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  1. #1
    Veteran lex2501's Avatar
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    Default An extra special report from Murphy - Borde Hill Open Novice :D

    ...Extra special because I had the super duper Michael Rogers (www.mdr-photo.co.uk) follow us for the day with a camera so prepare yourselves for a photo-tastic Borde Hill report Please note that all of the photos I have posted directly on here have been purchased specifically for use on websites so please keep your fingers away from the button!!!!

    Those of you who follow our progress will know that Murphy had a super run at Tweseldown last weekend giving me a copy book ride across the country. Sadly our dressage had been a bit wild and we had rolled a couple of poles but I felt well within my comfort zone and confidence had soared We didn't have long to wait for our next adrenaline kick as we were entered for Borde Hill ON the sunday after .. and it certainly came around very quickly!

    I decided to head down the day before to walk the course to give myself an extra hour in bed on the sunday, and also to check the ground as I am a little bit precious about what my horses run on. The exposed bits were on the firm side but the ground under the trees was fantastic and I felt happy to run on it so credit where credit is due to the Borde Hill team The course started exceptionally small, but got big and bold from about fence 5. Big and bold seemed to be the flavour of the day and I decided that it would need some attacking!
    Full set of course photos here
    They build them big at Borde Hill:

    There was one combination that left me scratching my head and that was the brush to corner at 15/16. You had the option of either the left or right hand side of the hedge and then could either roll on down to the corner on a committed 4 strides, or circle which would be time consuming, and involve a lot of hauling around. I decided that I would watch a few go through the next day, and then decide on how he was going early on the course.



    So the day dawned and Mum, Murphy and I headed down to Borde Hill. I'm afraid Super-Groom-Stan will not feature in this report as we thought it would be kinder to leave him at home - far too hot for a scruffy little doggy...
    Michael met us in the dressage and he and Mum had a good natter whilst I warmed up the beastie in beautiful sunshine. Luckily there was a good breeze up on the hill, and Murphy didn't get too lit up by the XC which was running alongside the warm up - pleasant surprise! After Murphy being super sensitive to the leg at Tweseldown I did a lot more lateral work, and also refrained from cantering in the second half of the warm up to try and prevent him popping up too readily when he should be trotting He felt ok, but was a little inconsistent in the contact so I decided to do the test in sitting trot to try and improve the contact, but perhaps at the expense of the swing and forwardness.

    Then in for the test! We were in very good company in our section with a very high profile horse who was a medallist at the young rider euro's going in just before us and doing a cracking test so I felt a little inadequate ! I played it safe during the test and kept it quiet and accurate and Murphy came up with all the answers in the right places. The medium trot didn't really happen but on the whole I was thrilled with him - enormous improvement on Tweseldown.

    I'm afraid I haven't got round to uploading the video to Youtube yet but will post the link as soon as I have

    We got back to the lorry and popped Murphy in the shade whilst I went to watch a couple through the dreaded corner combination. Most seemed to be taking the long route, and those that went straight made it look messy. I decided that if I was going to go straight I needed to be brave and attack it so I would make the decision after jumping the first half of the course.

    On for the SJ and headed over to the pretty grim warm up area. It was small, on a slope and hard - my pet hate as I ride tentatively and then never get myself in the right gear. I kicked through the negative thoughts and he jumped reasonably well. I didnt want to over do it in the heat and on the hard so I headed straight over to go in. The course was on the side of a cliff OK - massive exaggeration but there was a serious slope, and clear rounds were few and far between. This is our nemesis phase so I wasn't expecting much! He jumped the first and second fences beautifully and was really getting up in the air

    Then we turned the corner up the hill to a large oxer and I saw a long one which Murphy sensible said no to, popped in an extra stride and took the front rail - No.1 Rider error Having hit that, he then jumped out of his skin to leave the next few up! We came down to the treble going down the hill and he jumped very big in ...

    which then meant he struggled through to have the last part down - No.2 perhaps horse error. Then round up the hill to the largest oxer and I did exactly the same again - buried him in the bottom and he tried to jump his heart out but landed on the back rail - No.3 Rider error! He finished the course super careful and I was very cross with myself for letting him down as he had tried so hard! Will post video for CC when uploaded...

