Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Dressage Competition: 20.9.14

Last Saturday was our first competition since October 2013. By the middle of the week I was getting really excited - it had been a busy and somewhat stressful week with starting 2 new teaching courses, so training was therapeutic as I was thinking about something completely different!

Ernest had been going extremely well in our practices, so I knew it was just down to me. I ride very strongly with my left hand, which you can see in the videos (I tried to upload them but they're bigger than 100MB, so follow this link to watch online), which results in him 'wagging' or 'nodding' his head, especially in walk.

My legs were shaking when we were warming up, but Ernest was a true gentleman - he was unfazed by everything else happening around him, focusing only on what I was asking. Cool as a pony-shaped cucumber!

Overall, we got 70.00% for Prelim 17 - our highest score for a long time! - and came 6th. We got 66.88% for Novice 28, and came 3rd. Novice is the next level up from Prelim and basically requires you to do more stuff, including different types of trot and canter. I was delighted! It was such a positive way to start competing again, but even if we hadn't placed I would have been delighted with our tests. 
I thought I was going to cry when I read the judge's comment for Novice: "A very honest pony who tries his heart out for you. Very pleasing trot work. Needs to be more supple on left rein especially in canter. Well ridden test." That's my Biff! Judges do tend to like Ernest, obviously with good reason, but it's always lovely to read compliments about my baby boy.
We've qualified for the Championships in the Prelim class, which will be held next year. Our next dressage outing is October 11th - less than a week after the half marathon! - so in the meantime I'll be working on my contact and hand position.
Thank you to my friends and family who came and supported us!

Remember to look here if you want to see the videos! Check out the rest of Simon's website, too - he's very talented. My favourite, and best, pictures of Ernest were taken by him.

1 comment:

  1. Pip I will try and get my videos sorted as soon as possible so that you can upload those as well. x