Sunday was the Area 5 BRC SJ competition at Solihull where I'd entered in the 90 individual.
I think it was the first time ever that I was actually fully relaxed and not a nervous flutter in sight. I did have however, hunger flutters and as soon as I possibly could I was off in search of food!
The competition consisted of 2 rounds, 3 if you jumped a double clear. Round one was in the indoor and having walked the course it was a pretty easy course, 2 doubles and a couple of tight lines coming off the walls to a couple of uprights but nice and flowing and nothing scary…apart from the white barriers that caused Chino some concern in the warmup ring!!
He did super well in all. Needed extra leg into the first fence but jumped nicely all the way round until the last fence where he went spooky looking at the wall filler (we have one at home but this was shaped differently!!!!!!) and had the front pole down. It wasn't until looking back at the video that I realised he actually came back to trot! Funny how you don't recall these things happening when you're in the moment. This is why I love videos of my performances as you can go back and evaluate where things went wrong or in fact right and from that improve.
We had a long wait until round 2 and then the heavens opened but being the clever little bee I am I had been prepared and brought his outdoor rug to keep him dry!
Anywho, eventually the last competitor was in- me!
I think Chino decided to leave his brain in the trailer for this round. He'd been a bit temperamental in the warmup but nothing compared to the idiocy demonstrated in this round.
Coming to fence 1 and the banner on the fence had obviously come alive causing him to jump away from it and taking us completely off our line and fence 1 came down followed by fence 2 which appeared to be the bogey fence for a lot of people. Then he had part 1 of the first double down after scurrying away from the scary sign again! Another spook out of a different corner but luckily he managed to pick up his feet until fence 7 when we were on the most perfect stride and he had a melt down and tried to fit in another but was then literally under the jump, realised his mistake so slammed the breaks on, attempted to jump taking the poles with him but finished with a flourish with a kicked up back end!
Onwards we proceeded clearing 8 nicely until the final double where a few before had had faults due to the filler in the front. Knowing chino backs off I planned to kick on going faster than I would normally but thinking that by the time he's slowed to look at it we'll be the correct pace. Turns out it made no difference and he knocked it flying anyway and then proceeded to jump part 2 cleanly. So we finished the round on 20 faults!!! A score that would make any cricket team proud I'm sure!!
I couldn't be mad at him though. He's not a show jumper at the best of times- too lazy! For some reason though he's become really spooky in the last 2 months. He has gone from being calm and nothing scaring him at all to now being scared of his own feed bucket!! He's jumpy in the field, wary when hacking out, jumping and xc schooling he now really looks at the jumps whereas before he used to just pop them easy and now when competing there will be something he doesn't like and try and spin and bolt. Not sure what has caused this so unless it's just part of him growing up I don't know?!
This weekend is Archie boy's first show! Exciting! Practice has been bumpy to say the least and I hope to god he doesn't try what he did on Saturday otherwise the only person that could keep up with him is someone from the Jamaican sprint team!! He's fantastic with voice commands and he's starting to understand pressure on the bit when we need to transition down so I'm hopeful we will get round the ring in one piece!!
I'll do a little write up on his first show so check back to see how we got on!
Toodle pip 😘