Event Report: our first ever BE80 @ LMEQ and we survived!

SirDuke

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Joined
9 August 2016
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43
So I wasn't sure whether to run or not as he had a rub on the inside of his shoulder (coat change = super sensitive horsey!) but we decided to take him and play it by ear and if he felt uncomfortable we would retire, so armed with a big tub of Vaseline, several sheepskin girth sleeves and hope we set off at 5am for our first ever event.

We arrived slightly later than I had hoped and it was a bit of a mad rush to get on, so our warm up was shorter than I think we needed for the dressage. Sid was very good but green and the atmosphere was a bit much for him - he couldn't decide what to spook at first! We also didn't have stud holes hence a slip in the dressage and a very tense horse and rider meant 46 penalties from dressage, which is a shame as he is capable of such a lovely test.

However, we swapped saddles, vaselined up yet again and went into the warm up for show jumping (where I was lucky not to get eliminated as I accidentally jumped the warm up jump the wrong way - I didn't realise it was a one way system!!) He spooked at the sponsor banners around the arena but as soon as we headed towards the fences he focused and felt amazing, making the course feel tiny! We had one pole and that was my fault as he landed on the wrong leg but I didn't change in time and he was unbalanced and disunited into the first part of a double, hence he tapped it.

We headed over to cross country and I was feeling quite nervous. However, Sid stormed over the warm up jumps and when our number was called we headed up to the start. Unfortunately, the start box was facing away from the warm up field but close enough that Sid could see all his new friends and the start headed towards a trailer, commentators and quad bikes. When we were counted down Sid left the start box and slammed the brakes on a few paces later. We then spent a very frustrating 45 seconds reversing, going sideways, anywhere but the right way! I was mortified! But once he graciously decided to stop being melodramatic we were off and he felt incredible! He flew the first two jumps and then we had a nice gallop down the track. He was a bit confused about all the people around and the fence judges, and he flinched every time he heard a whistle go off, but he soon settled and took me home clear despite corner jumps, ditches and scary rustling flowers and we only had 20 time penalties (which I think probably equates to the time spent napping at the start) so I was so incredibly pleased with him.

Finished the day smiling and so excited to come back and do some more next season!

Thanks to all who gave me advice beforehand and all of the lovely stewards, judges, volunteers etc who answered my (probably very stupid) questions. And to anyone thinking of giving it a go - DO IT :D
 

Michen

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Joined
22 January 2014
Messages
7,654
Awesome well done! But where are the pics...

So I wasn't sure whether to run or not as he had a rub on the inside of his shoulder (coat change = super sensitive horsey!) but we decided to take him and play it by ear and if he felt uncomfortable we would retire, so armed with a big tub of Vaseline, several sheepskin girth sleeves and hope we set off at 5am for our first ever event.

We arrived slightly later than I had hoped and it was a bit of a mad rush to get on, so our warm up was shorter than I think we needed for the dressage. Sid was very good but green and the atmosphere was a bit much for him - he couldn't decide what to spook at first! We also didn't have stud holes hence a slip in the dressage and a very tense horse and rider meant 46 penalties from dressage, which is a shame as he is capable of such a lovely test.

However, we swapped saddles, vaselined up yet again and went into the warm up for show jumping (where I was lucky not to get eliminated as I accidentally jumped the warm up jump the wrong way - I didn't realise it was a one way system!!) He spooked at the sponsor banners around the arena but as soon as we headed towards the fences he focused and felt amazing, making the course feel tiny! We had one pole and that was my fault as he landed on the wrong leg but I didn't change in time and he was unbalanced and disunited into the first part of a double, hence he tapped it.

We headed over to cross country and I was feeling quite nervous. However, Sid stormed over the warm up jumps and when our number was called we headed up to the start. Unfortunately, the start box was facing away from the warm up field but close enough that Sid could see all his new friends and the start headed towards a trailer, commentators and quad bikes. When we were counted down Sid left the start box and slammed the brakes on a few paces later. We then spent a very frustrating 45 seconds reversing, going sideways, anywhere but the right way! I was mortified! But once he graciously decided to stop being melodramatic we were off and he felt incredible! He flew the first two jumps and then we had a nice gallop down the track. He was a bit confused about all the people around and the fence judges, and he flinched every time he heard a whistle go off, but he soon settled and took me home clear despite corner jumps, ditches and scary rustling flowers and we only had 20 time penalties (which I think probably equates to the time spent napping at the start) so I was so incredibly pleased with him.

Finished the day smiling and so excited to come back and do some more next season!

Thanks to all who gave me advice beforehand and all of the lovely stewards, judges, volunteers etc who answered my (probably very stupid) questions. And to anyone thinking of giving it a go - DO IT :D
 

monte1

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Joined
14 December 2009
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1,112
Location
Hampshire
well done, sounds like a really good start to your eventing career, love your boy, he is very handsome
looking foward to hearing about your next event !
 

SirDuke

Active Member
Joined
9 August 2016
Messages
43
Thanks everyone, I've learned tonnes and can't wait to put it to good use next season! My horse is absolutely incredible, he's not naturally very brave or bold (he's a big wuss!) but he is growing in confidence massively and he is such a trier which is all I can ask of him :D
 

Nicnaclaus

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Joined
9 May 2007
Messages
6,838
Well done! You both look really smart.

Apologies for Sponsors banners around the arena - some of those are mine.

20 TPs is really good if he was napping for 45 seconds - you must have flown round the rest. Good job he flew off as 2 mins napping = elimination; another rule to be aware of. The BE rule book makes for good winter reading as some events apply the rules with far more gusto than others ;-)
 

SirDuke

Active Member
Joined
9 August 2016
Messages
43
Well done! You both look really smart.

Apologies for Sponsors banners around the arena - some of those are mine.

20 TPs is really good if he was napping for 45 seconds - you must have flown round the rest. Good job he flew off as 2 mins napping = elimination; another rule to be aware of. The BE rule book makes for good winter reading as some events apply the rules with far more gusto than others ;-)
Thanks! I thought the banners looked great but Sid seemed to think they were going to eat him, sigh...

Thanks there was two really nice gallop stretches and he absolutely flew round, it did feel a bit fast haha but I just knew we had time to make up. I think someone else got eliminated for napping for too long so I am so glad he decided to play ball as I was in full view of everyone at the start and that would have been slightly embarrassing haha.
 

SirDuke

Active Member
Joined
9 August 2016
Messages
43
Well done! What a lovely report.

I've popped the photos you linked to on here.





Your smile says it all! I didn't know that you could get corners at BE80, but there you are flying over one.

Great stuff.
Thank you very much, no me neither I thought it was a bit of a technical course as you have a bird feeder, a few strides to steps up then you come down the hill and straight onto the corner so they are travelling quite fast. He was a very good boy as he usually takes the chance to slip out the side of anything narrow/odd-looking so I was chuffed!
 

Bernster

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Joined
14 August 2011
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7,015
Location
London
Oh fantastic, well done. Lovely pics. I'm a wobbleberry so aiming for our first 80 next year, so I will be be following you with interest,
 

SirDuke

Active Member
Joined
9 August 2016
Messages
43
Oh fantastic, well done. Lovely pics. I'm a wobbleberry so aiming for our first 80 next year, so I will be be following you with interest,
Thank you! You won't regret it, it was so much fun! Which events are you going to go to next year? I think if you are near me, Munstead is supposed to be quite a good first event?
 
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