April 27, 2009

Waikanae ODE: Xev

I was so pleased with Xev's first eventing start at Clareville (PreTraining) that I decided to upgrade her to Training for Waikanae. It proved to be a very tough outing, but a great experience for her. The dressage test was actually a Novice horse trails one (B2), and we still don't have our buttons sorted for lengthening, but Xev did seem to appreciate the specialist surface and was a lot more balanced in her 15m circles than she has been on grass.
The arenas were really dusty, and she was sneezing heaps! So I might have to see if there is something I can do about that? Not too good for the poor girl. But she went very kindly throughout her test and I was pleased.
Xev did a super clear showjumping round. And within the time too (the SJ time had been quite tight for the previous class, so I wasn't sure how we would go as the footing was slippery and I wanted to take nice big wide corners, but her huge strides must have eaten up the ground quick enough!).
I was a bit nervous about the crosscountry.. not the height of the fences, but just the technicality. But I really had nothing to worry about. She is positively made for crosscountry and just gets into a stride and goes.
We finally got into water as well. There was a rolltop, then a stride, then into the water. Xev came around the corner and saw the water behind the rolltop and wasn't keen. When we reapproached I did the 1-handed cowboy trick and she got over then landed at a halt and walked ever so slowly in the water. But she got in, and I am confident that now she'll be sweet with water. All just mileage. She was a real dude with the bank too - did it in a bounce and flew off the other end!
She pulled up with a bit of a puff, but only for a few minutes - so it's good to see that her fitness is at the right level too. Xev finished up just out of the ribbons, but I am just so stoked with how she is coping with everything I try her at.