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Beginner Novice: Help me gain some confidence!

This is a discussion on Beginner Novice: Help me gain some confidence! within the Eventing forums, part of the English Riding category
  • Horse trials fall in water
  • Bn stadium jump heights

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    01-21-2011, 09:31 AM
Here's a couple more. These are all from last summer/fall. I think they should be about BN height.
I'm just jealous that you are going to be moving up (or thinking about it). Taking on my new TB is going to be rewarding in the end but really feels like taking three steps back for this year.
I really like the jump in your profile pic. And you guys are flying over that!



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    01-22-2011, 08:47 AM
Green Broke
Thanks wren those look like fun :)
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    01-22-2011, 09:48 AM
I want to point out something about the USEA horsetrials. Not all of the jumps are going to be maxed out, especially if you pick a spring HT. Course designers realize that people's horses are coming off of breaks and maybe trying their hand at a new level - so early courses tend to be easier.

If you run a USEA HT in the fall, closer to the time of championships, then they'll start to be maxed out. Course designers know if people have been playing at BN all year most are probably looking to make the jump to N soon, so courses ask more N type questions.

Different event hosts are also known for different styles of XC courses, you should be able to ask around to see which farms in your area have the "friendliest" courses. A few years ago I ran 3 novice USEA horsetrials back-to-back-to-back weekend at Rubicon, Waredaca & Seneca Valley. Rubicon's XC made me go "wow, some of these are kind of big" ended with a refusal & 10th place, Waredaca's made me go "holy crap, I don't even know if I want to go out there" (nasty weather, too) and we were eliminated on that course. The following weekend at Seneca I was totally "let me at it!" and we finished 2nd & qualified for AECs out at lamplight.

Knowing that, I would recommend Seneca over Rubicon & Rubicon over Waredaca for someone venturing out at a certain level for the first time.

This was a BN/N jump at Seneca:
Memory Card 1 148.jpg

BN stadium at Full Moon Farm:
Memory Card 2 021.jpg

It's a N bank, but it's small:

Here's another BN/N combo jump:

You can do it! Remember, all jumps look smaller from the back of a horse :)

Often times I'll have a beautiful jump over a fence I was worried about during the course walk... "and I was worried about that BECAUSE?"
Trust your horse, be confident & go for it, don't overthink things too much. And have fun!
    01-22-2011, 10:29 AM
I'm not quite sure how USEA Facilities that are used in the Spring are easier, where USEA Facilities are harder in the Fall? A USEA course is a USEA course, and to be expected to be max, and set to where it should be.

USEA Courses in my area, are definitely the heights and difficulties they should be and most courses in my area are used more than once a season, spring and fall. So an HT in the spring that is USEA sanctioned, will be the same exact course and fences used for their HT in the late summer.

Our season starts out with the HT on a course that is not USEA sanctioned. So those fences are easy peasy, simple. You sign up for BN, you're doing Pre-BN fences on the cc course. You sign up for N, even though you are going over the "N" course, you're really jumping fences that a BN rider can do. You sing up for T, same deal. Yadda yadda, etc, etc.

Then the 2nd HT is USEA and is a course that is USEA heights. Fences are maxed, terrain is not flat and described as "All courses are designed for horses with some experience". I have a friend who did that HT last season after doing the easy peasy HT first, and got eliminated because it was far to difficult for her and her horse - she was not expecting that course to be "maxed"..I said to her "well, it is a USEA Sanctioned should of be prepared".

The 3rd HT, is not USEA sanctioned - so the course is the course I posted. Easy Peasy, yawn and I can do this with my eyes closed. Then the rest of the HT's for the rest of the summer, are all USEA. Then the fall, the HT's are on non USEA sanctioned courses.

Well, now that I think about it - there is 1 facility here in area 8, that is a piece of shoit, and it is USEA sanctioned. That whole HT is a big joke, most around here do it once, and realize how big of a joke that place is and never yeah, I can see how a USEA course is not up to "standards".

But, the majority here, you sign up for a USEA course, be expected to ride regulation maxed heights. Lol, I remember one HT we did in the fall that is USEA sanctioned, my friend was looking at the BN course with her eyes bugging out of her head saying "OMG, I have to jump that?" lol.
    01-22-2011, 10:53 AM
They change the courses here, it's no fun to go ride the same course spring, summer and fall (some farms hold HTs 3x per year). I rode a USEA course at Weave-A-Dream a couple years ago, in the spring. Went back for their fall HT - totally different, the start box was where the finish flags were in the spring. That same HT, there was no water crossing in the spring at BN - which made it very easy. In the fall, lots of riders were eliminated at the water as it's a tricky creek-type crossing in the woods.

And of course, it's not like the farms only have a certain number of jumps for each level - they can mix it up, put new ones out, move them, etc.

Maybe it's just where I am, right in the heart of Area II. Waredaca, Rubicon, Redlands, Morven Park, NJ Horse Park, CDCTA, Difficult Run, Fair Hill, Olney, MD Horse Trials, SureFire, Plantation, Flora Lea, VA Horse Trials, Radnor... those are SOME USEA recognized horsetrials within 3 hours of here. The only Area II's that are too far for us are the events in North Carolina.

