Expensive Combined Training today. We almost turned around to go home on the way to Bradwall as the lorry twice got hit by falling branches dropping out of the trees due to the high winds. The cross course looked superb, beautifully decorated with spring flowers, but the rain was very heavy all day and we had late XC times at 5 pm., Captain and Ruby both did a super dressage 31 and 26 despite the weather conditions, it was so bad this was the first time I have done dressage in a rain coat, Ruby & Captain also coped brilliantly with the judges windscreen wipers going back and forth!!!
Both horses were in the last ten to SJ and the ground had deteriorated in front of the fences, neither horse has jumped out of ground like this before and consequently lack of experience showed with Ruby having 4 rails although one my fault as the judges for some odd reason rang the bell just as I came into fence 2, thinking there was a problem I went to pull up, then as nothing came over the tannoy, I kicked on and had the rail, cantering past the judges I shouted “can I carry on?” no reply, so I jumped the next a bit wildly and had that too! Captain had 3 rails he seemed to tire as he went on.
So that was decision re the XC made we withdrew and home we went , once we had been towed off by the tractor. I guess the horses might have learnt lots by going XC in the mud but maybe it was best to save that education on a day when they aren’t drawn almost last to go.
Better home safe and sound, lorry and my lovely horses all in one piece.
I hate withdrawing always makes me feel a bit of a whimp, but with two young horses it seemed a sensible decision. Although I did spend the long journey home half wishing I had ran them!!
We have just heard early Sunday morning they cancelled the second day of competition so my decision now seems a very wise one!
Below movies and photos are my horses very muddy SJ boots, Ruby’s lovely dressage test which put her in second place, she would have won if we had pulled off a double clear. Also Captains SJ round.