The jump lesson was again back to basics. We worked on making sure that I can have enough pace going in to be settled at the jump. JR is so careful and David helped me to stay softer in my seat than I want and trust that he won’t have a front rail down by staying over him in the air. JR, as most of you know, has his own unique style, but if I remember to ride him as David taught—and I can stay on him—his jump is amazing!
Thank you so much to Stable View for hosting the training sessions at your beautiful facility. It was also nice to work with two of the three vets that are helping the team, Dr. Mark Revenaugh and Dr. Susan Johns. We have a good system in place, with David as coach, Joanie as his brains and right arm, and fantastic vets.
We finally had out first competition of the year at Pine Top. I scratched Syd because we’ve been trying to figure out a crack in his foot. After a meeting of the minds between farriers Sean Crocker and Steve Teachman, Syd’s foot was patched up for support and I’m happy to have him good to go, hopefully for the rest of the season. We’re over the hump at this point with the crack that originated from an injury at Millbrook last summer.
I did get to run JR at Pine Top, and he was so fun! He was fifth after a nice dressage test, show jumped great on his part (I could still be a bit better staying with him in the air), and really fun to ride cross-country. I was completely surprised to win, though, as it was our first time out since Fair Hill and I was just trying to have a good go with him!
The young horses, Duke of Diamond and RF Luminati, did their first event of the season at Pine Top, too. It’s nice to have Luminati back and he was completely respectable. You can tell I’ve only ridden him about six months, even though I’ve had him over a year. I need to get him a bit more broke and add some more tools, but he’s such a good jumper and mover and a pleasure to ride. Duke of Diamond, who we were calling Dyson and is now being called “Dukey” in the barn, didn’t disappoint as my old lady horse. He’s so great to ride and put in a nice flowing test. He may be the most broke horse in the barn even though he’s one of the youngest! His show jumping was good but unfortunately I had a rail—he didn’t—because I added in a line. I also misjudged the time cross-county, and though he jumped beautifully we had some time.
It was really fun to watch Maya Black compete her horse, Doesn’t Play Fair. Mark my words, that combination is going to go far in this sport. He’s tiny but can really move and jump. Caitlin Calder also had great weekend on Jolliyat. We were so lucky to have my Mom here visiting and to help groom and support. It’s nice to have the A team!
I’ve never ridden in such nice weather at Pine Top—there must be something wrong with the atmosphere... I’m so excited for the next outing there, where I’ll have all four horses—Dukey will move up to Preliminary, JR will be in the Advanced, I might run Syd in the Intermediate for his first outing, and I’m giving Luminati some time to get fit and will do a couple more Preliminaries with him before moving back to Intermediate. I feel lucky to have four horses to ride; sometimes you need that many to have one!