Cade Cohalan & Ingrid Gould enjoying the water obstacle
CROSS COUNTRY CLINIC AT KYNETON
During the last school holidays,17 riders from Bealiba Pony Club travelled to the Kyneton Pony Club grounds where they were met well known Eventing instructor Debbie Browell.
The Kyneton pony club has approximately 50 members and they are extremely fortunate to have good grounds which offer a challenging cross-country course for their riders. Debbie mounted on one of her young eventers took riders currently competing or hoping to upgrade to grades 1, 2 & 3 around the course. Riders viewed each jump, discussed the approach and difficulties that could arise before presenting their horses to it. Debbie offered words of encouragement and advice to riders on their approach and position. A jump called “The Coffin” gave the most problems, the horses were asked to negotiate a downhill jump then jump a ditch and ride forward to negotiate an up hill jump. If horses felt their riders hesitate they took the opportunity to duck out. With determination and good riding all riders were able to successfully negotiate the jump.
A series of tyres placed closely together created a bounce, horses had to be ridden strongly into this jump. Water jumps often create a problem with horses with many of them not willing to get their feet wet. Grade 5 riders are not required to negotiate a water jump, grade 4 riders are required to walk through it, grade 3 riders jump into it as well as grades 2 & 1 riders which are required to negotiate a jump into water as well as jumping out of it.
The grades 5 & 4 riders were then taken around the course, having loads of fun riding up hill and down drops. A collection of wooden carved mushrooms created a challenging obstacle while the sharks teeth and water jumps proved to be the favourites.
After lunch all riders were taken to the start of the course, Debbie positioned herself in the centre of the course while parents manned each jump enabling riders to ride the full course at their respective grades.
The training day was a huge success with all riders keen to do something similar in the near future. The opportunity of visiting clubs with top class facilities will be an area that the club will continue to pursue in the future. The club has a number of riders moving into higher levels of competition so it is extremely important that they are aware of the correct techniques to keep themselves and their horses safe. This will continue to be done under the watchful eye of an experienced instructor.