Thursday, April 7, 2011

Mitzi is a Genius!

I was feeling rather fidgety on Wednesday: it was a beautiful day, and horse show season is starting...  So I did what any other person would do.  I posted on Facebook that I was feeling fidgety.  Mitzi, genius that she is, commented back that it was time to go jump the big jumps.  Sounded like a good idea to me!

I got to the barn earlier than usual, took care of a couple things that needed doing, and then got Star out.  Of course, after Honorary Big Sister Jen had hosed her off after the hunter pace on Saturday, Star had proceeded to roll, so she was pretty dirty.  Oh, it's also shedding season.  What seemed like a small eternity later, I finally took Star up to the arena and reset jumps.  Everything was still at 2'6" from Sunday, so I shrugged my shoulders and moved everything up to 3'.  I figured if Star could jump a 3' coop from a trot while being spooky at the hunter pace, then she could certainly start out at 3' on her home turf.

I hopped on, and we did W-T-C around the arena and over the cavaletti that were set.  Star was doing well, staying nice and responsive on just the snaffle rein.  I then picked up my curb rein also, and we started with the fun stuff!

We did each of the fences (coop, vertical, square oxer) off an angle a few times each, and then started piecing the line together (it was set as coop-two strides-oxer-one stride-vertical).  I have to admit: even though it didn't look too bad when I set it, EVERY time we came up to that oxer it looked big.  So I decided that to do the whole line, we would do it the "easy way," starting with the coop.  We went through the entire line once, and it was pretty good... but I knew it could be better.  We came through once more, and Star was absolutely perfect - and I felt pretty damn good, too!  I had been trying to work up to being brave enough to come through the other way, but Star was so good that I decided to call it quits for the night, especially since it was starting to get dark.

Mitzi was absolutely right - to clear the fidgets, I just needed to go jump the big jumps!  Okay, so 3' isn't "big," but I'm pretty pleased with it considering I was riding a horse who others seemed to think needed to make a career as a crossrail horse this IEA season, and I haven't really jumped anything "big" since OKC.  Furthermore, it was late summer last year by the time our warm-up jumps were 2'9"... so by warming up over 3'0", we're definitely ahead of where we were last year at this time.

Thanks, Mitzi! 

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