I'm going to steal a moment right now and fill you in on the first day of fun!
As part of the Manitoba Horse Trails spring derby, participants were offered field time on Saturday of an hour and a half with either your own coach or one assigned to you. I was really lucky to be assigned someone who not only was a highly respected and sought after coach, but who I ended up doing well with style-wise.
|First small field|
My time spent acquainting her to the park was well spent as she settled in and I was able to hop on right away and warm up with no issues at all. She was a bit up, but still had no problem moving forward and freely over her back in a steady trot and canter prior to starting any jumps.
The first jump we would try was the smallest one in the park, a large log directly on the ground. C was immediately in my good books when she asked us to first come up to it and walk over. Definitely my speed for Savvy's and my first xc obstacle ever.
Saturday lesson video of first two jumps
After a few jumps in the first field, we moved on to a second larger field and working on some more log jumps but with the added difficulty of it being on a slope. C taught us about how to shift our legs and upper body according to ground slope and the importance of keeping our shoulders back and head up at all times.
|Second larger field from the top of the hill (much higher and steep than the picture suggests).|
Our last jump would be a barn. I almost typed 'adorable little red barn' just now, but really I was seeing 'huge, beastly, way too high and wide' red barn. I was shocked it was part of the Pre-Entry but C was giving me the look that I better practice it because it just might be part of my course the following day. Two of the other riders in my group chose not to even try it. The rider on the school master popped over on her massive 16'3" hand horse NBD.
|The hill taken from about half way up, with line of barns at the top and me contemplating life before jumping it.|
Enjoy this fugly moment I finally get over the beastly red barn. (Please be kind in your thoughts, it was a massive challenge both mentally for me and wonder pony).
I was so proud of us both regardless of fugly moments! Our efforts were rewarded at the end of the lesson with heading over to the water and trotting in and out, cooling off the ponies and letting them paw and splash.
Sunday would be derby day and after such a fantastic lesson, I was feeling so excited for it! (even though thoughts of a red barn in my course had me slightly concerned I might get eliminated...)