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La Gringa
Aug. 16, 2008, 11:02 AM
Is it me or do the jumps in the show jumping arena at Beijing seem a little sub par compared to other olympics? I remember for example the jump designs at Seoul.. they were gorgeous. They have some pretty ones in Beijing, but they really just seem like typical GP jumps... The swiss cheese jump was cool though.

For the Olympics, I always love the jump designs, they often are spectacular. To me this year they seem ho hum...

The cross country course though in eventing was beautiful.. IMO.

What do you all think???:)

Nikki^
Aug. 16, 2008, 12:34 PM
The green gate jump looks really cool but I have to agree that most of the jumps seem bland, airy but bland.
The wall jump looks like a wedge of cheese but I think it's cute.:)
One jump looks like the painters were on a Acid trip.

For the dragon jump, I would've made it like the Shamu jump with huge dragons one each side roaring with big nasty teeth! GRRRR!!!

Kind like:
http://www.saberfire.com/dragons/archivehigh/038.jpg
Have the stands look like Onyx (The dragon) http://www.saberfire.com/dragons/archivehigh/027.jpg
http://farm1.static.flickr.com/17/90393718_2412f308e0.jpg?v=0

Ahh, here we go: http://www.phoenixorion.com/phoenixorion/images2/thumbs/tn_42051.jpg
Perhaps they spent most of the budget on the XC jumps :confused:?

Party Rose
Aug. 16, 2008, 03:03 PM
If I recall correctly Melanie said that Leopoldo and Steve had made MANY trips to Hong Kong to get a feel for the culture, etc... before and during construction of the fences. She also said that (or was it the guy?) in the next rounds, other jumps will be used.

The class that went was a class to just get the horses acclimated to the new arena and they didn't want to flip anyone out. This could be the first year (I don't recall) that they have had this type of class before. Regardless, it's fairly new and I think a really nice gesture.

GreystoneKC
Aug. 16, 2008, 03:14 PM
I did find the jumps beautiful, although a little boring. However I also assumed that there would be bigger, spookier jumps brought out for the upcoming rounds. The multi-coloured plank/wall had to be one of the most intriguing jumps I have ever seen!

I look forwards to seeing what other jumps show up.

Bluehorsesjp
Aug. 16, 2008, 03:39 PM
If I recall correctly Melanie said that Leopoldo and Steve had made MANY trips to Hong Kong to get a feel for the culture, etc... before and during construction of the fences. She also said that (or was it the guy?) in the next rounds, other jumps will be used.

The class that went was a class to just get the horses acclimated to the new arena and they didn't want to flip anyone out. This could be the first year (I don't recall) that they have had this type of class before. Regardless, it's fairly new and I think a really nice gesture.

Party Rose is correct. This first class was just a qualifier to get everyone in the ring and around. It was set pretty soft so everyone could get around. This is the first year they held this class. The germas took it as a schooling round and had uncharacteristic rails.


Be prepared for bigger and more technical courses coming up. And different jumps.
This is from the South China Morning post

"The course designer works to Olympic and FEI guidelines. The course typically includes a water jump, and straight, double and triple combinations, but the style and layout of the jumps is determined by the designers, in this case American Steven Stephens and Leopoldo Palacios of Venezuela. Palacios designed the jumping competition at Sydney 2000. A competition was held to help inspire fence designs and among the winning entries was a fence designed to replicate dim-sum. About 50 fences will be designed and built for the competitions, with many of them featuring distinctive Chinese and Hong Kong landmarks, such as the Great Wall and the Tsing Ma Bridge."

bird4416
Aug. 16, 2008, 03:40 PM
I want to see them jump a replica of the Great Wall.

foursocks
Aug. 16, 2008, 03:46 PM
In the big Olympic issue of COTH a couple of weeks ago it was mentioned that there will be no Great Wall because of its cultural significance- the government did not want the Chinese people to watch as their biggest (literally!) cultural icon fell down or was crashed through. The designers also wanted a rickshaw, but the state nixed that one, too- which is understandable, actually.

I think the designers were up against a lot of politics and given no free rein whatsoever. The end result is something one would expect to see in an authoritarian state where *everything* is political.

La Gringa
Aug. 16, 2008, 04:02 PM
That makes sense, to use the more standard type jumps for the preliminary rounds...