This is taken right out of the Omnibus:
CDCTA's spring HT in Culpeper:
Some maximum height fences, suitable for move up. Forward, galloping track for all levels.
Plantation Field's April HT:
Early season courses.
Plantation Field's May HT:
I & P courses more difficult than April. T moderate. N & BN straight forward.
Redlands Spring:
BN good for first time at this level, T/N average with experience, fair early season test. Variety of obstacles including water.
Difficult Run:
Average for horses with some experience at this level.
A USEA course is not set in stone, they change and SHOULD change. Riding over the same course more than once isn't going to really challenge you.
    01-22-2011, 11:08 AM
Green Broke
At the Kentucky Horse Park, they change the XC courses after every show. The weekend after Midsouth (totally maxed out), they had Octoberfest which was itty bitty!

It's not unusual to have easier courses at the beginning of the season and more challenging courses at the end of the season.

All in all, I agree with My Beau
    01-22-2011, 11:53 AM
Must be the area's than.

Here's my Omnibus:

May 2nd Canter Benefit - TEAM *not USEA*

This course is YAWN to the max. I could do T easy peasy.

Flat terrain, excellent footing, water at all levels. Wonderful, inviting courses to start off your TEAM year.
May 16th, Cobblestone Farms Horse Trial #1 USEA

This course is maxed to the max.

PT/OT - 2400m at 440mpm; ON-1700m at 380mpm; BN-1500m at 350mpm and max. Fence height 2'7". All courses: Average for horses with some experience. Cross country course has rolling terrain, excellent footing, water at all levels
June 6th, Battle Creek Hunt Club HT - TEAM

This is the course I posted. Yawn and easy peasy. I could to T easily without hesitation.

Moderately challenging for first times at this level. Flat terrain, large field and wooded sections. Some fences max. Water jumps for N and T only, BN water is optional

June 12-13, Derbyshire Farms Horse Trail #1 - USEA

This is the one I said was a joke. This is the only USEA HT I know, that beginners could do simply without a hitch.

Strait forward courses - mostly level ground with open view

Encore Horse Trial, USEA. June 26th-27th

This course is maxed to the max.

BN-1400m @ 350mpm. Max course. All courses: Average for horses with some experience at these levels. Terrain: Water on all courses,cross country course flat but moderately challenging with good footing in any weather
July 17th-18th, Cobblestone Farms Horse Trial

This is another course that is maxed to the max.

BN- 1500m at 350mpm and maxed. All courses: Average for horses with some experience. Cross Country course has rolling terrain, excellant footing, water at all levels
August 6-8th, Hunters Run Horse Trial

Another course, maxed. This place is called "The Little Rolex" because of the course design. The fellow who owns this place, helped build Rolex and Richland Park. He is the Area 8 TD as well.

BN- 1500m at 350mpm and maxed. All courses: Average for horses with some experience. Cross Country course has rolling terrain, excellant footing, water at all levels
August 15, Team Benefit Horse Trial - held at Hunters Run

Same as above.

August 26-29th, Richland Park - USEA

This one only hosts from N to 3*. This course does not recognize BN at all. This is the HT where many big named competators come. Darren C. Karen O'Connor, Becky Holder, etc, etc, etc, etc. This is a BIG course.

N-1900m @ 400mpm. All Courses: Average for horses with some experience. Moderate difficulty for N.
September 19th, Derbyshire Farms Horse Trail #2 - USEA

Same as above, this is the joke for a 2nd time through.

October 16th, 17th, Honey Run Team Challange Horse Trials - TEAM

Flat terrain, water at all levels
So here - it goes easy, hard, easy, hard, hard, hard, easy, easy. TEAM = easy. USEA = hard.
    01-22-2011, 02:25 PM
All the HTs I posted came out of the USEA omnibus. And they're all relatively early in the year, if you look at the late summer/fall HTs, then yes, most of them will say "average for horses with some experience at this level". Because by then, everyone has gotten out and about and courses don't need to be "easier" or "inviting".
    01-22-2011, 02:56 PM
MY Beau-- that has been my experience last year. I went Starter/Elementary depending on the facility. By the end of the summer Elementary was at the same place BN was in the spring.

HITS- I'm at the same point too. I've been schooling 2'9" regularly in the ring (snow snow go away I want to go play out on the CC course) but have only been able to school BN once in the fall. Though I'm boosted by the fact that the fox hunting fences were all 2'6" -3' and we survived that. I might only get in two schoolings on real CC courses before the first event. My plan is to go see the courses as soon as they are posted so I can decide what will be best for the first event out. The only thing you can do is school. I def recommend the unrecognized events for a debut at a level, little less pressure and cheaper too. If you are having fun at the level you are at, there's nothing wrong with staying with it for this year and moving up when you're ready not only skill wise but mentally.
    01-22-2011, 03:13 PM
Elementary - XC - Laslo's Photos | SmugMug

This is a BN fence in the spring, but come fall it's used in elementary/starter.

Elementary - XC - Laslo's Photos | SmugMug

The fence being jumped is part of a roller coaster, so BN in spring uses the lower fence, by fall it's up to the one next to it. I absolutely love this fence and am psyched to jump it again.

Beginner Novice - XC - Laslo's Photos | SmugMug

This fence is the max height if I remember correctly. All the max height fences were lone, simple approach fences. These pics are from Bucks Horse Park that runs both recognized and non recognized events.

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