Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Not every round is a winning round

This is an interesting round, although not one the rider would care to repeat, I bet. The horse seems immensely talented, and the rider capable and gutsy. What happened? You can hear some of the conjecture, that the horse wants to go through the out gate. To me it looks like something about the jump, or its placement.

The spectators who are videotaping note that the rider walks away from the horse, leaving him with the trainer. It's a situation I might be tempted to walk away from too, but I suppose it doesn't look too sportsmanlike from where the spectator sits.


  1. i can understand walking away from the horse if she didn't own it and was just riding for someone else, if she was hurt, in other situations i would say stay with the horse

  2. Well, it happens. I'm not too keen about the trainer's taking the horse either, but we don't quite know the circumstances.

    Wonder what got the horse to act up as afterwards he seemed quite willing to jump...until he got to that same spot and she fell off.

  3. It looked to me like the trainer kind of waved her off and told the rider she'd take care of it. Maybe I was seeing something that wasn't there, but that was my impression. The rider did walk over to the horse and trainer, but then words are exchanged, and the rider walks off.

    I don't jump, so I'm no expert, but it did look like there was something about that particular jump that make the horse squeamish. Otherwise he was doing a good job.

  4. Personally, I don't think it had anything to do with the jump. The horse didn't suddenly peek and spook...he was refusing to go forward before he even turned to face the jump. From the way the rider was handling the rearing situation, I feel like this is probably something that isn't completely out of the norm for this horse. The trainer's screaming commentary from the gate seems to reinforce that idea. If the rearing was totally out of the blue, she probably would have been more concerned about the rider's safety than just getting over the jump.

    Also, I agree with hls..when the trainer caught the horse, the rider DID walk over to him and the trainer definitely looked like she told the rider that she had the situation under control.

    Although a very talented and capable pair, either this horse has a massive hole in his training or he really is just that opinionated about things. Rearing is one of the worst and biggest resistances to a rider's leg aids to move forward.

  5. Appeared to me that the rider made an abrupt turn toward the fence and it surprised the horse. Hard to tell from a shaky video, but the jump looks like it was placed close to the wall with a short approach. Even when the horse took the fence he jumped from an awkward spot.

    It looked to me like the trainer waved off the rider. We don't know what they said to one another. For all we know, the rider needed tending, also.

    Nice looking horse, but.... Looked like the rider had to take some massive checks before each fence. The horse is really forward until he stops to rear? What's that all about?

  6. The first refusal looks like it was a result of an approach without enough collection and momentum; the rider may have been trying to do too tight & angled of a turn for where the horse was at in terms of speed and take-off ability.

    Maybe they were just having an off day; you can see he took off long at the first fence and a little short on the second. And she was really having to haul back and pull him in after each jump after that third fence. That's what got her the short distance at the first fence of the second fall. Just goes to show EVERYONE can always benefit from being able to collect and extend!

    That said, I am in a weak position to judge-I am not sure I would have done as good a job maintaining my composure with a ride like that over some pretty decently sized fences!

  7. I don't think this horse was spooked by the fence at all he was napping before he even came out of the turn. I have the impression that this junior rider isn't that experienced, because she doesn't have a very good eye for her spots. She didn't move up when she needed to, just relied on his scope.

    So I get the impression he is a more experienced horse who is taking the piss out of his rider. When she fell the horse didn't really have any option but to stop as she buried him in that double. Stunning jumper, I'd take him :)

  8. he wants to be a dressage horse.

    That was not a typical refusal, but I'm not a hunter/jumper person.

    The rearing is a problem - perhaps even pain related. But the rider seemed to not deal with the rearing like I'm used to either.... oh well.

