Rocky’s Blogs- Showjumping Boot Camp
Showjumping Boot Camp 2020
Nana’s son Mark Wells is hosting his highly sought after Showjumping Boot Camp at some place called Ruakaka, 3 days for the adults followed by 4 days for kids. My job ( 3 hours drive away) is to be a support pony on the trips to the Ruakaka Surf Beach!!!
Nana calls herself the ” Team Manager”. Actually I am very important at times, 20 horses going 2 kilometres to the beach all together- some ponies and horses turn into lunatics when they see miles of ocean beach in front of them, my job is to keep them calm and ride-able…. not easy!
Anyway…. on the drive up the horse mover machine coughed and spluttered each time we got to big hills, and there were lots of hills, I could hear it and wondered what was going on. We arrived in the dark and Nana swore when the internal truck lights didn’t work, I could see to walk down the ramp, but apparently Nana couldn’t.
I was in the first group in the arena the next day, we were all pretty excited, I graze and live by myself so I love company, one of Marks clients had a ride on me first, her name is Jessie, very kind she was, we did some small jumps, I jumped them really big, but she stayed on.
Next day Sam’s horse was lame, so he and I partnered up and he rode me, Nana told Sam to expect some big leaps from me, into a grid with four crosses ( bounces) and then a one stride to a very low wide oxer, I didn’t know if I had to jump all four crosses at once or not….. Sam said the ” S ” word four times through the grid, I jumped it really we apparently, if a bit exuberantly.
The first beach ride went ok, I had to lead one horse and rider on the way home as it go beside itself on the beach, it was fine beside me when Nana put the lead rope on, that’s why I am there. This same horse was really good in the afternoon arena session, I was really impressed.
Day four for me… Naomi’s pony couldn’t come to the camp, so I was partnered up with her for this camp, we got on pretty well, it was four days of pretty technical jumping. Naomi and I couldn’t agree on the ” Take Off” spot for some jumps, she knew better than me, I should have left it to her every time, anyway, in the four days of jumping I had the odd rail down, but never a stop. When we miss the take off spot I am inclined to chip in a short stride, and get in too close, Mark was shouting at Naomi to push on hard in the last few strides before the jump, I got quite keen, then I was told to steady up a bit, lot’s to learn in a Show Jumping Boot Camp.
On my seventh day of jumping ( lots of small jumps through ) there was a ” Two Fence Challenge” this is when there are two jumps, and the second one gets bigger and bigger every time you jump it clear. There was five horses in it including me, I cleared it at 1.10m, Nana was so excited for Naomi and me, only 3 of us left…. then it was 1.20m and I just knocked it down, I hit the back rail and Nana was disappointed, but she was proud I could tell, she said the ” Game must be rigged” lol
Last day of the camp- clean up day, this is a part of the camp- it’s not all jumping, there had been a big storm the night before and the judges box at the edge of the arena and right next to my paddock fence had blown down in the huge winds, lucky it was me in that paddock and not some crazy Thoroughbred type! Time to go home, the place was very tidy, Mark makes sure of this, he must be ” OCD ” .
Nana’s other job on camp to to help with the human food, I kept hearing what a great help she is… from her of course lol- Anyway she was so tired, I should have walked up the ramp of the horse moving machine, Nana had to practically crawl up- Home to my lovely paddock! yay!!
Thanks for reading, more blogs coming, but maybe after a nap or two!