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Event Report - BE100 at BCA, 2nd October 2013

03rd October 2013
Wednesday 2nd October and it was nearly three and a half weeks since our last run and lackluster performance at Goring Heath. This time I was very determined to do well!

In the preceding few weeks I hadn't done a massive amount of preparation apart from an excellent cross country demonstration with international event rider Nick Gauntlett at Blenheim Horse Trials. You can watch my videos from the demo over on my YouTube channel, I had both standard and headcam in action! This training was really great and gave me a lot of trust in Trad jumping some really tough corners, skinnies and angles!

I've also been continuing with the flatwork lessons with Jenny Gray-Wallis my super Equine Spinal Therapist (visit the website please) / trainer. Although it might not always show at competitions both Trad and I have learnt lots, mainly about going FORWARDS!!!!

So BCA was the next stop and our penultimate event of the 2013 season! A mid week event always brings about differences and unfortunately for me it meant no Lisa or Mum as they were both working, however luckily Jenny and Dad were able to come and assist with Trad. Early times led to an early start and leaving the yard at 7am... yawn! I managed to find time on the Monday to walk the cross country so on arrival we had time to grab a Charlie Coffee (the best on the circuit) and walk the SJ in the brand new outdoor arena.

For once in the dressage warm up we had plenty of time and Jenny got us going really well. I have been spoilt to have Jenny with me as she gives me a 20-30 minute lesson just like when we're at home so I feel much more relaxed but also prepared. The test itself we thought was ok and a marked improvement on Goring's performance, however the judge didn't seem to agree giving me some 4's! The sheet is one for the bin! But I do know I need to improve my accuracy on the letters and movements. Have a look below at the video to see what you think...

After dressage it was a quick kit change (we're getting good at them now) and over to the new SJ arenas. Warming up for SJ again Jenny was on hand and the plan we have worked out for Trad is to get him going very forward in the canter and then not chase him into the fences. When riding him like this he is very good and doesn't chip in any late strides but it was going to be a bit more tricky to turn him in the slightly tight outdoor arena.

However off we went, as positive as I could and we managed a great clear round, only touching one or two! I'm really starting to enjoy the SJ now and feel like the stops from earlier in the season are starting to fade away. Thanks to Dad stepping in for Lisa with the video you can watch the round below...

Onto cross country and yet another quick change which is definitely the best way as stops me having time to worry too much. In regards to the course there was only one fence I was worried about and that was the trakehner which was big, with a massive ditch and set in a hedge row - all the things we've had issues with previously at Purston and Goring Heath. Apart from that there was nothing that Trad should even have looked at but with our track record I'm never quite sure!

Over at warm up Trad was ok, chipped in a few times but jumped a few better once I got him going. So with the revs up we were into the start box and away very aggressively, as I have found I really need to get him forward straightaway. On the course there wasn't much to report as Trad jumped everything really well!

Coming down to the trakehner he started to get on his forehand and running a bit too much which has previously led to him stopping/ducking out so this time I put into action the plan Jenny had devised for us, which was to use the corner to get him back underneath me, gain control and then ride him forward. The good news was it worked and he jumped it and the rest of the course clear! Yay double clear!!

Take a look at the headcam video below for your own opportunity to ride the BE100 course.

Next up is our last event of the season at Pulborough, fingers crossed we can kick on again and finish on another high.

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