Yesterday was Jack’s first dressage competition, a walk and trot test and Prelim 1 at a local low key venue. He took some persuading to get up from the field as he was sunbathing, but we plaited up, loaded up, and set off. For Jack’s first few outings the empahsis will be on good behaviour rather than results, so that we build a good foundation for the future. He came out the box sweaty, and quivering like a leaf so I walked and grazed him in hand for 25mins till he settled. He warmed up nicely for his 1st test. He is very much a work in progress, and doesn’t currently have the neck muscles to sustain work on the bit so I rode his test aiming for accuracy and obedience click images to enlarge
The 2nd test included canter circles, warming up Jack seemed to think that canter and buck circles were more fun! He was getting wound up by the extra horses now in the warm up area, and the clanging of poles from the near by SJing. Went into the 2nd test, and he started napping, nothing naughty he doesn’t know his role yet, after all he has never been asked to do dressage before. For the past 12 years he has been taught that his role is to gallop and jump! I kept him in walk and trot and by the 4th movement he was listening and calmer. Despite being above the bit, not doing any canter and generally looking a bit ropey he managed to get 46%!!! I was really pleased with him, he listened and chilled out when I reassured him, which is the promising start to a trusting partnership. Photograph courtesy of www.mudsports.co.uk
Scores went up for the 1st test and Jack got *59.1% and 4th place so I was over the moon. This Thursday evening I am taking him to a flatwork clinic for more ‘out and about’ training. He will be an event horse in no time! Photos above of our final halt with me saluting and Jack joining in! and his rosette proudly displayed on the kitchen pin board, and my H&H voucher from Tesco, I think they must be spying on me!
Thank you eagle eyed blog readers 🙂