Saturday, 26 November 2011

BRC area dressage

Our turn to go and do dressage last weekend - a little apprehensive since we haven't done any for quite a while.

It was the riding clubs area qualifier for the winter championships, and held at Keysoe this yea,r so a good venue.
Fudge and I entered the team test to ride N24, and a warm-up test.
The warm-up was a choice (for me) of N28 or E42, and I'm a bit fed up of N28, so decided it was time we had another go at an elementary as we hadn't done one all year.
Thought it was worth an experiment, plus I get to ride in the double bridle  :-)

However, I forgot that because it was classed as a warm up test, it came first, whereas I'd have preferred it the other way round - oh well.
We were given times of 3.30pm and 4.08pm - good job Keysoe has lights!
Never had such a long lie in before dressage, even with the longer journey to get there, and being paranoid leaving extra time for getting lost, passport checking etc.
I cleaned my long boots in the morning before I went - unheard of!!
Fudge had feathers shampooed the night before though, and was left with strict instructions to stay clean - amazingly it worked!

Got there fine, one wrong turn on the journey but didn't add any time and found a space to park close to the collecting ring entrance.
So, we warmed up well despite a teenager falling in love with Fudge and throwing her arms round his neck for a cuddle!
Fudge was good and tolerated it, although he thought he deserved a few treats afterwards, and was most put out that she didn't have any ...

So, in to E42, very smiley judge, so I grinned back as we went down the centreline - nearly forgot to halt, whoops!
I must say I was very pleased with how it went, not much medium trot to speak of, and medium canter was just faster really, but that's where we are at the moment.
Fudge tried really hard in the canter loop back and counter canters, which are quite hard for us.
Finished on 58% so very pleased as last elementary we did was 53%, so a good improvement.
Nice comments from judge about us being a partnership, and a 7 for my riding  :-)

With hindsight Fudge was perhaps a bit tired by N24 even though he'd had a rest with a bridle change.It still went well though, another smiley judge and the sky was beautiful with a sunset to look at which made me smile inside.
Finished very pleased with my pony, and on our way out we got accosted by the area organiser who demanded that I let her know as soon as I've finished with Fudge as she wants to buy him! She said it nicely and admiringly so I was laughing, but she got told there is no way I'd ever sell him ...

I untacked, looked after Fudge, put him back on the lorry and went to get a cup of tea and piece of cake in the cafe and chatted to the remaining members of my club whilst we waited for the last few scores and results.
The warm up tests were finished first, and it turned out that we came 2nd in E42, although only out of 5 entries, and one of those had retired!
Beat my own riding club chairman who came 3rd - whoops! The one who came first was on 60% so we weren't that far off either!
Still, a rosette's a rosette  :-)

N24 we got 62.3% so also very pleased. The class was enormous because it was one from every team entered.Not placed, somewhere in the bottom half of the class, but a lot of the scores were very close in the 60-64% area, so happy with that too.