Sunday, 20 January 2013

A Snowy Adventure

Yesterday, we showed you lunging, but today we ventured out to have a nice ride in the snow. Thomas loved it, and was lovely and fresh - he felt like he was full of spirit when the cold air hit him!

Here's a photo for you:

As you can see, Thomas is more keen to get going across the fields than posing for the camera!

Saturday, 19 January 2013

So What Snow...?

As most of the UK has seen snow in the last few days, it was disappointing that the BSJA show was cancelled today, however it couldn't be helped...

I was working away in London two days this week, and with snow earlier in the week, it had been difficult to get Thomas out and exercised. Fortunately, our yard has a small indoor arena, great for lungeing. This week Thomas has been lunged by both Andrew and I, and with the snow looking set to stay, we were forced back into the inside to exercise.

We haven't done much lungeing together, but as we need to carry on the road to getting fit, I decided to lunge in the side reins to encourage Thomas to work properly, and from behind. He settled into things well and went very nicely. Here's a short video that Andrew took for me:


We're actually hoping for a little more snow overnight to be able to ride out - sticking firmly to the soft snow to avoid slipping. So maybe tomorrow, we'll have a nice photo of us in the snow :)

Andrew and I also walked our black lab this morning, who loved the snow. We saw some beautiful sights, all very pretty and white. I took this as it looks very pretty, but shows the sky is still full of snow!



Monday, 14 January 2013

Another great day out for Bedlington, Blyth & District!

Sunday 13th January 2013
Centurion EC, Durham

The riding club has been trying really hard over the last year or so to boost member, with now over 100 members, and a good junior section too. With Winter League competitions currently running across Area 2, the Bedlington, Blyth & District enjoyed another successful weekend!

Entering two team to the Grassroots dressage - no riders with BD points were allowed to enter, the club managed to collect points for the league across both.


Bedlington & Blyth Foxy Trotters had 3 members meaning that they had no score to drop coming into the results - but they proved they didn't need it coming 1st overall! Bedlington & Blyth Charlston Chicks also did well, with having 4 members, and came 4th across all the teams entered. To top the day off, a 3 member junior team was also entered, and the Bedlington & Blyth Bosonova Babes came 3rd in their section.

A great day was had by all! Well done to everyone!

Thomas' Performance
With a fantastic result last week, Thomas and I were keen to repeat this performance. We had a very pleasing outing, although not as strong as the previous week, but still very good result being marked by a BD list judge - we scored 63.2% and came 8th overall.

We also took part in some indoor XC training on Saturday for the riding club. It was great fun, having a lesson with 3 other members, and having a go at jumping corners, bounces, brushes, narrows etc - we even jumped a Novice height corner which was a great feeling, even if a little nerve wracking! We've got a short video, taken by Andrew from the sideline, of us coming over a small triple bounce, using a water tray to simulate a ditch.


Next weekend, we've got some show jumping, so we'll be sure to write a report on that too!

Monday, 7 January 2013

A Winning Start to 2013!

It's been a good few weeks since I last posted - that's mainly because throughout December, Thomas and I haven't really done very much. As the winter nights drew in, the countdown for 21st December (winter solstice) was well and truly on, plus with all the rain, it just wasn't practical to be riding on an evening. We kept going with some nice weekend hacks, and did occasionally venture into the arena once a week.

However, with having some time off work in between Christmas and New Year, it was important to get the right start for bringing Thomas back into work... Starting with a couple of SJ classes at a local Riding Club show. This was the first thing Thomas had done in a while and seemed pleased to see somewhere different. We have a couple down in each class, but like I say, we were off, and back on the road toward the 2013 season!

Before Christmas I'd planned my January competitions to make sure I could put in the training and ensure that we do the right competitions - not just because things will run.

It started off with Dressage yesterday (6th January). We couldn't have kicked off 2013 in any better way! Entering into two classes, I made sure I had a couple of practice sessions before, but the hard work really paid off - we came second in the first class (Prelim 1) on a fantastic score of 73.2%. If you'd like to see for yourself, here's a video of the test:

We'd decided to change things in the warm up before the test, so I'm pleased that they paid off. Thomas is easily bored on the flat, so I started my warm up about 2 horses before me - this is around 10-15 minutes before it was my turn. It seems to have worked a treat, as he was still keen and enthusiastic when he entered the arena.

For our second class, Prelim 12, I was a little anxious in case Thomas thought he'd done all the hard work, and wasn't interested in another test, but it seems I was wrong. As we only had about a 20 minute wait, I put a nice warm rug on him, and when the horse before me went in, I started to warm up again. This again proved to work.

We came first on 75.6% - almost 5% ahead of the field. This was our first red rosette together, so I was very proud and pleased with Thomas. Again, there's a video if you'd like to watch:
 

And here's a nice photo at home with the rosettes - Thomas was already back on the wagon in his warm rug by the time the results came out!

Now that we are back in training and preparation, we hope to have many more posts and updates for you, starting next week, with some Indoor XC training and Team Dressage for our Riding Club.