Thursday, June 28, 2012

EBOP Hunter Trials

As you can see a very successful day for me and the big horse Blue. He really is such a good boy now that we have a bit of a relationship going on and he knows who I am and that I wont smash his mouth. Being a half clydesdale with a bit of a high headed hollow jumping shape and a lot of knee action he isn't ever going to do amazingly well at hunter trails, but he is athletic enough to do quite well in the events not only judged on style.

I'm starting to get nervous in competition again and I don't know if it's because I have done hardly any competing or because with all the change and moving and a new job with a niggly boss I'm really struggling with my mental health. I'm keeping it together but sometimes it's really hard. Stupid mental illness. Anyone the first class is the eye opener and everyone has to do that class to prove they are capable of competing. Blue jumped pretty well though I over rode the double and made it an awkward one and a half strides and he touched the wire fence which is a big points loss.

The next class was the senior under 45 and he jumped really well and we ended up second in that class very cool, because that is my first ribbon ever in a hunter trial. The open hunter I had a really awkward jump over the tape jump. It had gotten a lot taller and I was like oh, and he went should I go past and I went nah better jump it and he did but it was just not a very pretty thing by that stage.

They do a steeplechase at this hunter trial and that was pretty exciting to watch they just went full out up and down these hills and over wire fences. Very exciting stuff. Then they had the handy hunter class and this was a very very difficult test. It's based around this little box that was about 3m across and 6m across and about 80-90cm high all the way around. You had to jump into the box and stop in the one stride of room available then pivot and jump from a stand still out the left hand side. Come round again and halt in the box again and then jump from a standstill again and halt on the otherside of that fence. The closer you could do the final halt to the fence, the better you would do. Knowing Blue pretty well
I had him dribble over the last fence and he basically landed in a halt. Yay for me! So he won that one.

Then it was the wire jump were you jump over the wire fence and and then turn and back over the same fence. Blue jumped ok but touched it both time.  Then they had a hairy legged race which is for the horses that are a half clydesdale and is another steeplechase. I wasn't that keen but got talked into it and off we went. Very exciting stuff. I haven't jumped fences at that pace since I evented. A bit frightening and I was a bit please please jump and don't chip but he was awesome and it was a real buzz. I won by a nose. The finish line is the last fence and it came down to a photo finish. That photo is below in the sentence below and is in the word "here". Please click it

Hairy legs picture click on the word HERE

Then there was the teams events which involved first a three abreast jumping contest over three fences. We started well but then I got behind the others and stuffed it up. Sorry guys. The next event involved opening a gate and doing a bit of a flag rash and then going through the gate again and closing it. My team was second in that. The final event involved the box again. The three riders in the team had to start in the box. Getting three horses into the box is hardwork because its so small! The first rider jumped out and bent around some poles, they jumped back into the box and the second rider jumped out and did a barrel race and then jumped back in. Then the final rider jumped out and jumped through a coffin-  jump, one stride to a ditch and two strides to another fence and then gallop back to the box. Now the trick is to have the others out of the way and bounce through the box because technically at that moment of landing all three are in the box again. The time stops when the final rider is out. We had a good run really, though didn't go flat out. Blue did he was super through the coffin and then bounced through the box like a real eventer. Consistency was the winner really and despite a few mistakes my team was second.

So overall it was an amazing day despite all the rain to start off with. It was nice to feel I still got it and am competitive. Especially with the fact that all my exciting plans for the future are starting to fall apart. Boo to that.