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Hunter princess turned eventer; OFFICIALLY! Update and pics*

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  • Original Poster

    Originally posted by pattnic View Post

    J, I will physically hurt you if you buy a pre-tied stock tie... you MUST have one that you tie yourself! And you should check out the Snooty Fox first!!!! SHould either of those places fail you for a non-pre-tied stock tie, I will loan you mine. And you have your armband, right?
    Umm, oops ... lol. I totally bought a pre tied stock tie!!! It seems to look ok, though! I don't know, I tried it on tonight and I don't think I look too dorky I literally had about 20 mins to shop in Alpharetta this afternoon after my lesson with Susan

    I have my medical card, and it's in an iPod case! The card fits perfectly, and it won't bother my bare skin

    Edited to say that I used the Myler D ring for my lesson this afternoon, and my trainer said she actually thought he went much better in it anyway, go figure! So maybe my last minute panic is actually a blessing!
    Last edited by Dakotawyatt; Oct. 28, 2010, 10:36 PM. Reason: ETA: bit update!


    • Original Poster

      Wow. I almost have no words. I am so relieved and happy. I am OFFICIALLY no longer a "Hunter princess playing at being an eventer". I am NOW "A former Hunter princess turned eventer"

      What an amazing weekend. It rained Mon-Wed like CRAZY, then had 2 good days of sun; footing on Saturday was magnificent. I was SO nervous. I TRIED to stay as cool and calm as I could, but all I could think about was getting eliminated xc. Walked the course Friday when I arrived, and was really nervous about MANY of the questions. My issue with my boy is I get fixated on what makes me nervous, and don't always give him a confident ride. When he's going in "cold" to jump a course, he MUST have a good, confident ride.

      So ... I was just so nervous that I would let him down and lean forward, let him get too fast, etc. Had ALL day Saturday to get ready for dressage (2:45), and SOMEHOW ended up in the warmup ring only about 13 minutes before I needed to lay down my test. I wanted a SOLID 30 minutes to help him get relaxed, because he HATES crowds ... and horses passing him ... and horses coming at him ... and ... you get the picture. So after 13 minutes, he was short strided, tense, and certainly NOT anywhere close to being "on the bit".

      The test went OK. The Myler D-ring is legal by the way. I entered the ring and did the best I could. Problems I could identify was that I was tense and nervous, HE was a little unsettled and tense, and coming from the free walk to the collected walk, he jigged. Overall, score was a little disappointing. I got straight 5's with a few 4's thrown in.Yikes! 53.4 was my score. The judges card showed pretty much nothing but "collection", and "topline". So, we have homework.

      That's all I can think of. XC description in a little bit!!


      • #23
        Heck.. no worries... We still get comments like that and I've been doing this way longer!!!!!

        I just keep telling myself they always write that

        Hope you had a blast!!!!!!!! Wish I could have been there.... what perfect weather and footing.... and scenery!!!!


        • #24
          Congrats! And its always good to start out with a test you can improve on Winter to me always means dressage, but then I live on an icy tundra that never seems to thaw...
          RIP Charlie and Toby


          • #25
            Sounds like a perfick start to me ... should I remind you that the first time I FINISHED ( i.e. didn't fall off in stadium and shout "Fu$$K" in front of 150 PC d1s and parents ) I scored 60 in dressage, + 12 time faults IN STADIUM, + ANOTHER 20 time faults XC .......

            The announcer, also English, commented, over the tannoy "Oh come on Kate, you're representing Great Britain, surely you can at least try to TROT through the water ?"


            • Original Poster

              Originally posted by KateWooten View Post
              Sounds like a perfick start to me ... should I remind you that the first time I FINISHED ( i.e. didn't fall off in stadium and shout "Fu$$K" in front of 150 PC d1s and parents ) I scored 60 in dressage, + 12 time faults IN STADIUM, + ANOTHER 20 time faults XC .......

