Of all things he's a bit on the chubby side, but is healthy, sound, and sane (hard knock on wood). His brain made its way back into his noggin' when the weather evened out (after much change to his diet and turnout, and no change in lack of brain we gave up and blamed Mother Nature. We were right...she's a b!tch), and even though we still struggle with simple things like straightness and not leaning on my right leg on the flat, our jumping has improved A. TON. We actually go OVER jumps now...not through them.
He's been on XC a grand total of three times now. First time we did a clinic in the Elementary division, and it went great. Had a couple stop/run outs when something looked especially hairy, but he tackled the water, the up bank, and the fake ditch like he was a pro. He proved he was game and willing, so I was thrilled with the day.
Second time out...haha, joke's on me. He was INSANE. Warm up was hilarious...he was jumping like a spider on roller skates...legs going everywhere. Brain was 50/50. I was just doing my best to stay ON, so naturally I got left behind a few times. We stuck with Elementary, we survived, and even managing to jump the BN ditch like it was the grand canyon.
But today we took no chances...my trainer schooled him on the flat this morning, and we went with a group XC late afternoon. We started out all over the place...wiggling before the fences, giving things the hairy eyeball, jumping like a deer, you name it. Then it was like, lightbulb moment, for both of us. Not really sure who had the light come on first, but end result is what matters. He was a rock star! We jumped a couple elementary obstacles, but decided to say hell with it and tried BN, and I lived! The horse has so much power, its unlike any horse I've ever ridden, so I'm still trying to get used to all the gears, which was my lightbulb moment. I was finally able to stay with him and get out of his way, even when I had to steer until the base of the fence.
But I'm thrilled. By the end of the outing I was riding SO much better. I had to borrow my trainer's saddle, and I think having a more forward flap is really helpful for me because I can finally shorten my stirrups to where they're supposed to be. They still look long in the pictures, but believe me, that is three holes shorter than the last time we went XC!
I know my position still sucks in a couple of these...but I'm brave and showing the progress of the day.
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Nice horse! He doesn't even look that big - you must be very tall!
I remember those times with my Tb as well...just trying to stay ON her while she figured out how to propel herself on the other side...lol
Like that, thank you!! He sticks at a hair under 17h, and last time we taped him he was around 1250lb. I'm actually only 5'8", but I'm kinda long and lanky. I laughed when I saw the pics because I thought the same thing...he doesnt look as big when I'm on him. but then I look at pics of him and Bailey, who is 15.1h standing next to each other, and he dwarfs Bailey, haha!!
Thank you all for the kind comments. I'm pretty hopeful about this guy. We're aiming for Sept to be our first recognized. Who knows maybe by then we will have figured out how to get around Novice!
Last edited by runNjump86; May. 25, 2013 at 05:20 PM.
Reason: phone typing mistakes
Lovely horse! My big lad is 17.2 (I refuse to measure him again just in case he's grown!) He's running intermediate right now, so just because they're big doesn't mean they can't eventually figure it out.
Granted this pic is on a slight hill, but you can still see the difference. The horse in the middle is my other guy, Bailey.
These boots are the Dalmars. I have a set of Premier AC I used on Bailey last year, but they kept sliding because he's in between sizes. The PAC hinds won't work on Sky because he has a scar tissue buildup on the outside of his right hind, and they come up too high in my opinion. We're going to use Porters on Sky's hind legs if we can ever find them!
Thanks all. He's a bit chunky when he's just standing around, but I swear its like the chunky transforms when he's under saddle and using himself, haha! I totally agree I need a more forward flap. Thankfully my trainer's saddle fits both of us pretty well and I can use that because I'm not in a position to go drop $1000 on a new-to-me saddle. But oh, how I drool over the Voltaire saddle my friend has!!
And yes, he is handsome, but sometimes the problem is he knows it! I'm excited to see what we can accomplish. We're attempting a dressage schooling show next weekend, so that should be interesting since its our weak point right now. But, trial and error!!