnie every chance and my long suffering vet Joe Ivey who would would like to see a foal from Sarnie as much as I would.

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Colraine Show Jumping

Posted: 8 Apr 2015 - Comments (0)
Sorry getting a bit out of date! Whilst Bobby had a well deserved day off we took Posy to Colraine show jumping. Just entered the British Novice and was quite glad that was all I entered as seemed quite a decent track. It was run as a single phase so the second half of the course was against the clock and jump off height.

Sadly no video or pictures due to a technical hitch! Posy was a little green over the first couple of fences but soon got into a rhythm and popped round clear. We took it very steadily so had a slow double clear. However these were a rarity and there were only 2 of us that managed a clean sheet. So we came second and returned home with a slight profit (£8 on entry). So an excellent start to Posy’s jumping career with 3 classes jumped 3 double clears, two 2nds and a 3rd!

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Howick Horse Trials

Posted: 6 Apr 2015 - Comments (0)
It has seemed a long time coming and certainly been a few hiccups on the way but we finally got to our first BE event with Bobby. It was a day of firsts - dressage on grass, SJ on grass, competing XC and certainly doing a one day event. I questioned before we left how he would cope with the atmosphere and that was well and truly tested in the dressage. The arena was in sight of XC, quite close to show jumping and under a loudspeaker! The whole day was highly exciting and although he kept the lid on it to the extent of any bad behaviour he was like a coiled spring and dressage was a damage limitation exercise with me valiantly struggling to keep him in the correct pace. He is very capable in this phase so I was a little disappointed however the judge was clearly blinded by his good looks and long eyelashes and gave us a very generous 36.5. On a good day we could have knocked 10 marks off!
Show jumping warm up was very sticky and actually ideal to canter Bobby around on and get him working and concentrating. It didn’t quite work as he still went in the ring and just ran through my hand a couple of times, once into the double and once to the final fence. Once I get him listening and the bitting sorted he should find this phase easier.
Cross country was great asking a variety of questions in both types of fence and combinations. Considering his total lack of experience and knowing we were on a non competitive score I took him very steadily across country trying to give him an educational and positive experience. He was ace always looking for the next fence, focusing on the question and really the only issue was that if I had let the handbrake off at all I think brakes would have failed.

There is a nice bit of video showing the rail ditch combination and the roll top to brush.

A very nice clear but about 20 time which isn’t an issue at the moment the speed is there just need it with control!

I would highly recommend Howick, great event, well organised and very friendly. They did well to run considering the rain before hand and the tractor drivers were fabulous as nearly everyone needed towing in and out.

Following this event we have squeezed an extra in before our next planned one at Bicton in 3 weeks and entered Bovington in 2 weeks. He thrives on work and I think 3 in short succession will do him good and then move him up to BE100 in May.

Some more lovely pictures thanks to Nick Perry for the brilliant shots.

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1st April

Posted: 1 Apr 2015 - Comments (0)
Suddenly we are very close to Bobby’s first event and the weather is looking hopeful. Are we ready? Well if you asked me a week ago I would say yes but after my tumble at the weekend it does put some doubt in your mind! On a practical review he has never done dressage on grass, show jumped on grass or done a competitive cross country round leave alone a one day event. However he is more than capable at each element the big question is how he copes with the atmosphere, people and things going on.

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BS Show Tall Trees

Posted: 30 Mar 2015 - Comments (0)
It has been a long time since we took 2 horses to one show leave alone jumped them in the same classes. This was further complicated by the fact they both share a saddle. It was certainly a tad hectic and not helped by for the second time in 48 hours me trying to fly from the horse without any wings!!

Both were entered in the British Novice (90cm) and 95cm Amateur class. The weather sadly was horrendous which meant the show jumping was in the indoor arena not the bigger outside arena and it was so miserable the outdoor arena was not even used to warm up. It is great that there is a second indoor arena but it is quite small and meant warming wasn’t easy. I rode Posy first as being the youngest it meant she could get the most time. She behaved brilliantly despite the wind rattling things and warm up being tight. Was a bit nervous going straight in at 90 but needn’t have worried as except for a green jump at 1 she jumped a very competent clear round.
So then came the first of what was 4 saddle swaps, we did cheat and use a stable to speed things up. Bobby probably suffered most with struggling to warm up but actually started his round the best to date but half way round we lost the canter and had a pole.
There were 4 or 5 in the jump off and although very green Posy was more than capable of angling a fence and slightly cutting a few corners. Another clear and we finished 2nd in her first BS class even winning a small money prize. (Big plus point)
So straight onto the 95cm class where Posy jumped another clear round. At the moment we have not got a great contact or connection but she has such talent that even with this missing she is finding it very easy.
So it was Bobby’s turn for the 95cm and again he was jumping well, we did have a pole but then he decided I needed some flying practice! In all honesty it was just one of those things. We approached the double and he slightly screwed and jumped right over the first part, I straightened him up sharply and he straightened however I had not got my position back and as he jumped the second part I was catapulted out the side door! Ouch - I certainly as is my normal way landed with a bang! Luckily I was only winded and able to hop back and pop a couple of practice jumps outside.

Sadly there wasn’t time to lick my wounds or mend my bruised pride as it was time for another quick change and Posy in the jump off.

What a good girl I just steered and she produced another clear round for 3rd place. So two classes, two double clears and two frilly’s!
Today I am certainly walking like someone double my age and trying not to let on at work that I have tumbled twice since I left on Friday!

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