Let’s face it, it happens to all of us. Those head-in-hands moments at a competition when you want the ground to swallow you up. When you embarrass yourself in front of a huge crowd (or the two men and a dog at your local show). When you let your horse down. When you drive to the other end of the country and get eliminated…
Here are 13 ridiculous mistakes all competition riders have made at some stage in their careers…
1. Gone the wrong way in a dressage test.
2. Gone the wrong way in a dressage test several times and been eliminated. Even more embarrassing if the test is being called…
3. Jumped the wrong showjumping course or the wrong fence in the jumping phase of a working hunter class and been eliminated.
4. Missed out a cross-country fence. And been eliminated (spot the re-occuring theme here?).
5. Trotted into line after being pulled in in a showing class and then been told the steward was actually pointing to the girl behind you…
6. Got confused about the optimum time across country and chased your poor horse home, only to discover you have too-fast time-faults. Anyone else translated 5min 43sec turn into 4min 53sec?
7. Started before the bell in the showjumping and been eliminated. .
8. Done the wrong set show — who knew “trot away, canter in the corner” could be so hard to follow?
9. Left your horse’s boots on when you entered the dressage arena and been eliminated.
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10. Carried a whip into the eventing dressage arena and been eliminated.
11. Got in the way of a top professional rider finishing their show, causing them to slam on the brakes.
12. Caused someone to make an emergency stop/handbrake turn in the warm-up.
13. Got confused about long routes and missed out an element of a combination fence. Yet again, a fast route to the big E.
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