Monday, July 30, 2012

Hopeful Horse Trials photos

Our first attempt at Novice!

I feel we were a little overfaced and a little under prepared.

Dressage went really well.  We had great luck in the timing of our ride- the judge took a lunch break and let the next 2 horses come up and school in the main arena, so we trotted up and down and up and down the outside of the plastic dressage arena and got used to the sand hitting it and the scary pylons.  He put in a very nice test and we were in first place with a 30.8.

All photos by Gerald Morse.

Some of the xc jumps looked HUGE!  This one had big rocks in front of it, so you had to choose to  jump the rocks and the log or try to maneuver exactly between the rocks to get in a little bit closer.  I chose to go between the rocks and it worked out well.

There was a long, steep downhill to the water pond.  In Novice you had to jump over a small log into it, and I was not sure that was going to be a positive experience.  I chose to bypass our jump, run through the water (which he balked at heavily but did hesitantly go in), out the other side, run back through, and then try the jump.  It worked brilliantly in that he had no problem jumping the log, but we picked up huge amounts of time faults.  Enough to take us from first to last.  I'm still completely happy with my plan, though.  I'd much, much rather have time faults than refusals and end up with a happy, confident horse.

The other jump we had trouble on was a vertical log jump, then 2 strides to another one.  He's  never seen such a short combo on XC and tried to dive out of the second one.  A strong left rein and he went over it, but hit it so hard with his hoof it left permanent marks.  Zoiks.

 I was most intimidated by the showjumping phase, and SERIOUSLY got jumped out of the tack 3 or 4 times.  It felt like he was trying to jump the moon.  I decided that he was probably jumping so hard because he was nervous, which is what makes me think we just weren't quite ready for this height. 

This is my new favorite picture.  I got an 8x10 and am going to frame it and hang it on the wall.  My horse jumped clean in both XC and stadium, and tried his heart out.  What more can you ask for?


Val said...

Jasper has some serious airtime over those jumps! His form looks gorgeous.

Congrats on a successful trial. You should be very proud of your boy and all you hard work!

EvenSong said...

You guys look great! Knees to his chin (could be just a little tighter below), alert, FLYIN'!
I hope the "permanent marks" were to the LOG and not Jasper's hoof... ;-D

EvenSong said...

Okay, didn't want to seem so critical. Going back, first and second stadium shots, he IS tucked up better with his feet...

Dom said...

AWESOME photos!

Kristen Eleni Shellenbarger said...

Whoa those are great photos! Something to be really proud of. What an honest boy :)

SprinklerBandit said...

You made it around! Love your decision at the water--so much better to build his confidence with a positive ride than to have scared him with the jump first. I'm sure next time will be even better!

BritnieAnn said...

LOVE the photos!! Go Jasper!

Ruffles said...

You guys look great. He is seriously giving those jumps some height though, he's tucking his legs up so nicely too.
Awesome photos.

Albigears said...

We were at a schooling show once, and a little girl was watching us warm up. She asked how high Jasper can jump, and my mom said, "the height of the jump plus 2 feet".

The permanent marks are on his hoof.

Yeah, I guess he figures if he overjumps everything enough there's no need to tuck his legs up. He could pretty much have them hanging straight down and he'd be ok. :)

I do have to say that the higher jumps make for better pictures!