              The announcer, also English, commented, over the tannoy "Oh come on Kate, you're representing Great Britain, surely you can at least try to TROT through the water ?"
              Lol! That's great! The announcer this time had a cute comment at the end ... "Jen Bishop and Ricochet now ... sadly they had an unfortunate ricochet off jump 2 in the cross country"
              *details in a minute*


              • #27
                and Ricochet now ... sadly they had an unfortunate ricochet off jump 2 in the cross country"
                *details in a minute*
                ahahaaaahhhahahaha .... you win !


                • Original Poster

                  OK, on to phase 2! I was FINE with my dressage test. I knew it was absolutely as good as it possibly could have been at that time; we've NEVER performed a dressage test in public. So, was feeling pretty good about it. Booked it back to the barn, cut out the braids I'd worked so hard for, wet his mane down to straighten it, and ran to the port o potty to change.

                  My fantabulous support for the weekend, RelocatedTxJumpr, tacked my horse up for me. Zipped myself into my life jacket, I mean vest, and even remembered my armband. Climbed aboard and headed down to the warmup. He was UP. He was ALERT. He was shaking. He stopped and stared. I was thinking in my head ... "LOOK at the jumps. LOOK at the jumps. Over there, THAT'S where you're going!"

                  Considering I've never even done so much as a schooling show, I wasn't positive what technique I was going to use. Once I got into the field, there were only 2 other horses in there, so I decided to R E L A X. Held the reins on the buckle, kicked my feet out of the stirrups, and walked for about 20 minutes. Lots of patting, lots of talking, and lots of breathing. I'd learned, and left myself TONS of time for my xc warmup. Shortened my reins, cantered both ways, then cantered into the crossrail. He backed himself up, I sat BACK, supported, and OVER he went! He felt good; nice and forward, but a little hesitant.

                  I was SO happy to see 2 solid warmup fences ... I had NO idea what to expect. He jumped both well (I'd schooled both before at the hunter pace back in August) so I decided to run with that. Got a sip of water, Relo talked me down, and got the 4 minutes to go, so I headed to the start box. After the horse in front of me went, I felt on the verge of tears with panic, so I PRAYED. Like, prayed for real. We got the countdown, and off we went!

                  Had planned to trot ... straightaway to the canter ... ok! First jump was a hard look, but a good one. Second jump was a kennel ... we'd never schooled it ... the cabin type jumps are a sticky point. I thought it was TOUGH for a second jump on course. He said, "Um, no". I stayed BACK, used my spur, he ALMOST said "OK", but then changed his mind. So, a stop, I used my crop, circled, re-presented, and cropped twice behind my leg at the jump. He landed, took 2 strides, then said, "OK!!! I'm now going FORWARD!" Up to another scary palisade jump, which was great, then straightaway to the bank complex. Big square oxer, up the ramp, off a drop. We'd never schooled that particular type of drop. I stayed back, looked up, used leg, and he sailed off perfectly. From there, he was a MACHINE. Holy cow, it was AMAZING. Every jump was right out of stride, I rode the HECK out of the remaining "scary" jumps, and even though he jumped the cabin framed by trees from a virtual standstill, and I totally ate the tree, he was SUPER brave off the ski jump, and perfect to the last 2.

                  As we crossed the finish line, I had tears in my eyes. I patted Tiki, good boy'd him to death, and jumped off. Ran up the stirrups, loosened the girth and noseband, gave him the peppermint out of my pocked, and walked back to the barn. He was PUMPED full of adrenaline. I felt lightheaded ... we'd DONE it! Never strung together more than 6 in a row, and never without looking at/jumping at LEAST one of them first. Despite our 20 penalties, we had moved up from 7th to 6th.


                  • #29
                    Oh dear, she's a goner!

                    WELCOME OVER!
                    Don't let anyone tell you that your ideas or dreams are foolish. There is a millionaire walking around who invented the pool noodle.


                    • Original Poster

                      After MONTHS of anticipation, it's over. I feel relief that our first outing was a success. I'm so happy with the outcome (details to follow) I feel a TINY touch of disappointment in myself that in every phase I could have made an improvement to improve HIM. Our test could have been better if we'd warmed up longer. Our xc run would have been clear had I proactively used my crop the FIRST time over the kennel. Our sj round would have been clear had I not jumped up his neck. You get the picture.

                      So, for the jumping phase, BN went first thing at 8 am. We had walked the course the night before, and I was happy. It was a lovely, flowing course with a generous time allowed and nothing tricky. I was most worried about the first jump (big oxer with LARGE flowers), the panel jump (he's just never jumped one of those), and the final jump (a maxed oxer). Nothing was particularly scary looking, but it was a different TYPE of course for him. Everything looked stark and big because compared to hunter jumps, and even the "jumper" jumps at a local h/j show, they all looked very airy. Which should be GOOD for him. These jumps looked like the 2'9 ones at a local show. Which would be FINE if we'd either A.) schooled them, or B.) jumped them at a lower height But, I guess it's time for me to put my big girl panties on and learn to do it the "hard" way.

                      In warmup, he felt yuck. His flatwork was terrible. He was a total rubber ball, NOT striding out at all. At the slightest touch of leg, he wanted to break into a canter. His trot was tiny and stabbing. I got up in my 2-point and cantered. After THAT, he felt super.

                      Left the ring to watch Marisa and Zoe ride ( each had one rail), then went back in to keep moving. Once I went BACK into the ring, he just felt pissy. I decided to go ahead and jump. Coming into the crossrail, he didn't back off at ALL. He was saying, "See mom, I REMEMBER. You want FORWARD." Came to that again, then around to the vertical. Same thing at both. Came into the oxer, which, again ... jumping "cold", it just looked really BIG. Cantered up to it, tried to wait because there was NOTHING, and he went. Soooo, got a little left, but there was no "EEK" and stutter. Hacked another minute or 2, jumped the oxer and vertical again, then the oxer one more time and it felt GREAT. So I stopped there. Walked until I got the on deck call (about 6 minutes), so I schooled ONE more oxer, and again, it was perfect. Waited calmly, walked in, and felt excited.

                      As I walked in, I tried to allow him to pass in close proximity to the jumps. The whistle blew, and I cut across the ring and picked up my canter. Coming into the first jump, I slipped a finger under my neck strap, sat back, and legged. He jumped it great, but landed a little disorganized. Bending line to 2, a red and white post and rail vertical. He drifted left to it, and knocked it pretty hard. 3 was a dark green oxer; I waited, and it was good. Left hand turn to a yellow and red vertical. He drifted left again, and I had to use leg pretty hard. Bending line to a yellow 2 stride, vertical to oxer. He was super sticky at the vertical, so I purposely rode it in 3; the oxer felt fine coming out. Left hand turn to the panel jump, and that felt good. Straight ahead to a black and white oxer, and he AGAIN drifted left and looked hard. I STAYED BACK, and it worked out well. Right hand turn to another red and yellow vertical, and I saw a forward spot. Clucked, legged, and *I* went, but he chipped, then completely fell over his front end and knocked down the rail. Got myself together and rode the final oxer like it was the giant coop I'd been afraid of, and he ended GREAT.

                      So, yeah. I was bummed. The spot was RIGHT there, and I RODE for it. I was a little disappointed in him, that he didn't really rise to the occasion there. Then I shifted the disappointment to me, in that I allowed my body to get faster than my brain, and if only I'd come out of the corner and WAITED, he would have been clear. I figured we'd dropped out of ribbon contention because I had been in 6th coming in. NOT the case. We moved up again, and finished 5th overall.

                      I was ECSTATIC!!! You know who won my division? Becky Holder, that's who! So, 5th out of 10 in a class with 5 or 6 seasoned professionals isn't too shabby. As we walked to the awards ceremony, the announcer said something cute. "This is Jen Bishop and Ricochet. Sadly, they had an unfortunate ricochet off jump 2 in the cross country" ... Lol, it was great. LOVE my pink ribbon, and I had the most AWESOME time in the victory gallop. Can't wait to do it again


                      • #31
                        BIG Congrats! What a great first experience! It's a big accomplishment and you should be very, very pleased with yourself for having the guts to get out there and try something so different and outside your comfort zone. In no time you'll be really familiar with the process and it will seem easy. For now, give yourself a big pat on the back, and one for the pony


                        • Original Poster

                          Alrighty, here's some pics! These are the professional ones.

                          Here's me after the dressage test:

                          Here's a view of the xc course; the water, bench jump, and the ski jump. You can see the bank complex in the distance off the ski jump pic.

                          Heading out to begin cross country:

                          Showjumping! Our own Pattnic took these pics
                          Proof I did NOT lean forward on our apporach to the first jump:

                          Final jump:

                          Noctis and I with our ribbons:

                          First ever victory gallop:


                          • #33
                            Another convert. Uh-oh.

                            Well done!


                            • #34
                              yey!! good for you!

                              I'm working on the other directional change.
                              Eventer turned Hunter.
                              Horses are amazing athletes and make no mistake -- they are the stars of the show!


                              • #35
                                You were AWESOME Jen! The Squeaky One was a rockstar!


                                • #36
                                  I THINK my tummy has finally settled down...lets just say I woke up Saturday at 4am with knots its MY stomach...and all I was doing was supporting Jen!!

                                  OMG...I could not be more proud of her...I feel like a proud Momma! As I sent her off out of the start box at XC I immediately started hoofing it across the course to the finish line, stopping and watching EVERY jump....as she cleared that last fence I broke down into tears and took off at a trot up the hill...by the time I had reached her my tears had dried and I think I almost knocked her over I hugged her so hard!

                                  OMG...the entire event was wonderful! Everyone wishing everyone they saw "good luck" and "have a good ride", so much different than what I am used to!

                                  I just can.not.express how proud I am that she not only found a goal and followed through, but that she made it ALL THE WAY through AND got a ribbon!!!
                                  Never Ride Faster Than Your Guardian Angel Can Fly
                                  Way Back Texas~04/20/90-09/17/08
                                  Green Alligator "Captain"


                                  • #37
                                    Awesome!! The announcer's ricochet comment is too funny I'm also recently out of hunter land and these eventers have quite the sense of humor. My favorite so far: "Mister President to the duck blind and....oops, a little squirrely but they're up and over!"
                                    The big guy: Lincoln

                                    Southern Maryland Equestrian


                                    • #38
                                      Congrats! I'm also in the process of converting, and these stories give me hope! At this point in time I know my nerves are the limiting factor...Well, dressage will always be a work in progress


                                      • #39
                                        WHOOO HOOOO!!!!

                                        Welcome to the dark side!!!! Isn't it a blast!!!???

                                        That is quite impressive to be finishing only 4 behind Becky Holder Heck yeah

                                        And yep... I love the announcers! At the AEC's they said "there is a dog that is very hot and uncomfortable in the trailer... Please go put him out of his misery"! hee hee..... And then some horse got loose and trotted across the warm up and the announcer said "oooh, he's fancy.. we'll give that an 8"!

                                        We have fun over on this side

                                        Congrats to you and your pony!!!! What a way to convert You did it!!!!


                                        • Original Poster

                                          Thank y'all for your kind words. My long term goal is training level. Ultimately, I'd like Tiki and I to do a T3DE 5 years from now. Relo and I are looking to do a c/t in December, YAY! There's hope yet to convert her!!

                                          The interesting thing is I was looking at Poplar's BN course, and while they looked HUGE a month ago, I was looking at them today going, "Hey. We can TOTALLY do that!"