Gidgegannup Dressage and Show Jumping

The big day finally arrived and it was an early start! My dressage time was 9.22 and with a pre ride as part of my plan I needed to arrive just after 7. Rosie made sure to get me out of bed on time though.

Arriving early meant ewe got an excellent parking spot over looking the arenas, and we got set up for the day with  plenty of  time  to  spare. Henry was pretty chill as usual and when I hopped on he was all for it. I made sure he was truely forward and he worked down well, relaxing after a short while and we were able to head back to the float with the knowledge that Henry knew what was up.
I like parties!

After fixing my plaits up, adding the last finishing touches to the both of us and  generally faffing about, I got on with about 20 minutes to warm up. I timed it perfectly because I  had enough time to trot a couple of laps of the first  warm up area before Iw as moved to the second warm up area next to the  arenas.

Henry wasn't fussed by the change, especially  as he has been in the main area before and we went right back to  work. I made sure his transitions were prompt, that he was  forward and that  his  shoulder were  manoeuvrable and we were ready to go in  at my  time, which is exactly when we went in.

I trotted both directions around the arena, and he stayed with me, and he remained with me for the entire test. Our first  centre line was straight and I felt our test was accurate  over all. HE picked up both canter lines, something we have really  struggled with in the past. If he tried to put his head up, I quickly flexed him and told him to keep it together and he did. He was so brilliant, I was smiling the whole time.

I came out absolutely thrilled. For the first time I really understand why  people like dressage. It was fun! Henry got all the carrots and pats. I can't describe how proud of him I am. I didn't look  at  the scores until  we had done  all 3 phases, but we  scored 26.6 and were in third!

We had a few hours to wait for show jumping so I hung around reading  a bit  before they  opened the XC to walk. I was pretty excited to see what they had  in  store  for us  and  I wasn't  disappointed with  a few new  jumps  and  interesting combinations.  It's  going t o  be  a  good  test and  a  lot of fun,  I  just  need  to  remember to  ride.

Show jumping  was in a small  arena  and  it  was a  tight,  twisty  course with  3 related  lines. The  time  was tight  and I had  a firm  plan for my warm up and  course. Warming up I made sure Henry was  forward and practiced getting him  off my leg.  Every warm up jump we did I  made a decision about   and  it made a big  difference. Henry  was jumping  super.

When  I  went in  to  do my  course  I  walked in  past  the  double to the judge, then  trotted past another related  line before  picking  up t he  canter  to  come  into fence  1. This  meant that Henry has  seen the  whole arena  and most of the  fences before we began.

Our course  was really good,  I  made decisions into  every fence  and felt like  I rode forward. We  need  to  work on  landing on  the  correct lead at him more  because  that part is  a bit sticky and will help with getting a  faster  time.  Fence 4   was  a 4 stride  related  line  to the double,  and I just came in a  little quiet  and deep  to  4,  meaning that when Henry got  to  5B his  stride as a little long and strung out and he  tapped  the rail with a   back leg. He jumped the rest clear thought  and we  finished with  one rail and a few time penalties because time was so  tight.

I was disappointed but the round  was smooth and felt good. The things that  need  fixing should  come quickly,  we have  had  lead  changes in  the  past so getting them  pack  shouldn't be  a problem. I  was proud  I  made decisions  and that I really  kept Henry  motoring along. Our rail  and time dropped us back  to 4th, there were not many penalties separating the top 5!

All in all I was super proud of our performance on day one. He felt like a seasoned horse and tried his heart out. With just  XC left  to go I was enjoying being back out eventing and really  looking forward to galloping around the course!


  1. Congrats on two good phases. You guys look good out there together


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