Monday, July 7, 2014

Wairarapa Recycled Ribbon Showjumping Day

So our Showjumping group has been running winter showjumping days on the new all weather surface at the Solway Showgrounds and it starts at 40cm so it's been great to see lots of really small kids on really small ponies out to have a crack at showjumping. The ribbons are all recycled, so basically some of the area pros have donated ribbons and the kids get a real thrill out of seeing what shows the ribbons are from.

My first ride for the morning was the schooler Charlie, on his second public outing under saddle and he was quite a good boy. Initially, he was quite daunted by the horses working around him, and we got a bit of tail flagging going and the big trot. Though I like to work them quite forward at home so when they get to shows and get big in the movement and a little hot, they are used to being ridden forward and stay responsive. It was nice to have him taking me as he is very quiet, like a 15.1hh Connie. Smallest horse I have ridden in a long time!

He was in the 50cm class and the 60cm class. He was clear in both, and amzingly bold. He really loves his jumping, but he is only four and he finds jumping all the way around a whole jumping course quite tiring. For the second round I didn't give him a very long warm up because he was getting over it, though his enthusiasm returned once he was in the ring.

Important points, its incredibly hard to be accurate to fences this small and the horse is insanely brave to fill. He didn't look at anything, at the filler above about 4 strides out I felt him hesitate a little bit and I rode him up, but didn't need to and ended up getting him quite deep, which doesn't matter at this height but it cracked me up. I couldn't have been happier with the little guy. He is a bit of a minimalist, but he isn't far off from needing some height. For his first showjumping day he was exceptionally good. The liverpool wasn't in the course, it was an option to jump after, and I'm of the opinion that you need to expose them to stuff as soon as possible, especially while the fences are small and not an issue. Over both classes without even a second look. I can see him as a really cute lower level eventer/hunter/ do everything type horse. I hope to get him back later in the year once Winter is more over and I have my life situation a little more settled. He has pulled a few shoes and runs the risk of losing too much hoof wall if he keeps pulling them in the mud so he has gone home until winter comes to an end.

This is his 60cm class and as you can see there is plenty of polish to put on and he got tired as the round went on but he was such a big grown up boy, and he made lots of progress in the month he has been here in terms of forwardness and reach in his gaits.

And my SUPER DUPER big surprise is that I brought a new horse for the sum total of ten dollars. Which is pretty much the best deal ever. He came to the day for a trip, second ride and he was foot perfect. His canter is to die for, though he is a little short in one hind, though apparently, he has always been that way and they think it's from having spent a long time at the track, he has over $6000 in earnings. It will improve with work and suppleness and it's really minor.  So he is an eight yr old TB by Ustinov, he has already got all the basics and he is a huge smooch and so far has been an absolute dream to deal with and his name is Tsar.

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