Cross Country Thread!

Sandstone1

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Yesterday has me teetering in the edge of the rabbit hole about what we inflict on horses for our enjoyment...

The falls, the bits (hands!), the (tight) noseband, the spurs, the whips (Julia Norman stood out to me on bbc coverage) and the hard hits (mainly stifles and fetlocks) from solid fences. All for our enjoyment 😒 😬 🙈
I've never been a huge fan of eventing to be honest but I had the same kind of thoughts. Is it right to put horses through this kind of thing in the name of sport? I'm not sure.....
 

Clodagh

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On the reduction in the use of martingales there where some horses where a martingale would have made their experience more pleasant.
I have no issue with the use of martingales but it is a pleasure to watch a horse so well schooled and happy in the mouth that it has no need of one.
 

Equibrit

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How come they announced the First Timer award for Sebastien Cavaillon (61) when Ariel Grald (57.7) finished in front of him according to bdwp.co.uk?
 

Honey08

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To be fair, Zara falls off xc quite a lot! We go to a good few big events and its become a standing joke for us that she always falls off when my husband is there (he wasnt there yesterday so cant be blamed!)

Watching the highlights again, it just shows that a lot of the good riders, bith early and later, rode lovely over the tricky fences. But they clearly had a lot of control and were able to check horses back before the big fences and really set up. Most of the riders that came a cropper hurtled at the fences on long, often wrong, strides.. I dont even think hunting would help them (I bet a lot already hunt), it was the technical fences which were unlike anything you'd find hunting that caused the problems.

Id like to see this course left much as it is (apart from the white gates) and have Tina Cook, Nicola Wilson, Andrew Nicholson, Ros Canter, Tom McEwan, Harry Meade, Micheal Yung, Ingrid, Astier Nicolas (and anyone else that level Ive missed) go round it next year. I bet it would have been a really good Burghley with a totally different xc day if the field hadnt been so inexperienced. I think Burghley needs criticism for not pulling up a few riders that were consistantly bad at several fences before they fell, but not for the course.

Anyway, Im pleased the top 3 stayed the same. Id quite liked Piggy to have been able to do the grandslam though... Pippa may not have been as elegant in her jumping phases, but she worked hard to get that young horse round, and her dressage was stunning.
 

Jeni the dragon

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Honey08 I agree with you, but I thought the other things riders did at the maltings was kill the canter. It certainly looked like what GT did. It then became a visious circle with it riding badly.
But I'm so pleased for PF. She was so overjoyed, and I must admit to shedding a few tears.
 

Tiddlypom

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Side on view of fence 10A, the first jump (for the short route) at the Trout Hatchery. It has collapsible pins and clips for both the front and the back elements (not sure of their technical names, but it was a different arrangement for the front and the back rails).

90D2C38F-5BC4-47AC-B98E-E1216232DBCE.jpeg

Horses seemed to balloon over it, and a number landed short and collapsed the rear rail. The fence repair team was very busy. However, the good combinations made it all seem very easy. The landing was on falling ground and the horse will likely have suddenly spotted the water beyond in mid air, although the landing itself was on dry ground.
 

splashgirl45

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honey08, i agree re the riders who had problems should have been pulled up, one of the horses that really crashed into one of the fences should not have continued IMO, he was not presented this morning and the rider said he was a little sore on his stifle and the horses welfare was the most important thing.....what tosh, if he had been thinking of the horses welfare he would have retired,not continued over a huge course, when he pulled up at the end i could see it was lame on a hind but he bought it back to walk very quickly....another who had a crashing fall was buck davison, at least he couldnt continue as he was on the floor... he should know how to approach a fence in the correct manner by now, he is nowhere near as good as his dad was....

i notice that none of the really bad falls were shown on bbc2, burghley needs to pull its socks up for next year and not allow such big spreads one after the other without a let up.. i know it is a 5 star but some of the riders shouldnt have been there....
 

oldie48

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honey08, i agree re the riders who had problems should have been pulled up, one of the horses that really crashed into one of the fences should not have continued IMO, he was not presented this morning and the rider said he was a little sore on his stifle and the horses welfare was the most important thing.....what tosh, if he had been thinking of the horses welfare he would have retired,not continued over a huge course, when he pulled up at the end i could see it was lame on a hind but he bought it back to walk very quickly....another who had a crashing fall was buck davison, at least he couldnt continue as he was on the floor... he should know how to approach a fence in the correct manner by now, he is nowhere near as good as his dad was....

