The first jump in the course is always scary (for me at least) but once you get over that one the adrenaline starts and then it just feels like you're flying the whole time. Tis incredible. Jumping = <3333
Oh, and cross country the adrenaline starts the second you're out of the starting box and you're moving so quickly the majority of the time that you don't really have enough time to be scared :]
Keep in mind too that these riders didn't go from jumping 2"6 to 5"6 in a day! It takes YEEEEEARS of jumping gradually higher and higher to get to this level. Plus one of the harder things about getting to this level is finding a horse that is able to do that height. I'd bet that they've jumped A LOT of 4'6ish jumps before they found one competitive enough to go higher. Plus, most jumpers are concerned more about the approach to the jump rather then the jump itself.
Although, I did walk a grand prix course the other day and yikes! Those jumps ARE big!
OMG!!! Holy COW!! Scary!! I think that is a selfish thing to put your horse through for your glory. I enjoy watching the jumping but much over 4 feet is crazy if you ask me. Sorry, just my 2 cents.. Oh, and no I don't jump only for fun or if I have to, so my opinion isn't realy worth much, but those pictures took my breath away.
I'm sure it didn't happen overnight, but....still leaves me thinking, "What the heck?". I get the heights, but what about the severe consequences if they stumble before that jump and land in that brick pit?? Why would you expose you and your beautiful animal to such a potentially deadly accident???
These animals are bred to do what they do. Most riders you see compeating, aren't on their own horses. They are on clients horses who are paying them to ride them.
Cycle of a sport. Name, money, breeding rights. Carreer's.
Easy to judge and point finger, when you aren't at those levels. Those animals are highly well taken care of, with the best treatments and management. These horses are their bread and butter, not disposable.
Again, easy to point fingers when you aren't in that circle to see for yourself and experience for yourself.