Next time I jump I am going to slap a post it to my forehead to remind me to breathe. Seriously, I go to the gym at least 4 times a week. I work out. I may not be as fit as a marathoner but I should not be out of breath, by jump 9. WTF. I am pretty sure the stadium round I forgot to breathe (1-8) then I went to fence 9 to start cross country and was dying. Can someone hold their breath for 18 jumps? Well I sure as hell did! HA.
Anyway, as I said in my last blog post, it rained it’s ever-loving ass off at like 4 a.m. on Saturday. The wind and rain was so hard that it woke me up and the horses were out and I had a moment’s panic but I could not have gone out if I had wanted to it was that bad. AT least it wasn’t storming (No lightning or thunder) but I took a quick peek out and the boys were up by the trees with their butts to the rain.
Fair Hill had already posted it was happening no matter what and the radar for once was correct, it said it would taper off by 7 or so and by 8 am the sun was out and it was gorgeous.
A couple barn friends were going too but their times were much earlier than mine so i said I would haul myself. That way I didn’t have to go too early. I did get there in time to see Tanya’s second round but somehow missed even seeing Starbar and Sterling on the property. Funny thing though every gray horse we passed Remus whinnied at! “STERLING WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN,” Remus screamed a 1001 times. Horse, you are an idiot.
It was actually a nice day. It could have been sooo much hotter. There was a breeze. So we really lucked out. After arriving and getting checked in, I walked down to the course (a million more miles) and took a peek at a couple of questions I had from the day before. I watched a couple horses go (including Tanya) which helped me figure out my directions and game plan. I studied the stadium course quickly (Since I had not found 1-8 the day before…cue laugh track) and then walked back up to get my horse off the trailer and get ready to ride. Boots on, vest on, armband on, hairnet, hat on, gloves and crop near bridle. OOPS running out of time now. Spurs..nope forgot them. They do so well from the truck don’t they? (NO they don’t) But I had a crop. Thank goodness I had a crop.
Zipping up the jump vest, I realized I was hot as balls by then even though it was not bad out but the sun was pretty intense. Remus unloaded and I fixed the saddle (already on) then bridled him and walked over to Tanya’s trailer to dig her mounting block out (friends, we all need them, am I right?). She was all done, lucky her, and was just sticking around to watch and be media person for me! I really really should buy my own mounting block. I use anyone’s that is out there in the field. Luckily horse people are pretty low key.
Up the hill we go. I trotted a bit and then loped a bit then got to the warm up ring and hoped I could get Remus over the cross rail warm up. Cause there was no horse. VERY low energy. OH SHIT we had 18 jumps still to jump. This could be fun. Or not.
Tanya kept telling me to jump more schooling jumps but first I had to rev up the engine so I cantered him both ways to try to get SOME effort out of him. OH DEAR GOD it was like beating a dead horse. LITERALLY….
I had one horse in the order to go in front of me so I was like screw the warm up. The stadium jumps were TINY. I swear they weren’t 2 feet. FOR me to say this is a miracle in itself but I knew that we could warm up on them. He was okay on them hey at least he didn’t get any rails. Of course they were TINY. So there was that!
As I said as I headed towards Fence 9 the start of CC I was laboring for breath already. I was really wondering if I could do all this. And to be honest I was wondering if Remus had enough oomph to jump the rest of this course. As I left stadium (remember I forgot my spurs!!) I smacked him with the crop which got nothing but he may have perked his ears up a bit because he saw the course up ahead. Nothing brightens Remus up like cross country.
I felt like he was sluggish and lazy on the course. Sally (who actually happened to be standing there with her cute as dickens dog) was watching and said she though it was good and he looked great. I don’t know, he felt heavy on the forehand. But we were clear.
Here was the course above….so we did not crash through anything but we also didn’t over jump!
He went over the first few jumps fine, lazy, even the ditch was fine too except I did look down (WHY did I do that?) and Remus was like huh whats up and then jumped it anyway then the feeder he never even blinked even though I fell off last year there. Maybe I am improving?? LOL….then we went to the box then I don’t even remember the rolltop and then the big red monster from last year that didn’t even phase me this year.
The photo I have from # 16 cracks me up cause it looks like Remus is jumping the whole damn train. (The jump line is behind the train).Then it was a tight turn over the road (which used to scare Remus, the change of terrain!) to the train. Remus kind of took this funny last week while schooling he jumped it fine but literally like he saw a mouse and all four feet jumped up as we cleared it. But he was fine here. If you have 35 seconds watch the video. The slowest canter in the world…it is like riding Eeyore.
I shouted to Sally and Tanya as we went by that I was exhausted and they laughed. On to the water and last jump. Note: My reins were looped through most of the course on the videos. As in a nice hack in the countryside. So I was not having to pull at all and Remus by the time we reached the water was getting weary and we trotted into the water and we went up the hill (still trotting) and trotted the last jump. (I am still laughing at that smack I gave him before the jump. OH REMUS. MOVE.)
I was totally planning on jumping the BN options where I could, but when there was no canter or the canter I had was like a western lope, I was like let’s just get over the Intros. No worries he did, but jeez. I think he was totally sleepy from being out all night and he loves his morning naps. I hope my times are a bit later at FH Starter Trials so he can sleep a bit in his cool stall before we haul. Because Remus. You need a nap. Stat. So did I after that course. And I took one later in the day! I am sure he was asleep before I unhooked the trailer!
It was a great day and Fair Hill always puts on a great event. Next Saturday is the starter trial then Remus will have a bit of downtime as we are getting close to conference time (my work) and I will be gone for about 10 days. Poor Remus will just eat and nap all the time though I am sure I will have a couple people hop on him while I am gone!!
I finished up house sitting on Sunday and am glad to be back home with my dogs and husband. It was fun playing farm owner but it is kind of nice not to have to do stalls!