    Before the start of my round they had called out that my dressage score was 20! However, dont get too excited as it was in fact wrong (despite not realising the error until after I had finished my xc!) and we were on 26! Even still, I am absolutely thrilled to have knocked over 12 marks off my score in a week! Better still, the very impressive horse in front of us had 26.5 and the scores went through to mid 40's so I was 6th after dressage in a section of 31 starters - no mean feat in an open section on a horse who cant walk and suffers from terrible tension! The comments were lovely too and I was thrilled to get an 8 for my riding

    The XC was causing all sorts of problems including a hold on course whilst waiting for an ambulance to pick up a poor victim of the corner combination - not ideal for the nerves but I powered through with a PMA and hopped on raring to go and keen to get inside the time I knew I could make up some time from fences 1-3 as they were more like 100 fences so I flew out of the start box and really let him run. He met them all well within a stride. Fence 4 was the first real Novice fence so I took more time setting him up - and typically had a messy jump. Good reminder to leave him alone so bold and forwards was the name of the game after that and my goodness did my little boy deliver!! Point Two tog snapped us at one of the humongous hedges - I think the smile on my face says it all
    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb...type=3&theater
    Before I knew it we were approaching the corner combination He had been so good up to that point that I decided to risk it and just look at the result ... (massive thanks to Star for coming along to cheer us on and film it):
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AQVtF...&feature=share


    I had angled the hedge in a bit and just let him roll on down to the corner! I had seen people try to jink the line to jump more in to the corner to avoid a run out and ruin the distance in doing so. So I decided to stay straight, trust my horse and leave him alone and wow did he come up with the goods!! So so very proud of him - copy book We jumped through the water well, and the last 2 fences and we were clear - only 2 seconds outside of the time and one of the quickest of the day!!!!

    Despite 3 poles we finished 8th and accomplished our goal of the season which was to get a top 10 finish at Novice! I can't put into words how proud I am of my little horse who carries me around like an absolute saint and puts up with so many pilot errors! What a superstar, I owe this horse so much. Confidence is continuing to soar and I am so excited to be going to Barbury next at the end of the month

    And finally, the real treat - I have all these BEAUTIFUL photos to remind me of the fabulous day. Please feel free to look through the album - but excuse the beetroot look - I think I'm allowed to look that horrendous after going XC in nearly 30 degree heat I would recommend Michael to anyone who wants to capture special momentos. He is such a nice guy and became part of "Team Murphy" for the day - so supportive and friendly and you can see for yourselves how incredibly talented he is with a camera. Enjoy!!!

    http://www.mdr-photo.co.uk/alexis-ro...wn-rover-borde

    Thanks for reading everyone
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  2. #2
    Old nag
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    Default Re: An extra special report from Murphy - Borde Hill Open Novice :D

    Wow, that corner photo is one to be put in a massive frame so you can walk past it every day and grin massively! Massive well done, you two are on fire atm And 26 dressage?!

    http://www.mdr-photo.co.uk/bhalexis270512135
    I love this photo, you both look so happy.
    http://teamreggiediaries.wordpress.com
    The diary of two ex-racers as they attempt to become normal horses. Please note, normal is a relative term

  3. #3
    Veteran Ali16's Avatar
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    Default Re: An extra special report from Murphy - Borde Hill Open Novice :D

    TOLD you so! Knew you were a dressage diva really..

    Massive well done!!! Loving the pics too.. have been goggling at them on FB this morning

  4. #4
    Sport horse Harrie123's Avatar
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    Default Re: An extra special report from Murphy - Borde Hill Open Novice :D

    Well done! Great report! It looked like you had a great day, it must be a great confidence boost! Good boy!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: An extra special report from Murphy - Borde Hill Open Novice :D

    Well Done Sounds like an excellent day

  6. #6
    Veteran TableDancer's Avatar
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    Default Re: An extra special report from Murphy - Borde Hill Open Novice :D

    Lovely report and pics - placings at ON are really hard to come by so very well done!!!

  7. #7
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    Default Re: An extra special report from Murphy - Borde Hill Open Novice :D

    That's the best report I've read in ages, what a brilliant boy he was. Sounds like you are really coming together as a partnership, dare I say learning to trust your own judgement and rightly so. There will be no stopping you two now!

  8. #8
    Just backed
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    Default Re: An extra special report from Murphy - Borde Hill Open Novice :D

    BRILLIANT!!!! Well done what a fantastic result and stunning photos. I love the one over the corner you both look very happy and enjoying it :-)

  9. #9
    Just backed
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    Default Re: An extra special report from Murphy - Borde Hill Open Novice :D

    Fabulous report and some stunning photos - well done. Your report even reads as though you're oozing confidence at the moment!

  10. #10
    Old nag PorkChop's Avatar
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    Default Re: An extra special report from Murphy - Borde Hill Open Novice :D

    What a fantastic day - you looked so professional through the hedge/corner combination - you should be thrilled

    All the photo's are fantastic, super to have those memories to keep, good luck with your next run.

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