So here it is…. Epworth 90cms ODE!!!
Well, today was a mission of two things. Number 1 was a confidence boost before our regional final in two weeks and Number 2 was to get inside the time after being told my horse didn’t make the time at Frickley because he was FAT!! I was even more determined to do it!
Now walking the course yesterday (alone!!!) massively put the jitters up me. I thought it looked big and beastly and there were 3 skinny ones that i was worrying my beans about!! The showjumping also looked big and bright! ??
We had nice early times and pootled down to the dressage for our time of 8.30ish! I thought it rode well, it was the same test I did at a Frickley and I definitely felt today’s wasn’t as good. Big pats for not spooking and off we went to jump… only to find out it was causing cricket scores!!! Great!
I warmed up swiftly, not too many practice jumps but no waiting about before going in either (my new tactics!) I thought about what Carrot would have said “take your bloody time” don’t rush to the first jump. My Carrot isn’t horsey, he has just seen me bugger it up enough times now ? so I didn’t rush, I presented to every jump and kept the canter consistent… WE BLOODY WENT CLEAR!!! And had heard the dressage score too… 26.3 ??? now normally we are clawing at a placing by now but not this time, we had nailed it… lying in FIRST PLACE we were heading cross country… ??
I was nervous that I would let him down at those skinnies, so I rode positively from the off. Charging into practice jumps like I meant business! There was no one waiting to go so I went and asked if I could, I did and cantered straight through the start box of doom without having to endure the dreaded 3,2,1!!!!
I kicked like stink from the off, the house at number one jumped lovely, round the corner and a short gallop to a sneaky turn that didn’t show number two until you were on top of it, this put the anchors on my pony… I knew he would do this, I’ve had a similar thing before so I was ready for the brakes to hit and I was there with a bum smack and a yip yip and he sailed it!!!
Out into the open for a nicely attacked number 3 and into the woods again for the first ask of the course. A barrel, over a mound and out over a skinny brush (my demon jump) well not today my friends… no sir-ee!!! I lined him up and locked him on and we flew it! On to a line of jumps at 5, a narrow trakehner at 6 and a roll top and coffin at 7, they all rode very nicely indeed!
Number 8 he backed off, it was a big hay cart with shavings bales in front, but he flew it with a big kick from mum! 9 was my let up fence, nice and plain, 10 the water was a jump in over a boat and out over a wishing well skinny for 11. He jumped it all very confidently indeed! 12 I was crying over last night, a big brush with a ditch in front… I kicked and shut my eyes and he did stand off but we made it!! Phew!!
Down to the castle for 13, round the corner and over the bridge which left you down hill sailing over the flower box at 14. We didn’t get the best jump at it but we made it over! 15 the Carrot box jumped great, to 16 the skinny I was fretting over… no bother, I set him up and slowed it all down and he popped over like a dream. Bobbed down the step afterwards like a pro.
Then it came, I was out of breath, long in the rein, relieved to have got over all the ones I was worried about and what happened…. the [email protected] cone of doom!!!!
It hit us, right where it hurt! He backed right off and ran as far away from the doom as he he could!!! I swiftly turned it into a loop and growled like a goodun and he flew it!!! 18, 19 and 20 down the home straight all galloped lovely!! And that was that!!!!
Now there are very important things to take from today, never to get complacency when any kind of obstacle of doom lies before us, never to change the way you ride for the results you have already achieved and never under estimate the power of positive riding.
I don’t feel sad about losing first place, we achieved both of our objectives today and I feel on top of the world. It was a big course and we jumped clear in our nemesis phase… I feel very very proud indeed.
I’m not sure where we ended up but I guarantee there were 20 to add at the cone of doom! But who gives a badgers ass… my horse was a bloody legend today!!!!
Videos curtesy of our lovely Auntie Smurph who drove us there today and was so mega supportive ? I think we both had a soggy eyeball moment when I came out the show jumping!!
Love him so so much, I don’t ever want this feeling to end ????