Brand Ambassador Blog - Lizzie Robinson - June 2018
Ponies & Prosecco
Wowser a lot has happened in a month. Welcome to our second blog. This month we have attended a jumping clinic with Janine Lamy. This was the day of the royal wedding. A day for a harmonious partnership, and Harry and Megan to tie the knot. We felt a lot less rusty and were more in sync with each other. My cross country session had reinstalled self confidence and helped me to find my jumping rhythm again.
I was keen to repeat this experience. A lot of confidence building is repetition. So a week later I joined my sister Laura for another cross country training session.
I rode Wigs whilst she rode her Novice horse Alf. Whilst she made the biggest combinations on the course look like child's play I picked my way around the course keen to have a good positive day out. We jumped more fences then ever but stayed within our comfort zone so that it remained a confidence building exercise. I was also aware that there was no one on the ground to scrape either of us up if we did have a whoopsie moment.
We also completed our second elementary test this year together, Elementary 40.
This was definitely our hardest test to date (it was challenging enough just reading the test let alone riding it) and I was over the moon to score 67.09% . This was with a BD judge as well and the perfect confidence boost before the dressage master’s league.
If I am honest with myself I probably did not leave enough time to prepare for the Dressage Master's League Semi Final at Hickstead and as a result I piled the pressure on myself. In the week leading up to the DML I had a lesson with my instructor Tania. In the lesson I found that we were over bending in canter to the inside on right rein, so that Wigs was going around the school in a banana shape and falling out through the shoulder. We practiced a lot of canter work off the track and worked on straightening him by asking for a bit of counter bend. I then repeated these exercises in our Thursday night schooling session.
It seems I had been too successful in correcting the problem as when I received my sheet for my Prelim DML class. I had scored mostly sevens apart from my right canter work which had been marked down for being bent to the outside! We still scored 65.09%. Still a good score but those lost canter marks were expensive.
In our Novice DML class we achieved a score of 64.91%. I had been really pleased with the test and came out smiling. We were among very good company in the class and had been drawn first to go. When I received my sheet I was thrilled to see that we had received 7's for our medium trot and counter canter work from both judges. These are probably the hardest movements in the test, but we had lost marks for smaller errors that are much easier to correct. I felt hopeful as I have sometimes felt that I am out of my league at Novice level.
Following this I met up with fellow blogger Katie Lawrence of Deciphering Dressage. She was kind enough to give us a fab lesson and we had a very helpful chat on mindset. Katie encouraged me to not worry about scores or who else was in the class but to set goals within my control, e.g. getting a nice photo, remembering the test, etc.
I came away from our meeting feeling so positive and like a weight had been lifted. It was also nice to finally meet someone in person who I have talked to and asked advice off online for quite some time.
With my new positive attitude, I attended a competition yesterday and felt so much more relaxed. I even allowed myself a few cheeky proseccos the night before. I entered two Novice tests. Both tests felt so fluent and Wigs felt so active, keen and obedient. He could not have done any more for me. I had already said to my dad that what ever the scores, I was pleased with how the tests had gone. To my amazement when I looked at the scoreboard we had achieved 71.04% in our first class and a win, then 68.06% in our second class landing us in third position. I never thought I would achieve 70% at Novice and the best part was I scored six eights in my first test!
June has definitely been a fab month and now we have a X Country Clinic with Ben Hobday to look forward to in July.
Lizzie and Wigs
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Keywords: all the gear, bbc, blogging, brand ambassadors, british dressage, crosscountry, dressage, equestrian, equestrian lifestyle, equestrian photographer, equine photographer, eventer, eventing, hickstead, horse photographer, horses, photographer, ponies & prosecco, pony & pup photography, portrait photography, showjumping, training
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