So the next couple of weeks have flown past and the season is quickly reaching its finale. That can only mean one thing, a winter of freezing cold indoor show jumping! But as they say, perfect practice makes perfect and that is what I am trying to achieve.
So what has been going on? Well we were at Pulborough BE last Friday with both Lily and Coco. Lily was doing her first BE100 - see the video HERE. She was on fantastic form and a generally good test with a couple of young horse mistakes left us on a very respectable 33.5. She was rather cheeky in the Show Jumping, however it was really spooky. So she had a stop at the planks. But after a quick and positive discussion she decided she would jump after all and flew round clear. But the result was 4 jumping and 6 time. Then on to the cross country and I was quite worried as it was technical and although she has been going better and better cross country it was a big step up. However I needn't have worried. Steps, ditches and even a step into water and she flew them all so I was delighted. They had done a fantastic job but the ground was deep in places so to jump clear in those conditions was even better.
Coco was also fantastic. He did what we thought was the best test we have done together, unfortunately the judge disagreed and gave us a 40.5, but the best score was a 33 so it wasn't too bad in the circumstances. A silly pole coming out of the double was a shame as he jumped the most beautiful round, but there were only 3 clears in my section! Cross country he was just fab. He tries so hard to please but makes it all so easy. Getting lost resulted in 4.4 time faults but with all that it was still good enough for 4th. Clever pony! We used Target feeding with Lily and Coco at Coombelands, to give them some specific energy and also as they spent a long time in the lorry so it gave them a change of food. It is a really good way of getting water into them through soaked Lucie Nuts if they don't drink.
Then on to Felbridge yesterday. Lily and Ozzie were in the BE100 and Coco in the Novice. Lily was really good, and did a good test for a 35 which was fair. She then was rather exuberant in the show jumping and had one down, otherwise she would have been placed. Ozzie decided that I was asking for canter most of the way through my trot serpentines so we lost a lot of marks, but apart from that he did a nice test so a 41 it was but that was because of two major mistakes. He then was rather spooky in the show jumping but got going and jumped a lovely clear! Coco then did a lovely test, which I rode in sitting trot as a practice for Aldon next weekend. The judge just said he looked a bit tense because he wasn't tracking up, so I need to make sure I still ride him forwards enough when I am in the sitting trot. He got a 33.5 and show jumped clear to win! So a good final prep before Aldon!
Today we were at Larkhill with Lily in the BE90 to put our Spring problems to rest. The dressage was slightly entertaining as the army had their morning marathon during my warm up and test and 50 men runnning and shouting through the middle of the dressage warm up didn't help the tension in any of the horses. So I was pleased with a 35 as she was a bit on edge, but was working really well. The show jumping was very small, but she jumped such a lovely relaxed clear and I was really working on being soft myself to allow her to be more smooth round the corners. Well it worked. Cross country was technical enough, but she was so classy. She popped round like it was nothing and felt like a different horse to the one I had in the Spring. She landed over a fence, her ears would prick and she would be off again which was lovely. So not an easy season with her but we came up with the goods in the end. I feel really proud of what I have achieved with her as I have done it all myself in terms of getting her over all her worries. Which is all the cross country problems were. She simply didn't understand. She is now loving it and I can't wait to get her out and crack on next season!
Thats all for now.