15 December 2008

Adult Ride Mini Course - SJing with Ana Rattray 25/26 November

Its great being part of the Papatoetoe Adult Ride, you end up getting heaps of opportunities to ride with different instructors. For the mini course you could chose to either 2 days of dressage, SJ or cross country. I picked to do Show Jumping with Ana Rattray (Cheleken Stud)

Tuesday turned up & started warming up. Flynn felt a little tight & nappy, however worked out of it quite nicely, although stayed a little argumentative about somethings, however completely perked up once the jumps got higher. Ana said he was a lovely jumper with a super front end, but our flat work needs more work, we need to be more adjustable through our paces. She also suggested that maybe a martingale would help as there were times where I'd ask him to wait & he'd disagree & charge on with his head in the air instead, only bringing it down 1 stride out from the jump. Not ideal at all. He was also over the top spooky at the jumps.

After the lesson I had a chat to a friend of mine & started putting 2 & 2 together. I do wonder if the oats are not having the good effect that I was hoping? Since starting them, all I had gained was a horse that was not any more energetic, he was just more spooky instead... Figured maybe it was time for a vet visit to do some bloods, so booked the vet in for Thursday. Made sure Flynn had no oats for dinner that night!

Wednesday Flynn was a lot better, warmed up nicely & actually stayed polite through the jumping. Ana commented that he was the total opposite to the night before, was there possibly something going on with him? I told her about the oats theory & that I was getting the vet out the next day for blood tests etc. Got taught a few more great exercises to try at home to have the horse really listening and am also going to get a few more lessons off Ana in the new year as she's keen to come up & teach at PC every couple of weeks if I can get a group together. So proud that she likes my pony :D :D

Pukekohe 2 day Show Hunter Show 22/23 November

Yay! My first show away in the truck! How exciting! Took it into work during the week and they redid all the gas fittings in the accomodation, replacing the garden hose with proper gas hose (eeek!!) & putting in a new gas cooker. So I made sure I went out & bought milk so that I could actually make myself a cup of coffee! Man I could get used to this!! Tested the fridge & found that whilst it no longer works off the gas setting, it does still work off the battery setting, so made sure I switched it on as I was warming the truck up & turned it off an hour after getting to the show, so as to have it as cold as possible, for as long as possible.

Had decided after Flynn being very flat for the dressage the week before, that maybe he needs heating up a bit? Went out & bought some oats to see if they would help. Didn't make any difference in energy at all, but noticed he was spooking a bit more than normal.

Got out to Pukekohe & had a casual morning plaiting up, drinking cups of cofee & watching the other classes. Got ready and went over to warm up for the 1m class. Flynn felt a bit hesitant coming into the practice fence the first few times but warmed out of it, so I didn't give it another thought. Went into the 1m class & had a right disaster, he gawked at every single fence coming into them, and then had a rearing fit when he took exception to a large area of dirt in the corner of the ring. He managed to get himself extremely wound up & upset over it, but eventually after about 2 minutes of standing on the spot waving his legs around, he finally went past it, but kept a good eye on it LOL Funnily enough we got 20% for that round *blushes*

Then in the 1.05m, I'm not sure what happened, but for the first time in his life, he actually dive bombed the jumps. We had quite a few rails in that class, including landing in the middle of the oxer, even though we'd taken off from a normal stride. 40% in that class & it left me very confused and wondering if I should still do the 1.10m or not... Decided to give it a crack & I could always retire during it, should he carry on the way he was. Turns out he wanted to do the 1.10m class as well, did a lovely round, for 6th place and 75%. So toddled off home, trying to figure out what had gone wrong. Figured maybe he was a bit off his game from being in the paddock with no grass the night before, so doubled the oats, gave him a blud sachet & threw him in the usual grassy paddock.

Went back out to Pukekohe the next morning & got ready for the 1m class. He warmed up nicely on the flat, nice & foward & big powerful trot everywhere, so was hoping the day before was put behind us. However still jumped the practice fence a bit weird. Went into the 1m class & I have to say, I have never had such a short round before! We went over jump 1 after looking at it from miles back (just a plain brown upright too!) then we stopped at the white upright coming into the 6 stride line. I whacked him, we circled & went over it then 2nd time. Then he slid into the white oxer. As in through it. I quite retired & left the ring. That was really, really weird, Flynn's never done that before, if he stops, its a stop & spin at the last second, where as he backed off the whole way down the line & then 1 stride out just put on the picks, with no attempt to dive to the left like he usually does.

Decided to do the 1.05m to see what happened, however we didn't even get as far as the third jump. The white line was again jumps 2 & 3 in the ring. We came into the white upright and he backed off, I growled, he went to go, then went to stop, then thought better of it & tried to jump it, only by this stage we were nearly at a standstill, so he got his front end completely over it, then decided to go backwards instead of forwards. Hooked the pickets with his front legs & pulled them back towards him, got a fright from the pickets & poles coming with him, and leapt to the left, which then took out the jump stand and then took off across the ring. Goodness knows how I managed to stay on. I retired & then scratched from the next class & took him home.

Adult Ride Dressage & SJ Comp 16 Nov

Decided to be brave & entered Flynn in his first Novice test. It had lengthening in both trot & canter, as well as some leg yielding, so figured it would be an interesting test to say the least! Well for the week leading up to the comp, Flynn honestly went the best he has ever gone on the flat, his 'few lengthened strides' in trot felt great, however we did have one moment where I asked him to lenghten canter down the longside & he got a bit excited & his knees came past his ears. Only problem was that the next movement was a 15m circle. Hahaha that was fun! Had a quick jump the night before the comp as I don't tend to jump at home, figure he knows how to do it, no point over jumping his little leggies...
Day of comp, lovely, lovely day. Tootled off down to Adult Ride in the truck (man I love my truck hahaha) & parked up so Flynn could stand in the shade. Had to get there early as judge was using my truck as the judges box, so Flynn had to stand around for a little while before we were on. Got him ready for the dressage & hopped on & started warming up. He was going so nicely, quite like he was showing off actually, felt great! Then it all turned to custard when we entered the dressage arena. He dropped behind my leg & napped the whole way up the centreline, tried to cut the corner at the top, which resulted in a bit of an argument & then the test went downhill from there. After arguing the whole way round, he then tried to launch into the canter, which resulted in a halt on the spot, which thankfully then sorted him out. He carried on nice enough after that, but our test was well & truly stuffed LOL. Got 59%. Have decided with him being sooo flat, that I might give oats a try at giving him a touch more energy.

Then it was time for the SJing. I stuffed that up too, thought we had a 1.05m class but they decided on the day due to only 2 riders, 1 in the 95 & me in the 1.05m, that we might as well both ride in the 95cm. Sorry Flynn, not much of a warm up there!! Flynn woke up & did a lovely round, however stupid, stupid mother, jumped an extra jump in the jump off! DUH!

Then everyone was nice enough to put the jumps up so that we could have a play over some bigger stuff. Most of the jumps are 1.10, with a couple being 1.15m. Sadly my position is very lacking, so its time for me to bite the bullet & get some lessons. I'm just not stable enough and would hate for it affect Flynn anymore than it does LOL As you can see we got in a little close to the blue upright LOL still can't believe he cleared it