I wrote this in August, got half way through editing then ended up being too busy to come back to it – things have changed a little since then and I will write up a post explaining what Eva and I are up to now. However until that point please enjoy the below
Well then. Where do I start.
In short it didn’t exactly go to plan and ended in my first elimination at an event!
But lets start from the beginning.
I had plaited the night before using the NAF Plait up mousey stuff for the first time and quite liked it! In the morning the plaits held really well so I didn’t have to re-do or touch up any.
Loading and traveling wise she loaded perfectly, straight in and not bothered. Im praying gone are the days of the half hour loading time!
We started off not bad with a few 7s and a 7.5, that promptly changed when we weren’t balanced for the second canter and rather than bring it back rebalancing, I rode with the grace of Bambi on ice, I just let it keep running and landing us with a bit of a disastrous two 3s!
The final score was 38 which was actually better than I expected!
During the warm-up the heavens opened, it wasn’t cold. It was actually quite warm and practically tropical.
However while I slowly felt my arse getting more soggy, I rather suddenly came to the realisation that my breaches were getting more and more see through as it continued to rain!
Luckily the rain had stopped and the breaches dried off quite quickly so they were no longer see through and pretty much dry by the time we went in for our round. After the fact I realise that I just assumed that and didn’t actually ask anyone if they could see my bare arse while I was jumping…
We took our time round the course as I was wary of the grass being slippy with all the rain and she was a little spooky with the judges box but we ended with a lovely clear round.
After the last ODE during which she went round with the most enthusiasm I think I’ve ever seen from her it is safe to say I might of had certain a expectation for this round!
She warmed up nicely feeling forward and taking me into the practice jumps. We got to the start box and she wasn’t particularly a fan of the buzzing but I managed to wriggle her in and when the count down finished she was off out the start box no problem. We flew over the first then we turned towards number two.
At that point she stopped. She had spotted the jumping and the lorry park which was over the wall.
I kicked on and she shuffled in the direction of number two then stopped.
I kicked again wanting more. She gave quite a large buck which threw me over the shoulder. At the same moment I heard a crack come from my right pinkie. I managed to land on my feet but safe to say that was the XC round well and truly over!
Of course I could of negotiated the situation better with Eva and maybe tried some schooling technique to get her attention back on me. But that not really the first thing you think of when you are fresh out the starting box. I also don’t think it was too much for me to ask.
It feels like it’s everything but the jumps is our issue on cross country. Eva is far more interested in the sandwich that the fence judge is eating rather than the fence that she should be jumping!
I don’t think I rode as well as I could have, I think I was a bit frozen with it being our first affiliated event of the year. The dressage I could of corrected better at the end, Eva took me round the showjumping and I then the cross country I was a bit too enthusiastic and Eva wasn’t with me for it.
I’m really wanting to make eventing work for us but I won’t lie that maybe showjumping is more our thing but is it because its what Eva is happiest doing or because we’ve had more practice at the discipline. It’s not something I’m ready to make the decision on just yet but it is something at the back of my mind.
I’ve got a couple of exciting things in the pipe line. The event I had planned to go to in July has been cancelled so I will be seeing about getting out to a cross country course elsewhere.
In August there is the second event at Hopetoun which I am determined to get to. In my original plan I had set out for the year I had hoped to be considering tackling the 90 however we aren’t forward enough on the cross country to consider that. So I’ve modified that to nailing the 80 this year and getting out to showjumping and dressage during the winter with the aim of moving up to the 90 quite sharp at the start of next season.