Somehow, it feels like this show snuck up on me… even though I have been talking/prepping for months. Maybe that’s how it feels when you just aren’t in any kind of show rhythm for years on end. Ahem. Enough about that.
HOWEVER, it did become apparent that… I really needed to go XC schooling. In fact, I have only gone twice this year.
Hah oops. We should probably go before tackling a XC course that is deemed:
All courses: Moderate to Challenging. Open rolling terrain. Good galloping courses with water, ditches & banks and combinations at all levels… Fences will be up to division height and spread specs. on all courses.
Ahhh yes. Then the course map came out:
And I was like… oh yes. We do need to school haha.
So on Tuesday evening, we hustled back over to Flying Cross Farm. Luckily, they had a recognized event there last month, and that course was still all set up.
We started with a short course over the first 4 jumps of the course… where I missed jump 2 because I had no idea we were supposed to jump it. THIS IS WHY COURSE WALKS ARE NECESSARY.
And like… this was our first jumps XC since May, and are these not the happiest yellow ears you have ever seen?
Since that went fine, we moved to the next field… where my cambox died. Oh well. We jumped the Beginner Novice bench, a left turn to a small coup, another left turn to the Novice brush. Again, no issues other than May trying to run away.
When we got to the water, I was REALLY careful not to let May look at it until it was our time to go. I wanted a TRUE reaction to the water. We jumped over a coupe to get going, a right turn to the water and… she looked at it but CANTERED RIGHT IN. First time in my history of owning this horse that she has cantered INTO the water. Even better, she kept cantering THROUGH the water, even thought it was a bit deep from some recent rain.
On the other side, we hopped up the Novice bank (easy peasy). We circled back to go down the BN bank (easy) and back THROUGH the water. Then May GALLOPED up the hill to a little hanging log. YAY!
Alright Alright. It can’t ALL be perfect, right? Our last course was over a little house, right turn to a 3 stride BN combination, left turn to an open oxer. Then we went down a super steep hill, over a ditch to a roll top, and finished off going back UP the hill and over another little house.
The first jump was fine, but I was a bit conservative going through the combination, so we got 3.5 strides. The Open oxer was fine, and she came back to me to trot down the hill. I picked up a nice slow canter before the ditch to make sure she saw it, since it was twilight. She immediately locked onto the coupe behind the ditch, so we had no issues there. Then we GALLOPED up the hill to the last fence.
Mandy had us redo the combination, where I REALLY rode at it, and had no trouble with the three. A quick but HUGE confidence boosting XC lesson!
The below video is our first 2 BN XC jumps EVER, and I am so happy she isn’t this green anymore hahaha.