5 June Showjumping Competition
 By Polo the Weirdo   •   12th Jun 2010   •   6,098 views   •   3 comments
On 05 June 2010 I attended a showjumping competition with my wonderful horses: Choc, Finola and Badger.

Choc was entered in the 1m classes. She completed her first trial round at 1m the previous weekend with just 1 pole down, so this time we were ready to step it up a notch. The little horse was phenomenal. Despite all the illnesses and injuries she has dealt with recently, despite the fact that she is only 5 years old, she jumped clear. Of course, we now faced the prospect of having to do a jump off at a height of 1,10m. I was painfully aware of the fact that this height might be too much for Choc at this stage, but my doubts proved to be in vain. Again, she tried her little heart out and jumped clear, leaving us placed 7th out of 30 entries. The next class was a speed class, and this time I decided to start incorporating the speedy skills we had at 90cm into a 1m course. Choc responded brilliantly, staying balanced and together throughout the whole course, yet shaving loads of seconds off our time with some tricky shortcuts and angled jumps. In that class, she finished 3rd! I could not be prouder of her. She jumps better each time she goes out and even at a bigger height, the quality of her performance has not dwindled.

For the full story of Choc, please see this article: Boomerang Effect – The Story of Choc Chip.

Showjumping Competition
Choc in the 1m speed class

Badger was entered in the 1,10m class. This was a very difficult decision for me, because I know that over bigger jumps, Badger and I do not always work all that well. I had competed him in 1,10m last year, but since then we’ve had some very sticky spots, and I was reluctant to push the limits again. Our main problem is that he is rather a lazy creature, and I struggle to see strides on him. All the same, I decided it was time I got over my doubts and gave it another try. For this fateful decision I have Miss Paradox to thank, for she convinced me to try again, boosted my confidence and gave me a few pointers to get in sync with Badger, all of which helped a lot! She is a truly wonderful person, and I can never thank her enough for helping me to change my negative mindset and start moving on up yet again.

On Friday, the day before the show, I was taking Badger around a course of 1,10m jumps at home, just to make sure that we were ready. We had one jump left at 90cm, and ironically enough, it was that 90cm jump that caught us. I saw a long stride and I rode for it, only to realize at the last moment that it was too long, but by that time it was too late to do anything. Badger jumped it, got tangled up in the pole and almost went down. I went over his head when his knees hit the ground, then ended up under his hooves. Literally. I now have a dent in my helmet from where he stood on my head, though thankfully we were both uninjured, and got up to do the course again, including the offending 90cm jump up to 1m and 1,10m.

If anything, that incident only increased my determination, so when I loaded the horses into the box on Saturday morning, I had no intention of pulling out. Our warm-up went smoothly enough, so we went in for the first round. It was quite sticky and untidy, a few misjudged strides, often disunited, but not as bad as it could have been. We reached the end with a clear round. Now, to my dismay, I realized that I would have to do the 1,20m jump off on Badger! Though we were ready for 1,10m, I had not been expecting to get into a jump off and have to jump 1,20m right away! Thankfully, we were on a roll by then, and we just kept rolling. Our jump off was much smoother, the strides were good and Badger went very well. We had 2 poles down, but I could not have been happier with our round. Badger horse was simply amazing! I am so proud of him. The next class was the speed class, and I felt this might have been the best round I have managed to do on Badger in a long time. All our strides were good, the round was smooth, and our speed was average. We clipped one pole down when Badger decided to have a llama moment and goggle at a jump that he had already done perfectly confidently twice that day… Well, that’s horses for you. Unpredictable until the end of time!

Showjumping Competition

Showjumping Competition
Badger in the jump off at 1,20m

Finola was entered in the 1,20m class. She arrived at the show psyched and ready to go. She stayed that way throughout the day. Our warm-up consisted of a few desperate attempts on my part to get Finola’s attention and make her settle on to the bit and work nicely. Finola had other ideas. She trotted around like a stubborn school pony with her head miles in the air and her neck stuck out stiffly in front of her. When it came time to jump, she would take one look at the jump, bolt towards it, fly leap when I tried to slow her, then turn sideways as a compromise between speed and obedience. Typical Finola. Thankfully, I have long since learned to deal with her psycho nonsense, and we managed to warm up without any crashes. Once in the arena, she almost settled down to business. Almost. She went around the course fly leaping every so often, and occasionally turning sideways. All the same, it was a good, smooth round and left me feeling that Finola truly is becoming what she was 2 years earlier, before all the drama began. She clipped down the panels, probably for the simple reason that she hasn’t too much respect for such flimsy-looking jumps. The next class, the speed class, went down pretty much the same way, only somewhat more spectacularly. She dashed around the course at a blistering pace, jumping at an angle and swerving around tight turns to have the fastest time by far, but clipped down the panels again. In the end, she just missed the places, finishing 5th where prizes were awarded down to 4th.
For the full story of Finola please see this article: From square one – The full story of Finola.

Showjumping Competition
Finola in the 1,20m speed class

Overall I found it a very successful day, and I was very pleased with each horse’s performance. I would like to thank Miss Paradox once again for convincing me to get jumping with Badger once again. It really was a great feeling riding that horse around a big course again.
Horse News More In This Category:  Shows and Events      Horse News More From This Author:  Polo the Weirdo
Hevn Extra Barn 3  
Polo! Your posion is almost FLAWLESS:D Your going to be one of the best riders this world has ever had, keep up the great work!
  Jun 12, 2010  •  4,911 views
You are wonderful! Love flying on a horse! YEAH!
  Jun 13, 2010  •  4,918 views
Polo the Weirdo  MOD 
Hevn: Aaaaaw, thanks so much, that is a really, really nice thing to say! :D *glomps* Dreamer100: Naaaw, thank you! ^_^ Hehe! It is awesome, right? :P Such amazing creatures... :')
  Jun 14, 2010  •  4,900 views
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