Thursday – Team Test

Well what a day

This morning saw a warm up from 6 til 7 for the Young Rider World Cup horses but it became a free for all for every dressage horse and showjumpers.

There  was 21  horses in the 20 x 60 at one time with another 10 around the outside!

Megan did a great job to even get in there and do some work and her mare is a worrier about other horses so it was not perfect but a great experience and it was OK.

So it was a very cold day and at 2 in the afternoon it was still minus 4!

Plaited up and already for a 6.50 draw and a few hours before this start time it started to snow really quite heavily!

The wind picked up and it was freezing cold.

We started the warm up in the stable area arena and walked with rugs on for 15 minutes and then went to the warm up next to the indoor. It’s a huge marquis and with the weight of the snow it was sagging a little and then as the snow slipped off the roof it was a really bad noise and feeling but it was worse as when the snow was off the roof the whole tent was billowing in and out and the snow was wafting in under the edges!

The snow would build up again and the whole structure would creak and grown and then the snow would fall off again and so on.

There were all the grand prix and small tour horses in there as well and its about 30 metres square with poles in the middle. No longside no twenty metre dimension and crowded.  Surely no ideal but that’s life at these comps and everyone just copes.

Megan stayed super focused and cool and Stella was actually showing some great stuff between snow drifts and loony horses sideways everywhere.

Time to go in and all timed so well.

As the previous horse came out through the race Stella was trotting in and was great and a few mteres from the entry the gate person who was on his phone drew the huge red curtains closed in Stellas face! Already a bit tweeked up it was bad and she propped reared up spun around and cleared the alley of people and even the jack russels scattered! She headed swiftly back toward the warm up and was not going back to those red curtains again!

She did as I walked beside her and Megan was very logical and composed and she is a tough competitor and was back on the job. As there is no room to trot around the outside you start from inside the arena. As we were a minute at least returning form the curtain incident poor Megan had only a circuit and they rang the bell ! I fear they did not realize the carryon that the gate attendant had created! ( Not Good at all)

So on with the show and in the hassle of the gate carryon the arena crew did not put the letter A back at its place but 2 metres away on the side!

No centerline and no markers not easy!?????

Megan was off to a good start and at the end of the trot work it was a running score of 65.8%.   Pretty good considering!

In the walk it was ok but one step missed in the 2nd walk pirouette and the marks go down to 61% ???!!! whatever and it was on the way up bit by bit.

The changes were all clean and the pirouettes the best control there has been so it was all positive.

Lets be honest here it was not good enough and needed to be sharper quicker and more expressive.

Megan was disappointed in the test a little but on the other hand was pleased that this was a warm up test and counted for nothing perhaps a bit of pride and of course disappointment but Megan is logical and analytical and wonderful in her attitude.

It was a great experience and we have sat down looked at the video and realize there were many marks lost that can be easily retrieved and retrieving them easily tomorrow will bring her up in the top 6.  There was merely 1.5% between 5th and 11th spot !!!

Tommorow is another day and believe me its do or die and we are all out to set the place on fire

Stella is first out and nothing to lose and a really expressive test

Less warm up. First out means no one in the warm up and the crowd will be down not that Stella worried about that tonight.

We cant wait to back in there

We are out to represent Australia and that we will do and tomo it will be better.

Ebver test is a learning experience and it was good to have that test today.

I am not kidding when I say that it was a tough warm up!

You always live and learn and tomorrow will be the proof to see if we have.

By the way the German horses were simply amazing and the 1st and 2nd were both riders of Olmpics family history in dressage! It helps.

Put them in Australia in the country area and see if the outcome would have been the same.

No sour grapes at all the winners deserving and the judging fair but tough on the bottom ¾ and lenient on the ones they knew at the top ¼!

All fair I reckon we just have to get better and tomorrow is a challenge

Hope it will be good to get in the top 6 is the challenge and we are up to it!

See what  happens

Roger

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