  9. Not that I'm an expert, but I would think it was more of a physical issue. It looked to be a pretty tight turn for him, and he went wide. If it was a spook at the jump he would never have turned his back to it (or gone backwards in that direction, which put him closer to it). Sadly, horses can have a fairly high tolerance for pain; this enables a willing horse (and he looked to be willing) to continue to try to "do the job" until they just can't take it anymore. She never should have left the horse, though, that part I do know for sure (and I don't mean the unscheduled dismount, I mean the walking away part ;o)

  10. Raw talent will only get you so far!

    Looks like an immensely talented pair who have been over-faced by the difficulty of the course. The horse can certainly jump, but my guess would be that they need more practice and preparation. For example, I was very surprised when she made the hard right-hand turn to the third fence. It should be obvious to both spectators and the horse (!) which fence is next on course. The lack of smoothness makes me suspect a lack of preparation. Also, I would guess that this horse can jump the moon and is being asked to do so (or was asked to do so) unfairly early in his training. The rearing does not look like a new feat for this horse. He/she has probably been faced with seemingly insurmountable tasks before. His/her behavior has escalated to an extreme rearing display which has frustration and despair written all over it. The horse's protests are most likely always in vain as he is forced to tackle training questions that he is not ready to answer. I do not think that you need to be a jumper to see the horse's expression and know something is wrong. Yes, he is resisting the "forward" cue from his rider, but he/she is also smart and self-preservative. I hope someone takes a step back and gives the horse time to build his confidence, skills, and trust in the rider. I am sure that the rider would equally benefit from time and reflection.
    Please see:

  11. I'm with you. It looked like there was something about the jump he didn't like. He even seemed scared while he did jump it. I don't know anything about jumping though so an experienced person probably can see something I don't.

  12. Nobody said anything about maybe the horse being ring sour, although I agree with Beckz and Live to fly. I think it is an issue they've been having that maybe some relaxing riding would fix, take a break from schooling so the horse can enjoy working again. As for walking off, who knows... being a groom for so long I've seen some weird things happen between student and trainer.

  13. The horse looks very talented, the rider, less so. She had flat hands and pumped with her upper body. I got the impression the horse ditched her because he was sick of her hanging on his mouth and he has some bad behaviors, period. Trainer yelling from the gate sort of confirms their insecurity in his performance. I would agree with the ring-sour thing. She seemed to have balance but not as strong of a base as perhaps the level of competition warranted. Looked to me like he was just done with the whole thing...and won.

  14. My first thought when she started cantering around, was that the horse seemed extremely sluggish, like he didn't really want to go forward. The entire time, I felt he needed more momentum to jump.
    I really didn't like the way the rider handled that rearing episode. I felt she was using too much hand during it. Sure, she shouldn't back off completely, but she seemed very rough with her hands, actually even jerking back once. I wonder if she's very heavy-handed and that the horse knows this. After she got going again, he looked to me like he was sort of backing off the bit. Not in a very obvious way, but I thought overall there was a lot of tension.
    I don't know anything about jumping, but my gut feeling isthat they should focus on getting him to canter forward more freely before they jump him. He should just be going long, low and forward, without even thinking about collecting for a while.

    As for the walking off: technically not very sportsmanlike, but it did seem like the trainer was waving her off.

  15. Looks to me like a talented Jr's parents bought her a horse to take her up to the higher lvls. unfortunately this jr has been riding push button packers for her entire riding career (you know like 5 whole years!) and when you go from packer to high lvl jumping talent the ride is completely different. These are sensitive fine tuned athletes used to a pro rider putting them into the perfect position for them to do their job. You put little miss 'know-it-all' out there with a less forgiving mount and this kind of stuff happens. She will either learn how to be a sensitive thoughtful rider or she wont. Most of the time they wont and they will ruin this young talented jumpers confidance, but thats h/j land, the crap end of it anyways.

  16. From the very start the horse was behind the rider's leg. Or rather, I think the rider was at fault for not having any leg actually ON the horse. The other commenter was right, her hands are also all over the place. To boot, I think the horse is ring-sour and has some bad habits. Not a good pair in my mind. But no, I don't see anything wrong with the way the girl walked away at the end. There were words exchanged with the trainer and who knows what was said.


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