1. No stops XC or stadium
2. Don't get eliminated
We had a steady and fairly normal dressage test, Annie warms up well but she's still not obedient enough in the dressage ring to not want to have her head up and look at things. We've been working really hard on our trot canter transitions and she NAILED both of those, even her right lead. We ended up tied for 4th which was fantastic.
I got to meet Cobjockey in person for the first time, she was on her way to dressage and I was on my way back from dressage and the conversation went like this "Hi, are you cobjockey? I'm weanieeventer!" I'm sure it sounded odd to outsiders.
LAZ arrived in time to warm us up for show jumping which was a good thing as I was slowly beginning to panic. All Annie wanted to do was nap behind the bit and then canter off and I didn't feel comfortable at all. LAZ told me to select the gait I wanted, insist on it, and ride her into the bit in it. I think she made us jump the stupid oxer more then we ever have before all shows totalled up together!
Annie was pretty good show jumping, she did gawk at a few things so I brought her down to the trot when she was on the wrong lead but we cantered most of it just fine. Fence 7 I had decided would be our bogey fence. It was larger (to me), very bright, and at the side of the ring with the most activity. I keep my eyes up, my leg on, and RODE MY PATH. Annie really wanted to wiggle out of it but I didn't let her. It also really helped having LAZ standing right next to the fence, nothing motivates you more then not stopping at a fence right in front of your trainer!
Here's a nice picture taken by LAZ.
We ended up double clear after stadium (I usually have time so yayyy!!!) and still tied for 4th.
I was mostly calm for XC warm up, even when LAZ had me canter down to the oxer and vertical. Sigh.
We cracked right off out of the start box and jumped fence one boldly..... then ground to a halt. Trees, bushes, open spaces, and mud. I whacked and whacked and kicked and eventually motivated Annie. Then there was some mud in front of fence two, more whacking and I think we jumped fence 2 sideways.
Then there was more mood, stone dust footing, and A GOLF CART lurking menacingly in the woods.
Eventually I got her feet moving again and we jumped fence 3, the bank. This is us looking like we're out for a park horse class and not a HT. This picture kindly taken by http://myhorsesloveeventing.blogspot.com/ who I got to meet in person.
We made it into the open field and we were on a roll. I could be heard saying things like "That's none of your business over there, you do your job" and "See the fence Annie? Jump that fence!"
Then we came to our bogey fence
Then we slammed to a halt on the road to the water. The footing was different, there were cars, and people, and so many things to look at! WHACK! WHACK! Go Annie! Move your feet Annie! Come on Annie!
After I got her moving we snorted all the way to the water, which I decided to take the option on. With as many time faults as we had I didn't want to risk a stop at the water even though she'd never had a problem with water schooling and at our last HT (which she'd schooled through before) I figured better safe then sorry. Next time.
After that we were on a roll and found our groove, over the last two fences. We finished with an obscene amount of time penalties but since everyone else had stops it was good enough for 5th place.
So, what have we learned?
I was very very happy with our placing. Annie has only ever schooled at LAZ's place and she doesn't get out much besides that. We need to get out different places to increase her confidence in scary new places. I'm better at riding my plan and I kept thinking "over under or through" in my head. I didn't back off to any of my fences and kept my hands down. Dressage will come with more miles. I'm really looking forward to the next time we can get out there and attack it!