Monday, June 28, 2010

Room for Improvement at Rubicon

Photos by GRCPHOTO

Well this post is a little late, as I have been super busy in the month of June. Since my family was at the beach, I headed down to Leesburg for the Rubicon Farm Horse Trials early Saturday morning alone. I was perfectly on schedule, however, was apparently careless while putting in Zoomer's little studs for dressage, since we were in a grass ring. I'm not sure whether my hand slipped or Zoomer moved, but regardless, we had a miscommunication leading to a smashed pointer finger on my right hand...which wasn't the real problem. The real problem was I couldn't get it to stop bleeding and had to put my white gloves on! Luckily, I had bandaids in the trailer, and went through a few before resorting to band aid plus vetwrap. It worked to make the blood not go through, however it limited the movement of the finger. I headed up to dressage not quite on schedule, and discovered after I trekked up the entire field and got to the warmup that I forgot my bridle number. Ugh. So we trotted back to get it, and then returned to warm up in the intense heat. Warm up was ok, and the test was not our best. I had a blonde moment when I began the test, since I discovered I was riding a test I hadn't ridden before just the night before. I rehearsed it over and over, but I went down centerline, turned right, and then had no idea what it was! My subconscious saved me, leading me through the movements correctly even though I couldn't have said the test aloud right then. 38.7 was the result, which put us in 9thb of 20.
After a short break, we prepared for the jumping phases. We went through stadium with a great ride, not missig a spot or being too strong, but pulled 2 rails. Normally I blame myself for our rails, but this day I think Zoomer was just feeling a little careless. Cross country had a rough start for us. The course was a well built course of many gallop jumps, most well under normal prelim height and width, with a few technical, challenging questions and 2 full height jumps. The first fence was pretty close to the start box, which is not unusual, but today Zoomer was more forward than usual. He hit the first jump very hard, so between the first and second jumps, we slowed to a trot to make sure he didnt hit himself too bad -- still sound, so off we went. We went around the course perfectly by the scoreboard, but Zoomer's over enthusiasm didn't fade throughout the ride. He was very careless over the smaller jumps, hitting many of them whether we were galloping or in a canter. He did not hit the 2 large fences, and showed great accuracy through the tough combinations, and no fear at anything, as usual. We came in with a few time penalties, probably due to our trot break at the beginning, so no worries about those. We ended up 5th of the 20, and had we not trotted and gotten those time penalties, would have been 3rd. Certainly not a bad day!

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