State Show Jumping Champs
I entered two classes but since it's show jumping I had no idea when they would start. I was on the road at about 8.15 and arrived with ample time to hurry up and wait. I took Henry for a walk, to try and let him see the sights in a hope he would be calmer than at Capel. He was fine until he saw a group of cyclists out on the road and he lost his mind a tiny bit. I popped him back in the yard and my friend used her horse whispering power and he chilled right out.
I walked the course and it was tight and twisty but the jumps were 70-80 so nothing too crazy. When I hopped on to warm up Henry was a little bit tense but so much more relaxed than at Capel. I timed my warm up quite quickly and he kept his head while we waited to go into the ring.
Henry was tense in the ring, and I didn't really have a half halt. He jumped confidently but was too fast so we just tipped a rail. The class was one where you get called back in to do a jump off over a different, raised course but with the rail we didn't jump off. It wasn't our best round but it was ok, we got around!
I took Hen back to his yard and let him relax before our next class. We had ages, so I caught up with Andrew for lunch (he was stewarding), walked around the shops and watched the big ring jump. Those jumps are huge!!!
Finally I walked my next course and it was so much more flowing and I knew it would suit us better. Henry was his normal, lovely, relaxed self and I was so relieved! No bucking makes for a happy horse and rider. He jumped well in the warm up and it was quite warm so I kept it short and went into the ring ASAP.
I got a good canter and came into jump one. He flew, was right there with me and from the the course flowed beautifully. I knew things were going well coming into fence 6AB, but I kept my head and focus and we finished the course clear. The whole round Henry was on his game, waiting when I asked, jumping when I put my leg on and 100% ready to jump the moon. It was a brilliant round, I rode so well and Henry was incredible. I was thrilled when we came out.
We headed back to the float to grab a drink while the class finished and caught the last few rounds while we waited for the jump off. There were no clears that I saw, out of a huge class. In the end only 3 of us were called back. We were on of 33 in a massive class to jump clear. We had to ride in draw order so Iw as last to go. I was very nervous, but I stamped the nerves down. I knew the jumps were the biggest we ave jumped at a comp but Henry wouldn't notice. I just had to ride the horse.
I watched the two riders before me go, one had a rail and the second was eliminated. All we had to do was go clear, I didn't have to ride fast. We had such a good chance to win, but I didn't think about it.
Andrew was judging but he had someone else judge my round to be totally impartial. I went in, picked up the canter and came to t he first fence. Henry flew over it, and the next one, and then the next one! We came to the second last jump, a huge vertical, the one jump I thought we would most likely have a rail at. Things were perfect though and Henry gave it plenty of room, then we were coming tot he last and Henry took a flier over it! We landed, clear, under time and we had done it!
Ecstatic only partially covers how I felt. We won a huge class, with a jump off. He was the only horse in our class to jump double clear, it was the biggest we have jumped so far, and we won! The feeling was incredible. I teared up a little, and I couldn't stop telling Henry how wonderful he is. He was pretty casual about the whole thing.
I won a tub of supplements, a hat, a saddle blanket with the class embroidered on it, and a voucher, and we got to do a lap of honour which we both think is pretty cool. I also had a photo withe Andrew since he was the judge and can't wait to see it.
When we got back to the float I gave Henry a cool shower and all the treats while I rang my coach to tell her all about it. She was pretty proud of us too.
It's funny, when I woke up yesterday I was so nervous about going, worried that HEnry would be upset still after Capel. He was a little, but he was his usual self before my second round so it was perfect to take him before Brigadoon next weekend. So much of me just didn't want to go yesterday, then when Iw as there I thought about going home before I jumped again but in the end I am so pleased I stuck it out. This win feels incredible, and so deserved. We both work so hard, and to win at the state champs is an incredible boost!
|This is from Patrons, but he was this good this weekend|