i notice that none of the really bad falls were shown on bbc2, burghley needs to pull its socks up for next year and not allow such big spreads one after the other without a let up.. i know it is a 5 star but some of the riders shouldnt have been there....
That's putting a huge responsibility on fence judges, how on earth are they to know if the horse has hurt itself? Riders and horses are pumped full of adrenaline and horses won't necessarily show an injury nor will the rider notice it. Riders and horses also make mistakes and live to tell the tale, how does a fence judge decide which rider to stop and which to let go on?The course had lots of alternatives, if you want to criticise riders then I think it should be on the basis that they did not always take the long route when it would have been wise . All of the fences jumped well when ridden well, and let's be very honest here, Pippa, riding an inexperienced horse at this level, looked pretty dodgy on occasions, should she have been stopped? Perhaps the biggest issue was that the time was too tight. I have seen more worrying combinations out doing 80s/90's and 100's. You don't need to be jumping a huge fence to kill yourself or injure your horse.
 

Lexi_

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From an FJ perspective, with one exception*, you absolutely never ever stop a rider unless you’ve been told to by Control. There is no way that the FJs just decide to pull riders up. The most you can do is radio through and say that rider X looks a bit out of control. If they get a few of those in a row, the ground jury (or BE steward/TD if it’s a BE event) will keep an eye out and consider stopping them. It’s a very big decision to make, especially at this level.

Having said that, I wish a few of the riders at Burghley had been stopped. There was some really unpleasant and scary riding going on and I’m interested to see if it results in any FEI cards or warnings.

Also, while I’m on my FJ soapbox, I’m willing to put money on the fact that the person at the gates fence who got some sarky comments on here for being on her phone had been told to use it to video riders over her fence, once they realised it was causing problems. The skinny/corner fences had been given tablets to do the recording but they’d be unlikely to have it at that sort of fence as a default.

(*There is one exception - when your fence is broken/dangerous and Control aren’t answering. It’s rare but it happens).
 

TPO

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A ray of sunshine 🌞
I did think the videoing FJ/steward at the gates was filming for business use, so to speak. I think the horse got handed to her and she was careful to change hands but keep filming. I'd imagine in this day and age you cant be too careful and have to film everything "just in case"

Now that I've edged away from the rabbit hole and reached some of the XC on the bbc coverage I have a slightly different perspective.

When Tim went out on course first it looked like a bold, attacking course but rideable. Obviously he's amazingly talented and not a mere mortal but his round was practically textbook.

As previously said I think we would all have ended yesterday with a better taste in our mouth if the germans, andrew, william and co had all been riding there.

I do think there were some disasters waiting to happen, and they did, where stewards should have pulled combinations up. However I do appreciate how hard a call that would have been and how difficult the resulting fallout would have been.

Her name escapes me (Charlotte Clarke?), the dentist, who pulled up on course. I'd imagine being there was a (very expensive) dream come true but she chose to retire when her horse didnt feel right rather than push on to say she had completed Burghley. We needed a lot more of that horsemanship. I can appreciate when the blood is up and you have owners and financial responsibilities that is not an easy call for everyone to be able to make.

On reflection you dont get experience without doing. However I think a lot of the greener riders should have taken the long routes. A slow completion beats a fall any day of the week. I'm not up on the stats but I didnt seem many long routes being utilised on the live feed.

I will never event at 5* but I can imagine if you make it there then you want the fairytale win and I can imagine the cost to get there that not going for it isnt really an option. Again with the benefit of hindsight a lot more could have been learnt and achieved by perhaps using the first visit at 5* as an educational experience for horse and rider rather than how many rounds ended.

I haven't looked into it but a thread on another eventing page has some scary reports that some riders only just scraped MERs, one had never ridden advanced (?), some hadn't had a clear xc round at lower levels and something about someone last doing something in 2015. If they qualify on paper I dont know how you can legislate for sense or a lack of as to readiness for a massive step up?
 
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