I do hope they amp up the jumps for the final rounds though.. my favorite part of the Olympic Show Jumping is the course and beautful jumps! To watch horses and riders at this level competing over a course that beautiful is very special!

I hope they have a Dragon jump in SJ! They had one in X-C.

linquest
Aug. 16, 2008, 05:23 PM
The green picket fence (2nd to last jump) was scaaaaary! I'm not surprised how often it went down. It looks like you can impale yourself on that thing :dead:

copper1
Aug. 16, 2008, 05:31 PM
I understand Leopoldo is famous for his very airy jumps.

lauriep
Aug. 16, 2008, 08:14 PM
Foursocks has it right. There were many cultural challenges to what they were allowed to do.

DMK
Aug. 16, 2008, 10:12 PM
I do hope they amp up the jumps for the final rounds though..

Final round? I think it's safe to say tomorrow AM will be a very different course and it will get tougher after that.

But it is a scary ring and the heat is a factor, so it made good sense to not finish off the horses before the actual competition started. And best yet, this course safely - and effectively - did some level setting for those not really up to this level of competition. I know that is always a challenge for Olympics course designers versus true qualifiers like WEG and WC, where only the best get in. That's not true in the Olympics, there were horses & riders in that ring that really had no business being there, and hopefully they have a good feel for their true abilities as relates to the demanding nature of the course before they are in over their head.

Steve and Leopald may be bummed that there is no rickshaw jump, but every competitor that has dealt with the dreaded Spruce Meadows bicycle is delighted, I'm sure. ;)

I know the Germans were schooling - everybody was schooling. Al the top countries have been around the block enough to know exactly what to do on this day. So it's not like they were blessed with some uber special knowledge that no one else has... In light of that, I do wonder if it was totally to plan to be so far down in the standings? I'm left believing that either things didn't go quite as good as they hoped but they are far from panicking OR they are just so tired of winning all the team medals, they thought they'd be right sporting and handicap themselves the only way they could before the real competition started. ;)

La Gringa
Aug. 17, 2008, 04:20 PM
I really liked the course today, very technical. That skinny to the water was killer for a lot.

Go USA!

I was kind of cheering on the Norwegians too. I loved that plain gray horse they had with the big head. He jumped so easily... he looks like an old school cavalry mount!!

:winkgrin:

Party Rose
Aug. 19, 2008, 11:28 AM
I think they did a good job with the fences, but I of course would have built some differently.

How about a flat bridge at the front of the water, with a more natural & traditional theme all around it? I would have included a few more concepts like a noodle fence for one, noodles hanging vertically.

The problem then, if they had given me free rein, not a single horse would have even made it to the timers.

I also think that the Great Wall standards were lovely.

Fairview Horse Center
Aug. 20, 2008, 10:30 AM
I think it was strange how some of the jumps were designed to make the horse see a lower jump. The wall with the sky painted on top, and the red X definitely can trick a horse into misjudging. It is an interesting way of designing, but I am not sure I consider that fair. I want a course to test the horse, not trick him.

dressagetraks
Aug. 20, 2008, 10:38 AM
Is the greenery swoopy dragon a jump or a piece of scenery?

I've only watched about 30 minutes total from medal round on rewind, have to squeeze it in odd moments. So far, I haven't seen anybody jump that for that round, but it looks jumpable.

Very cool decoration/fence, whichever it is.

DMK
Aug. 20, 2008, 11:27 AM
That's scenery, or at least so far it has been!

Fairview - there hasn't been too much out there that has tricked the horses. The sky wall most definitely concerned Cedric, a green horse, but he just propped and jumped extra high. Not many horses had that jump down, nor it's related jump. And the diamond in the red fence didn't confuse anyone. Now the tight SIX to a tidy vertical to vertical combination after a 14' water caused more than a little bit of trouble for some, but it usually showed up as a foot in the water for the Americans or some serious miscommunication in the case of making the 6 in the case of the Germans. :lol:

Reports I have heard are that so far the riders are very pleased with the courses, but as tough as Palacios and Stephens are, and as creative as Steve's jump building shop is, they are both well respected in both course design and jump building.

ybiaw
Aug. 21, 2008, 10:27 AM
I was watching the team finals online last night, because I don't have Oxygen at home....(and I've been really bad about following the equestrian stuff)

That, um...."sand colored" jump....

They really really really needed to have someone take a look at that design before they made the real thing. The standards look like part of the male anatomy. It was very distracting! :lol: