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Fair Hill- Training and Prelim?

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  • Fair Hill- Training and Prelim?

    Just wondering how the xc courses ride at Fair Hill at training and prelim! Considering going April 22-24 and don't know anyone who has gone within the past few years. Thanks!
    Come to the Dark Side, We Have Cross Country


  • #2
    I did the prelim in May this past year. It was my horse's first prelim (and my first in several years). It was BIG but very straightforward. My horse loved it. I think it is always a fair course, but I think it varies in technicalness (look! I made a word!) depending on the event. Don't know about the training, but I do think you can always expect fair courses there.


    • #3
      I've done the training a couple of times, but never at the April event. I think it's got some technical stuff in it, and is also big, but it's gallop-y enough that it doesn't feel technical. FWIW, I think it's my horse's favorite course, and that he comes off it feeling like a better horse.

      I did talk to my trainer about using the May one as a Prelim move-up and she thought that Plantation would be a better fit for us.

      As far as Training specifics go, there is all the usual stuff which may or may not be on any given course, drop down or bank up with a fence a few strides before or after, trakhener (not a bad one), fence before a decent size drop into water, bank up onto mound then a fence, steps up or down, 1/2 coffin, downhill log to drop, etc., plus the majority of the regular fences are max. height. But there aren't usually lot of skinnies/ corners/ really tight stuff.

      I know on Prelim. there's been a huge ditch and wall, a big trakehner, and several corners.


      • #4
        I know on Prelim. there's been a huge ditch and wall, a big trakehner, and several corners.
        At the May event, we only had one (off a bank...it rode really well, but I was terrified of my horse doing his typical Superman off the bank and us ending up 8 miles past the corner...he did not). But the ditch and wall and trakehner were heart-in-your-throat huge...total rider frightners, though! I didn't get stellar jumps at either, but my horse and I did not have our spring go as planned (I sprained my ankle badly two days before our first event of the year/last training so missed it, and while we had a terrific school before our move up, we were both a little rusty about running down and jumping BIG things). It's big...but if you've got a good galloping, bold horse and you are capable of sucking it up and galloping down to big things, it's a really fun course.


        • #5
          On the Prelim course, I think the coffin is quite difficult because of the terrain, though it tends to ride better than it walks. The corner is usually set either off the drop on a soft bend, or off of a turn and rides quite well. I don't think the water is particularly inviting, but it usually works out ok if you keep kicking (I should dig up the sequence of my beast going hind feet first up the upbank out. Athletic sucker). The ditch and wall is a rider fence but they usually jump it great; sometimes you'll get funny peaks at a couple of the tables and the trakehner in the bottom loop.

          I would say the stadium is usually hard for the level if they run it out in the field - it's often very long and I find that ground not the most encouraging. In April they may run it in the ring, and that's usually fine.


          • #6
            Gotspots, in April they mostly do run stadium in the Foxcatcher ring with the rubber footing. It is usually a nice forward riding course for training and prelim. XC is usually just as Yellow Britches has said, big and forward. The biggest question mark about FH in April is weather -- be prepared for cold rain or wind...
            Proud & Permanent Student Of The Long Road
            Read me: EN (http://eventingnation.com/author/annemarch/) and HJU (http://horsejunkiesunited.com/author/holly-covey/)