I tried to mentally go through what parts of the course I did see then keep track of the number of jumps I didn't see. Oh My! Let's see how this goes! We tack up and off we go to warm up. We are the very last rides to go. Our friend goes first. Kelcie went next and my nerves were on high alert for her. The start box guy was very nice. I told him there was no way I could set off on course until I knew she was nearly finished, for my nerves sake. I asked my big kid if I could go next to keep Steady from loosing all his shit because everyone left him. And she was kind enough to let Mama go next. And off we go! Jump 1,2 and 3 Steady jumped like a calm cool and relaxed old school horse. It was upon landing at jump 3 that he realized we were NOT schooling and that this was the real deal and OFF HE WENT!
|My gallopy horse galloping|
In true Steady fashion he turned into a jump eating freight train. After landing jump 4 it was a pretty steep incline to a pretty long low incline hill so I tried an experiment. I let him go thinking maybe me not fighting him and the incline it would self regulate a bit. HAHAHA who am I kidding. I let go and he was off to the races up the hill. Macy who is back at the start box watching commented when we returned, "you were going really fast up that hill MOM!) HAHAHA yes child that was a failed experiment on my part. Well, now we know. The rest of the course rode, like, well, a XC course on Steady. Me using every ounce of energy I have to hold him back in between fences and the fences are just kinda speed bumps in our path. Riding this horse you never question whether or not you will make it over any of the jumps. It's more of a matter of hoping you can get him to agree to the speed in which to go over them. The line up of jumps after the stone wall at 4 was: 5- little bench, 6- baby trakhenner,
7-1st water and out over a hanging log, 8-second water and a zig and a zag to red ramp,
|The Steady and I over 7|
9- ugly railroad ties,
|Lego and Kid over Ugly railroad ties|
10-steep mound with tiny log on top, 11- hanging log of sorts, 12- took the less muddy option of a decent size trakhenner, 13- ditch, 14-ramp, 15- stone wall.
About the 2/3rd mark I was questioning my sanity of being out there competing after a 9 month recovery and only 2 months back riding. I was exhausted but I found another gear and we powered through. It was not ideal. I have never been that winded on a XC course. I've always made sure I was fit enough to handle a XC course on my beast with out being winded. But I was anxious to get out there since I lost so much of last year to my damn leg. I don't know if it was the entire day that had me worn out before I even started or if it was the course itself but I know I need to up my fitness level big time!
I was anxious to find out how my girls did. Lego and E were still out on course when I finished and I didn't see them for several minutes and my Mom nerves started to worry something had gone wrong. But it was just a long walk back from the end of the course and all was well when I saw them rounding the line of trees. She was beaming, I was beaming and the little one was already back at the trailer cleaning up little miss Penny. Kelcie and Penny had an amazing first time on XC! They did have one refusal because of a weird approach to one of the bigger jumps on their course but they cleared it on the second attempt and the rest of the course went great. As the start box guy said, "she looks great out there! Much better than most of the adults that went through today."
|Dey is so cute!|
Lego and Elaina too had one refusal. It was at jump 2. But it quickly made her wake up and ride like she meant it. She can often times get complacent and go on auto pilot. But Lego isn't that horse. He makes you work for it.
Steady and I went clear like Steady does.
|Happy horse, tired horse. Happy Mom, tired Mom|
Couldn't have ended the day on a better note! Oh wait! That isn't the end I had another dressage test to ride. Hahaha who willingly does dressage after you get to go XC? Not me. I happily scratched that class and called it a day. 12 rides was plenty enough for this exhausted group of people and ponies. And to top it off we met someone at the show that rides with our trainer and lives around the corner from us that were happy to haul one of our ponies home! DAY MADE! I don't have to make 2 trips.
Kelice 2nd in Mini trial, 4th- Intro C test
Macy 2nd in 2ft jumpers, 7th in Intro C
Elaina 5th in Novice Mini Trial
Momma 1st in Novice Mini Trial
Bonus: When your 14 year old daughter watches her Mom ride her beast of a horse with pretty much zero prep and just coming back from a major injury and win she still thinks her mom is a total bad ass! So I'm pretty much winning at the Mom thing right now too!
And now I think it's time to look at 4 horse trailers this 2 trips thing is for the birds!