Last weekend I headed further afield to Twesledown for the 3rd or 4th leg of the AT classics. I’d entered the 90 and was super happy to see I was on late afternoon so no super early morning for me- for a horsey person you’d think I’d be ok for early mornings but you’d be wrong and anything earlier than 5.30 makes me act like a witch!
I’d already seen a video of the course on the fb page and it looked challenging but on a par with a couple of others I’d competed. And then I walked it!! For me it was he most challenging 90 I’d done with some lines you had to decide on prior to riding it and some beefy fences. Size doesn’t bother me too much with Chino but he has the attention span of Dory and I’m not always clear with my messages so it could have been a recipe for disaster!
Anywho, the dressage came and went with no issues. In fact it was the best we had done on quite undulating ground and despite the score being quite high, when I compared to the rest over the two days all tests appeared to be marked a lot higher than you would normally see so I felt pleased with my 36.5.
Turns out I thought too soon and we got as far as fence one when Chino decided that it was just too much and thought it easier to just demolish his way through it and not even attempt to jump! T**t!! Now as much as we all like to stay calm in these situations I did get really mad with him as there was just no reason for it other than him being a tit! Second time to it and no bother and all the way round he didn’t put a foot wrong until the last fence when we knocked it so 8 faults in the bag. I came out annoyed which husband couldn’t understand and all I got was ‘but he’s a baby!!’ No, he’s six and been competing for 2 years, that behaviour is not a baby mistake so don’t make excuses!!
I went with the intention of being competitive and feeling we had a chance and it all went Pete Tong. I do sometimes think eventing probably isn’t the thing for me as I can’t stand getting things wrong and let’s face it- how often do all 3 phases come together at the right time?! For me never it would appear!
To make matters worse, at this point I didn’t know my dr score and I was convinced I’d heard the commentator say I’d scored 46.5 so I was seriously p’d off and questioning what I was doing so wrong. I was then umming and ahhing over whether to take him xc and save him for this weekend until husband came back and told me to stop trying to listen to the commentators as I was wrong!
With Chino then saddled back up with headed to xc where we had over 45 min wait due to course hold ups and a late start! It was then my turn…countdown near the end, we entered the box and off we went at a rate of knots! We flew over the first 5 easy peasy and then we got to what should have been a simple log on a mound however, Chino had other ideas! Back to his Dory moment, despite a flick of the whip down the shoulder to say wake up, looking at everything but the fence and by the time he then saw it it was too late and our first ever 20 penalties were added! After a sharp slap on the buttocks he proceeded to leap not just the log but the whole damn mound!!! It literally felt like the ground had disappeared from under us we were air bound for that long!
After that little mishap we flew round, water combination, log to drop, step to tight turn and skinny, another water and finally a tricky line combination at the bottom of a hill which had caused a few issues for others. We were stopped on course at this point and had to wait a bit and I have to say, starting on a run down hill to a decent sized log pile isn’t a pleasurable feeing!!
He really was a superstar although I seriously, seriously need to get a handle on my timings- we were one second within the time limit before we incurred too fast penalties and we had the stop which technically should have pushed us close if not over the time limit so I clearly have no idea how fast I’m travelling!
Back at the car we get a quick pack away given it was nearly 7pm and we had a near 2 hour journey home. I was feeling a little better about the whole day in that I would have rather incurred the xc faults in that day after having a mare in the sj as opposed to being on a good score going into the xc and then screwing up.
Half way home I checked the results and I’d come 14th!!!! Turns out the sj and xc had caused problems for as many in my section as it had in the others over both days. It’s not often you finish with nearly 65 penalties and come home with that position! That said I do appear to be stuck on 14th position at the mo and would very much like to move up even if it’s one place!!
Perhaps this weekend at Solihull will be our chance although I am starting to brick it as I entered the 100!! In my moment of invinsibility I had figured the 100 wasn’t much different to 90 and so why not give it a go! Now I’m not so sure and I think I’m gonna need more than brace pants…adult nappies perhaps!!
I’m sure my next update will be full of the woes of Solihull so look out for the next one!!
For now, toodle pip 😘