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NEJA Two-Phase - May 31, 2020

Of course, none of us had any idea if we would be able to compete in 2020. I will say that my big goals for the year (which were sitting in an unpublished post from January 2020!) were to keep my horses healthy, happy, sound, to move up to BN with Ellie, and to complete one recognized horse trial at BN. And despite all of the COVID-19 protocols and cancellations over the year, we did meet our goals (mostly). Many of the local barns here in Maine took on the challenge of bringing us safe competitions in 2020. Ellie and I started the year by competing in a little schooling 2-phase and debuting at BN. It went well and it got me excited about the year's possibilities.  We had a great dressage test (placed second in our division) and then had one rail in our show jump course. The rail was totally my fault and for our first ever BN outing, I was pretty excited! We ended up fourth in a mid-sized division. And because I do not remember much else for specifics, here's a big old photo du

Rushing at home :(

So tonight's ride started out well. It was a jumping night. :) We warmed up and Dreamy was really settled into a nice relaxed rhythm. The connection to the bit was good and she was not doing the teeny head toss thing.

I warmed up over a small crossrail. Then we went to an easy gymnastic: 18" vertical, ground pole, 2' crossrail. Each had a stride between. She wants to drift to the left, which is fine, I can correct that. She was a bit sticky, so I did it a couple times each direction. We got a good rhythm and she cantered easily through it.

Then we went to the "big" 2'7" gate. I like this jump. :) She did fine, each direction. Her bascule is such that I get bumped out of the saddle over the fence. I KNOW my leg slips back and I KNOW I need some jumping equitation help! GRRR....it is just like my dressage equitation, as it is all shot to hell from not having had a lesson in 7 years. Oh well, have to fix one thing at a time....

SO, anyway, I then did the combination to the crossrail, to the gate. Did that twice and called it good. She is jumping much better, picking up a nice easy canter both ways, and all that needs help is ME. :)

Then I get the bright idea to try my canter circles. I should have just called it a night and put her up....but NO I have to push myself. Uggg......

And I start to the left, her worst side. Oh boy, we get a nice flat out RUN into the pace each time I ask for the canter. WHY OH WHY does she NOT do this rushing thing at my lessons???? I have to work so hard not to get frustrated. Mostly I feel as though if we only had a RING to work in, these problems would not happen. I HATE THAT!

So I ditch the cantering and just try to get a nice trot in this direction. But she looses her mind momentarily and has to be an idiot. So we do 3 strides of trot, 8 strides of WALK. And halt. And a teeny bit of trotting and HALT. We have not had this type of stress for a long time.

Then I switch direction once I get a halfway decent trot. She is FINE to canter to the right. Of course......

So I figure we better get a left lead canter before I call it a night. I get the bright idea to use the crossrail to get a canter....it works. I trot in and canter out 3 times. The last time her canter is actually quite nice. :)

Dreamy ended up working much harder than I planned on tonight. Oh well. Her own fault. Tomorrow will be a dressage ride in preparation for our SMDA show in Sunday. We have Intro B at 9:23AM and Training 1 at 10:55. HUGE classes.....Intro B has 12 riders and Training 1 has 16. Probably no shot at a ribbon (SIGH). I am such a ribbon ho. I know, I know it is not about the ribbons. ROFL! I will just be happy to break 55% on the Training test. Over 60% for Intro B would be nice. :)

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