Julie Braddon, BHSAI Int SM (Regd) PC Accredited Trainer

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Well, today was worth waiting for ....!

Posted by: Julie - 27 May 2012 20:33

My week has been really busy & after Maddy managed to pull a shoe off last Friday & therefore not getting her final hill work & gallop, I was feeling a little bit 'have I done enough?', 'is she fit enough?' even though I've put the work in over the last few months, when things don't go to plan I get a bit concerned .... I really need not have worried &, as I'm told quite often by those who know me best, I should believe in myself a little more!

As it worked out, I managed to teach all my Saturday clients during the week which freed up Saturday afternoon for Cross Country course walking!  Jack & I headed off to Pontispool with Max - my border collie - to watch Laura & Mr B showjump & run across country & get my BE100 course walked in preparation for today.  It was great to see Laura back out eventing & Mr B didn't, as ever, give her the easiest of rides, but I thought she did a really good job with what was a very difficult situation.

I dragged Jack around the course & drove home riding every fence!  By walking it the day before it meant I didn't need to stable overnight to do it, I just had to leave home at 5.30am instead!

So as the alarm went off at 4am, with the weather looking stunning through the bedroom window, I leapt out of bed to get Maddy loaded & the others turned out.  As we drove down the A303 the lorry began to make some VERY strange noises - so guess where I need to go tomorrow morning!  However, it got us there &. after a delay to the start of the dressage as our section's dressage judge turned up half an hour late, we finally got under way.  Dressage is not Maddy's forte.  She's incredibly difficult to ride as can either be soft & relaxed or tense & tight but you never know which you're going to get until you get on! We got through it, I was actually quite pleased (it could've been an awful lot worse) but, as is fairly normal for us, the judge didn't like it & we came away with a score of 43.  Most of my section had scores in the 30's so it put us a bit out of touch.

When we went to warm up to show jump, she put in a very naughty stop at a practice fence which is something she's not done for a VERY long time. As it happened, it was the best thing she could've done for me! It made me sit up & ride much more positively & we went on to produce a cracking clear round that even Russell was impressed with!!!

The cross country had a very tricky fence at fence 3, a downward slope to a deep ditch & then up a slope to a roll top on an angle.  I'd heard it was causing problems for people very early on & although there was an alternative to the ditch, I decided to go the direct route because, after all, if I am going to upgrade this year, this should be a walk in the park! 

Maddy didn't disappoint!  She did have a look at the ditch but went when I asked & continued around the course jumping easily, made nothing of the combination through the first water (4 parts with a corner fence out) & just jumped & jumped!  On one or two occasions, I did have to question my braking system - I might have to find some more from somewhere!!  But we finished clear & well inside the time which she & I have never done, we've always struggled to make the time, but it seems that Aldon 3 Day Event last October has taught her how to gallop!  What a buzz!! And to top it all, finished 15th!  Very thrilled!!

So tonight I'm sat with my glass of wine, one very happy bunny, & planning our next move!!  I can't wait!!!  In the meantime, I've just submitted Millie's first unaffilliated Dressage entry ..........

 

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