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Mike Etherington-Smith's course rocked

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  • Mike Etherington-Smith's course rocked

    That was a truly awesome cross country. The fences were gorgeous, everyone came home safe, and the cross country really mattered in the standings. It felt like old times.

    Maybe having the time too tight is a blessing for the horses, rather than a curse. If no one can make the time, maybe riders don't have an arbitrary number in their head, but rely more on their judgement on how fast they can go.

    I don't know, but I'm so glad to have seen such a great day of cross-country. I bet it will be even better without abrupt commercials and BUFFERING. I hope they put out an extended DVD.
    If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

  • #2
    Yet again he performed miracles...it was a perfectly balanced test for all nations. It really was spectacular...but that was to be expected.

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    • #3
      Agreed, I think he hit a home run with this course. Esp great to see XC have such a big effect on the standings, no one cantering home on their dressage score, yet no death and destruction. Just right.
      Sets up for a cracking day of showjumping.

      Comment


      • #4
        I had some reservations beforehand due to how many technical fences were in the course...but it rode really well for most and safely for all...thank god(s)
        * <-- RR Certified Gold Star {) <-- RR Golden Croissant Award
        Training Tip of the Day: If you can’t beat your best competitor, buy his horse.
        NO! What was the question?

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        • #5
          I have to admit I was very worried about how XC was going to go, being such a tight track with the fences so close together.

          But Mike really did pull one out of his hat. Yes the course was tight, but rarely if ever did you see riders have to gallop at breakneck speed, then slam on the brakes for twisty technical combinations. The combinations rewarded accurate riding, but without being twisty or trappy.

          Compare this to WEG '06, where the course was combination after combination of turning questions, with more than one which required such extreme angles to be taken at fences that the horses never had a fair shot to evaluate what they were jumping.

          This has been a very successful day for eventing (although that's not to say I'm not completely disappointed in the US's dramatic drop in the standings )

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          • #6
            That was such a good course that it made it look easy.

            Good test and good PR from it, I think.

            Comment


            • #7
              IS there a course description anywhere that includes dimensions?
              madeline
              * What you release is what you teach * Don't be distracted by unwanted behavior* Whoever waits the longest is the teacher. Van Hargis

              Comment


              • #8
                Mike is what this sport needs.... LOTS of them! We need a petition to keep him after the WEGS!

                Comment


                • #9
                  A beautiful course, very visually appealing without the silly fill and fluff that has become the norm. Great combos that were fair to horse and rider.
                  Some nights I stay up cashing in my bad luck; some nights I call it a draw. -- fun.

                  My favorite podcasts: Overdue, The Black Tapes, Tanis, Rabbits, How Did This Get Made?, Up and Vanished.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Ohhh, I do hate being late to the party. Guys, when did this air?

                    I have my DVRs and TiVO working overtime so I hope one of them caught this.

                    "If you have the time, spend it. If you have a hand, lend it. If you have the money, give it. If you have a heart, share it." by me

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Anyplace Farm View Post
                      Ohhh, I do hate being late to the party. Guys, when did this air?

                      I have my DVRs and TiVO working overtime so I hope one of them caught this.
                      Not on TV, but you can watch all the equestrian coverage at www.nbcolympics.com

                      Go to video, look up equestrian and watch til your heart's content!

                      NBC should be getting a ZILLION thank you's from horsefolk all over the world!
                      Patience pays.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by snoopy View Post
                        Yet again he performed miracles...it was a perfectly balanced test for all nations. It really was spectacular...but that was to be expected.
                        Completely agree. He is genius at producing courses that test the best and don't kill off the also rans. How he does it...is a mystery to me!

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          Originally posted by Anyplace Farm View Post
                          Ohhh, I do hate being late to the party. Guys, when did this air?

                          I have my DVRs and TiVO working overtime so I hope one of them caught this.
                          It has not aired yet. The broadcast will be 3pm Pacific, 6 pm Eastern, on Oxygen tonight, 2 hours.

                          The live internet coverage was 3 1/2 hours.
                          If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Melissa.Hare.Jones View Post
                            Not on TV, but you can watch all the equestrian coverage at www.nbcolympics.com

                            Go to video, look up equestrian and watch til your heart's content!

                            NBC should be getting a ZILLION thank you's from horsefolk all over the world!

                            This horseman spent a fustrating evening trying to get ANY of it to work. But alas... I have an older MAC, NBC made the site only accessable to those on PC's or macs that run on a PC platform.

                            Hopefully something will be on YouTube. It was a real dissapointment not to be able to watch ANY equestrian event on TV.. but they REPLAYED the beach volley ball (ladies in biknis any one?) and the swimming.....
                            APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by poltroon View Post
                              It has not aired yet. The broadcast will be 3pm Pacific, 6 pm Eastern, on Oxygen tonight, 2 hours.

                              The live internet coverage was 3 1/2 hours.
                              Alas, Oxygen on my cable network (Time Warner) is apparently not carrying any Olympic coverage. None, nada, zippo, zilch. I've emailed NBC asking how and why this is, but I imagine they'll get back to me sometime in February.
                              Congratulate me! My CANTER cutie is an honor student at Goofball University!

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                ...and the US/China basketball
                                Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Am I the only one who was a little dissapointed with the course? Maybe it's just because it was the first time I've seen an Olympic XC course on tv since the change to the shorter course... it just didn't seem like as much of a trial as I remember other Olympics being. I also thought the fence design was a little... plain. Which Olympics was it where there were live sheep in a pen on course? I do understand the space limitations of Hong Kong, though, and think that that was as much like a cross country course as a golf course could be made to look.

                                  I'm not sure what to make of the feeling of relief that I felt when no one died or even badly crashed on course. On the one hand, yay, no one died! On the other hand, what state is our sport in when that is of note? Are there any other sports in the games where one might expect a few of the athletes to die as a result, and not just in a freak accident?

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    How about those artificial &quot;rocks&quot; on course...

                                    I too thought that the course was well-conceived, visually appealing and rode exceptionally well even for the less-seasoned international riders who have the opportunity to represent their countries at the Olympics. I was concerned about the placing of the various fake clay-colored rocks on course - I realize from watching the on-line feed that some of them held speakers, and I assume some contained other electronics, but it seemed like some of the locations on course were inviting trouble with horses swerving to avoid them in some instances.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Appsolute View Post
                                      This horseman spent a fustrating evening trying to get ANY of it to work. But alas... I have an older MAC, NBC made the site only accessible to those on PC's or macs that run on a PC platform.....
                                      Sorta true but not really. It was available to Macs with an Intel processing chip. The Intel chip is fast enough to process and play the feed. Macs with Intel chips are not on PC platforms. They are still most definitely Macs through and through. Viewing the video required that you use Firefox and download a new Microsoft Program called Silverlight. I had never heard of it before yesterday (and neither had my Mac consultant). So, no, you don't really need a Mac running on a PC platform. You just have to have a Mac that is less than about 3 years old. Hope that helps demystify some.

                                      Oh, and to stay on topic. It was a beautiful course for sure. Being of the photography ilk, I was very impressed with all the non jump details too.
                                      Cristy Cumberworth
                                      www.CristyCumberworth.com
                                      www.madmares.com

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        The rocks were artificial and covered huge drains that were installed to drain water from the golf/x-c course.

                                        I think it is a huge accomplishment that the course was so influential, really spread out the riders, and did that without blood.
                                        Hindsight bad, foresight good.

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