Thursday, July 17, 2008

First Triple Combination!

El Brego de Oro and I had a big day during our jumping lesson. We jumped our first triple! Brego was impressed, he catapulted me clean out of the saddle. The trainer set it up so the first element was an oxer, then 21' feet to a vertical, then 19' feet to the third vertical. It was a tough technical question for us: how to control the scope over the oxer to get enough impulsion to squeeze in the verticals. Since Brego is not the most careful jumper, it was an eye opening experience.

Riding our First Triple Combination! from Eventing Percheron on Vimeo.

In general, we had a great ride. Brego is such a jumper, he loves to get big air. Unfortunately, I do not love how I am riding big air. We focused on technical issues with Brego and not my position tonight, since my trainer deems me effective "enough". When I watch the video, I am still falling back in the air, so my position is going to be a factor when we start taking rails behind. But for now, Brego has the scope to compensate.

My trainer also focused on my upper body, asking me to stay more upright and control the ducking. He wanted a following release, not a crest release, to support Brego through the combinations. My hands did fine, but my elbows were in mid-flight as always.

We worked a lot on me supporting him off the ground at verticals. Since he is less impressed with them, I need to really get him off my leg and support him off the ground. If I drop my upper body and go too soft, he will take the rail.

I was very pleased with the rides in general. Brego was nicely self propelled. The canter work I had been doing all week showed through in his departures and balance on course. I felt like I had some horse under me, even when we weren't going mach 3 around the course. He was able to spring off the ground thanks to his nice canter. Until he got tired, he felt really good. If I could remember to ask for the lead in the air, he got it. Otherwise he threw in some nice swaps.

My trainer and I talked some more about taking Brego to some jumper shows in the fall. He said it was too bad we weren't in Ireland. In Ireland, they take cash bets at the ring and he said Brego would make some serious money. No one would bet him to go clear. It made me laugh, contemplating a future career on Brego's jumping ability. A scary thought.

All in all, I am pleased with our work. I tend to be critical of my riding (as if you hadn't noticed) so I am trying not to expect perfection, but just look at the overall picture. We're getting around the course in a smart manner, no more scrambling. We take some rails, but that's a lot of my fault. Sometimes I don't understand the questions being asked, like I moved Brego up in the triple when instead I should have half-halted.

As always, the lesson pushed me, but left me with a feeling of confidence. We worked on some tough stuff, way more than I can expect in my upcoming shows. So if I can keep my head and think through the course, we should do well.


Tripple Spring said...

Y'all look great!!! Congrats!

bluejmpr said...

Now you know who to bet on if you ever go to Ireland!!! The biggest in the bunch. Great job, the both of you- to you allowing him to think on his own and figure things out and to him for having such heart and willingness. You both are an inspiration for others who love the big breeds! (and I are too critical of yourself. You ride him wonderfully!)

Beckz said...

He looks good as, definitely got more spring, more rythym and more power.

Wiola said...

He is indeed a careful jumper! Well ridden!
I would take your stirrups two holes up - it should stabilise your lower leg and close your joints more. This gives you more freedom in your upper body and arms so you may notice improvement there automatically.

Anonymous said...


I love the triples!

Daun said...

Thanks for all the enthusiasm everyone! I hope everyone is enjoying the hi def video. I know I love the clarity for studying.

Excellent suggestion as always. After the show this weekend, I am going to get some longe line lessons and no hands grids in and shortening the stirrups is a big part of that. There is something fundamental I am missing in my position and I just need to find it and then I think a lot of things will snap into place. It seems I have an instinct, but not the execution.

Thanks, Beckz. I really appreciate your input since you've been around the longest, it seems. You've really kept up with us so it's good to hear about what you see. Thanks!

Serena said...

Not to be redundant, but you both look great! :-) Miss Roxie is going to have to start jumping one of these days, i think.

Anonymous said...

I second the shortening stirrups thing... I just got a mini jumping lesson (because I am SUPER rusty) and I was struggling until we shorted my stirrups a hole. It was crazy how much better I felt! Hopefully it will be magical for you too :)

As always, I love watching you guys jump... He just looks so light and not drafty on course! :D