Prefer to listen to this post?
As many of you will know, I planned to take Scottie to some clear round jumping today. When we arrived, Scottie was being a massive baby in the warm up ring. We were struggling to get the right canter leads on both rein and then we were refusing tiny cross poles.
I’m not sure why this was exactly. We were in an indoor school for the first time, so that could have been it… I don’t know. Either way, despite eventually getting over the cross poles, we were still looking at everything and being a bit dramatic about life in general!
So I ditched my original plans of doing a 45, 60 and 70cm and decided to start with 2 rounds at 30cm. Annoyingly, (or positively – I’m not sure which) the course in the outdoor school was less scary! We had a good look at the cement mixer and various fillers which were not in the arena before starting our round of 8 jumps. We didn’t have a problem (or a look) until fence 7, a white plank with green writing, where we refused, but didn’t quite come to a stop. We then also did a similar thing on the last fence… I’m not sure why, it might have just been due to the ‘drama’ at the last fence.
Since I had paid for 2 rounds, I immediately did it again, this time going clear, although still backing off the planks a bit. But it didn’t matter, we did a nice round, went clear and got a rosette!
I decided to do the same thing again for the next height up, the 45cm. I didn’t bother jumping in the warm up arena, I just walked around until the fences had gone up and it was my turn and went straight in. Once again, we didn’t have a problem until fence 7, where again we refused. This was partly my fault. Due to the line and how close it was from fence 6, I was undecided as to how to ride to it as I wanted him steady, but didn’t really have enough room to steady and push on. So I didn’t ride well to it. However, having already jumped the scary plank twice, Scottie didn’t really have a reason to stop. He was straight and being pushed forwards.
So again, I went round a second time and went clear. This round was much nicer and was a good note to leave the day on. Again, we still backed off the plank a little, but the round was really nice. I have a video of it below!
I think I could have done the next height level, as he was only looking at the one jump now. However, he had done a couple of nice rounds and I had been riding him quite hard after he backed off a lot of the early jumps, so I decided to finish there.
Over all it was a frustrating day out. Scottie has only jumped a handful of times this year due to having sore shoulders and losing confidence. So in that sense, he did really well. However, just a few weeks ago in our lesson with Victoria Bax (read here) Scottie was flying round and it was just a shame that he didn’t feel like doing that today, especially when there wasn’t any fillers for him to be looking at. But it was a good experience to get him out and we got 2 rosettes, so I can’t complain. It just proves he needs to go out and jump more to find his big boy pants!