March 27, 2009

SJ Practise

Took out the 2 boys today who didn't go and do cross-country at Te Marua. Have a show on Sunday and just wanted a quick tune-up for Beau and Neo. Beau is going really nicely at the moment and starting to go forward without constant encouragement, making transitions much tidier.

He seems to be completely cool with the fillers now and has stopped overjumping them, and just cruises over them. Happy about that. Also finding him quite easy to adjust into single fences.

Through the grid he was a little unsure and feels like he wants guidance from his rider for his striding. More experience should sort that out - because it's always nice to jump a horse who can sort out their own legs. He's using his back end really well over the fences too.

Here is a little snippet of video of Beau through the grid - excuse the rider getting a bit left behind! oops

Neo was very pleased to be out and doing something. Today I put him in the rubber mullenmouth bit. I've ridden around home once before in it and noticed he didn't chew at all - and have been meaning for ages to have a go at jumping in it.

I felt like I had a little less in the way of brakes, but no less steering (and he has a fairly soft mouth, so a lack of brakes isn't really an issue). Will keep this bit on him for a while and see how he does - as he seems more relaxed in it. He was jumping nicely today and going through the grid fantastically (see 2nd pic below where I get totally left behind and he just looks after me, what a good boy).

I hiked the grid up a bit more (measuring around 1.30). It's by far the biggest fence he's done and he felt perfectly happy jumping it, but his front end just wasn't as tidy/up through the shoulder.. so I decided to leave it at that and just be happy with how he's doing. Next step for him really needs to be some groundwork to improve his lateral response, he's still a horse who will lean into my leg rather than move away from it.

All-up I'm happy with what I got out of today and can't wait to get some showjumping done this weekend.