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Event Report - UA PN (100) at Aston le Walls, 5th April 2014

06th April 2014
First event of the season… New year… New approach? Well not as such but I’m feeling much more confident this season after an educational year in 2013.

Following some pre-season planning with super friend, trainer, groom and spinal therapist Jenny we decided to try and avoid the worse of the winter into spring weather so waited for April and to go for a low key event to start with.

Aston le Walls unaffiliated fitted the bill perfectly so that’s what we went for as we knew the dressage & show jumping would be on the new surface and the Cross Country ground is always pretty good whatever the weather!

Dressage was as predicted on the new MASSIVE outdoor arena, however with four 40m x 20m dressage arenas on it the warm up area was a little on the tight side which meant Trad didn’t warm up very well and we both struggled to settle. Fortunately just before the test he started to settle and during the test he was ok. We scored 39 which put us in the middle of the pack. I haven’t got my sheet yet (waiting for it to be sent out) but was probably a fair score. I know for sure that I still need to control my upper body more and sit up a lot straighter.

Show jumping went well with yet another clear round – well done Trad!!

I got a little ahead of him on a few occasions and I know I need to practice my SJ more and let the fences come to me but on the whole felt very good.

Finally, the Cross country… Well I’m very pleased to say there is nothing to report really as it was completely incident free!! Trad gave me a brilliant run around, taking me into all the fences without much need for kicking at all.

Two minor incidents were a little bit of backing off coming up to the fence in front of the water, but I felt dealt with this quicker than last year so no stop. The only other incident was Trad & I nearly running over some chap and his dog who were right in the middle of the track, however a bit shouting made him dive for cover! Apologies for any swearing on the video:

In the end we finished on our dressage score of 39, just outside of the rosettes in 11th place, all in all the almost perfect result from the first event of the season.

Feedback from Jenny after watching the videos via Twitter was as follows:

Dressage – a bit quick still. Good energy but if you brought your body up & leg under you, you could control the speedy bits with your body.

Show jumping - much improved, good energy again, and kept travelling so even when a bit close, still thinking forwards so jumped well.

Cross Country - looked really good. Body gets quite forward over the fences, so if you could be more upright and not oversold, then if he is sticky like at the water, you are not in front of the movement so it's easier to ride him forward to the fence.

Our next event (Mattingley) isn’t going to be for a few weeks yet due to busy weekends photographing and Trad & my Dad performing their role as mounted stewards at the local point to point on Easter Saturday.

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