Poplar and Fair Hill Recap
Hey everyone! So much has happened over the past couple months. They have been busy and exciting with a few ups and downs.
Hoosier and I went to our first CIC** at Poplar Place Farm at the end of March. I was very excited and felt more than prepared. That being said, that weekend had its ups and downs. The first down was dressage. Hoosier was fantastic in the warm-up, but when we got in the ring he sucked up and would not go forward. We did not put in the best dressage test I know we could have. Yes, Hoosier does have ornery moments despite how good he is most of the time. Missy described it best by saying “You both have worked very hard on your dressage, and it’s getting better, but today he just didn’t rise to the occasion.”
Our next phase was stadium. It was phenomenal. It was our first double clear round at this level, and let me tell you…that was a good feeling! All of Missy’s hard work on fixing my body and getting Hoosier to jump straight so he can use all of his power and scope paid off.
The last day of course was cross-country, which some might say was the downfall of my weekend, but I won’t write it off as a bad round because to me it wasn’t. We started out great! He was feeling strong and powerful and made nothing of our first real sunken road. He really jumped everything well until we came to the third to last fence, which was a combination to a skinny. I came in underpowered and he went right and I went left at the skinny. It was all my fault and I knew it was, even before I hit the ground. It wasn’t a bad fall by any means, just a silly rider error that caused a minor fall. I thank God that it wasn’t a major mistake that could have gotten one of us hurt.
I did leave Poplar disappointed in myself, but not at all in my horse. I left feeling I am more ready for this level. Missy told me to go ahead and sign up for Fair Hill’s CIC**. I went back up to Pennsylvania and trained with Missy two weeks before the big show so she could put me together.
Our Fair Hill dressage was much better; we shaved almost 10 points off my Poplar score. I struggled with stadium, but Hoosier tried really hard even though we pulled two rails. They were both my fault. I had a hard time getting my rhythm together, going from such a small warm-up area to a bigger jump arena. These are still things I’m learning as a rider.
Last but not least was cross-country. It was amazing! Hoosier got a little stuck at the water. It was a bounce in, to a sizeable jump in the water on a bending line, 4 strides to a maxed-out table. I think the bounce in surprised him a bit. He jumped in powerfully and then I think he thought there was going to be another stride before the drop. He didn’t drop in as powerfully as I would have liked him to. Again, this is something I will keep in mind for next time. I need to keep after him to stay light and powerful. Overall, I was glowing. I had finished my first CIC**.
So where do I go from here? Well, unfortunately Hoosier is going to have his tie-back surgery. I know we can’t go any higher until I have it done. He has too big of a heart to ask any more of him until the surgery is done. I’m a very nervous mother about this and really hope and pray that this is the best thing for him and that he comes out of it a new and improved eventing machine! I will keep you posted on when he has the surgery, hopefully it will be in the next month.
Meanwhile, Zeke is back in work now that I’m home, and the plan for now is Novice at MayDaze. We realized that one year ago, during Rolex weekend, Zeke jumped his first fence.
Until next time, safe rides!