This season kicked off with Capel CNC.
M and I had a good drive down on Friday morning, swinging by SP’s place to pick up Cadbury on the way down.
We arrived at Capel before lunch and spent a couple of hours relaxing after getting the horses settled. Cadbury and GK were in the float yards together and spent the afternoon happily stuffing their faces full of hay.
B and E (who are leasing Mon from M) came down for the weekend and SP arrived at about 6.30pm as she had to work Friday. We headed down the road to Capel pub for dinner where we pigged out on some amazing pub food. We practically rolled into the car park before heading home.
Sat morning, I had dressage at about 09.40. GK warmed up great, but I over cooked him a little so he started to get a bit tense when we went into the test. He relaxed a little and we ended up scoring a 53.5… which is a pretty big improvement on the 62 he pulled at Fairbridge and the 60 he scored at Wooroloo, so I was pretty happy with that.
Photo credit Waylib Photos http://www.waylibphotos.com/
GK got put away to have a break, and I went out to do my helper duty which was dressage Marshall for the EvA105 class, which was made easy due to the fact all the riders knew where they had to be, who they were following and arrived to be marshaled with plenty of time before they were due to ride.
I had GK in a different bit for Show Jumping. I borrowed a bit off M which GK has been jumping in at home. He jumped really well, got one rail, which was more my fault than his due to me needing to learn how to ride him with that bit… I should have probably used it more than twice before Capel. Whoops. Anyway, I am happy with it, so I will be investing in one of my own so I don’t have to keep borrowing M’s.
Sunday, M had XC at 07.33am so we all watched them head off on to XC. Joe was a bit strong and keen but they got around safely. We headed over to the water jump to watch the 1* and 2* lines. It was pretty cool seeing everyone go through. We then watched a bit of SJ before heading over to get GK and Cadbury ready. Cadbury was off first and had no problems until she got to the wine barrels before the water where she decided she wasn’t so keen to jump them and had a refusal.
GK and I headed out on course not too long after. We had a cracking start. GK was keen, but not too keen. He sped up when I asked, he slowed down when I asked… which is not like him at all. normally he is set against me and pulls like a freight train. I was half convinced that he had been body snatched. We flew over jump 4ab, the photographer Red got some awesome slow motion video of us there.
We flew over the ditch palisade and through the sunken road with no worries. I had made the decision to take the direct route at our first alternate. It was an apex that had been built between two trees which GK didn’t even look at. I slowed him heading through the gate as our next jump had a nearly 90 degree turn to get the line for the jump. He flew over that, flew up the bank and over jump 10 which was a log pile. The next jump had an alternate too, the direct route was a trakhener which was the only line I walked as I knew he wouldn’t have a problem with it… He treated it as if it was a canter pole before zooming off through the trees towards jump 12 and flying over that too. I got a little lost at this stage. I knew the next jump was straight ahead… but I couldn’t see it so I slowed him down a bit til I saw it which cost us a little time. Once we locked on the the jump, we took off again towards the water and the wine barrels the Cadbury refused at. GK popped over them and straight away I had to sit him back in order to do a 180 degree turn for the Compulsory Passage through the water. I wanted him to canter but GK wasn’t too keen and trotted which cost us some more time. Once clear of the water we stormed home finishing 11 seconds over time. Which is great. I know exactly where we lost the time and how to improve next time.
Over the wine barrels
We finished in 14th position on a 61 (last season I was lucky if that was his dressage score). Needless to say I am delighted that our hard work during the off season seems to be paying off.
Next event is W.A.Y.E.R. which is Easter Sat and Easter Sun on Bo in the EvA80 – Bo’s first run at 80cms! A little exciting.
Will keep you updated.