PPC CT Crossrails

It's really funny to me to call booping around this course of speed bumps "jumping." Still, I suppose it is! The local Pony Club sponsored this show, and they really did a lovely job making the course pretty. There was even one jump designed to look like a well, which I thought was awesome. The height on these wasn't challenging, but they looked professional enough to be great schooling.
A well! So scary...
Bast has never "jumped" a course. However, he's very maneuverable. I had no doubts we could "get around" the course. I had two rounds allotted, and was also the last rider of the day. The volunteers were breaking down the show, and let me know I could really school all I wanted in the ring. They were so generous and lovely!

We headed in the ring and went straight for the well jump. I knew that was going to be the spookiest question, and I was not wrong. Several strides out, Bast started peeking at the decorations uncertainly. I closed my legs, letting him know the only answer was forward but he could take his time. We slowly made our way up to the tiny X, clobbering it a little on the way over. Then, we made a turn to a more plain fence (the last one on course) and hopped right over.
Perfect boy.
With that bit of positive experience, we started our first round. I was resolved to trot most of the course. Bast has a tendency to get a bit carried away and flat in the canter, so I wanted him to have a good experience and approach for his first time. We trotted the first fence without a problem and turned to the well fence, easily making the sweeping left turn. Then we continued around to jump the fence on the outside track.

After these first few jumps, Bast was trying to canter away from the fences in an unbalanced fashion. I was bringing him back each time to the trot, and about halfway through the course, he started to understand the idea. Once we were over fence 4, he was either trotting the fences like raised cavaletti or coming back right after going over the fence in a glorified canter depart.
Glorified cavaletti.
We finished the first course without incident, and I was glad to have the chance to school another round. I could feel that Bast was starting to understand the concept, and one more round would be really helpful to teach him the point of the exercise.
Teaching half halts also apply on course.
For the second round, I picked up a canter intending to canter the whole thing in balance. The first two fences went well (unfortunately not captured on the below video). The third and fourth were also lovely and smooth. The fifth we biffed the striding to, but he gamely stumbled through in a trot step.
Seriously. I am so proud.
His confidence levels were rising throughout the course, until Bast thought he was invincible, got in too close to a fence, and took it out with his lazy hind legs. That startled him good, and I took time after to make sure he was settled before continuing.

The next fence he absolutely hiked his hind legs up over. But immediately ended up too flat for the next fence in the line, and took it out with the hind legs again.
However, he nicely came back after his second knock and jumped the last fence delightfully. Video below, or click here.
We ended on such a good note. I'm thrilled with him, but to be honest I think he's more thrilled with himself. Making it through both courses successfully definitely boosted his confidence, and he nearly swaggered out of the ring.
He definitely believes himself to be the undisputed king of crossrails. Unfortunately for him, I don't think he realizes it gets harder than this and that he's actually expected to continue to put his legs up. Ah well. Maybe he'll get there someday!
Pictured: Future Superstar


  1. 10/10 would jump this pone. I like him so much.

  2. Sooo, in other words... he wants to be an eventer.

  3. Such a good boy! Well done!

  4. so cute and such a swaggerchunk! Love this. You need to event him :)

  5. Omg he is the cutest! And those are the kinda jumps I am talking about! ;)

  6. He's like "LOOK WHAT I DID MA!!!" so cute

  7. So cute!!

    You guys look great

  8. He's freaking adorable. I love his happy face after!

  9. And you did it all in dressage tack lol

  10. woo hoo! How fun for you guys! He looks so game!

  11. Aw, this is adorable! I would imagine any dressage horse who has been worked over basic ground poles would do really well schooling a "course" like this. I wish they had more options like this locally. Super cute photos <3


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