Playing With The Big Boys

Playing With The Big Boys

The season is nearly here! Most people have made their first entry (or are at least planning it) and social media is full of people jump training.

Waiting for the fences to be altered

Siren’s preparation was going well, we went showjumping in January and entered the 1m10 and 1m20. We hadn’t done an awful lot of jumping at home so decided to start it small and get a confident few rounds. The 1m10 was run as two phase. I assured myself that we weren’t there to gallop round in the jump off but my competitive spirit came out as I went over the final fence before the jump off. For a 17.1hh (and a bit) he is very nimble and he managed a double clear to come 6th.

In the 1m20 he was again very good, just to roll the last pole. My dad loves Siren and he always has a ‘word’ with him before I head off to whichever phase it might be, whether it’s to tell him to dance well, run fast or leave the poles up. Unbeknown to me Dad had told Siren to knock the last pole down so we could go home…Thanks Dad!
After that we have been going down for a few dressage lessons. We are really starting to grasp the idea, but as Andrew told me we still have a horse with ‘average’ paces and a horse that loves a 4 beat canter…. but if we can train him correctly hopefully we will see some improvement in our scores.

Hot and steamy after a gallop

Last weekend we went showjumping again, this time entering the 1m20 with the view to do a 1.25 after. In the warm up he felt ok, a bit backwards but ok. The time came to go in and well…. it was awful. He was spooking, behind my leg, knocking poles (and when a shire hits a pole it makes a fair bang, even if it doesn’t fall!). After a few kicks in his gut and a few smacks he finished on 8 faults. But it was bad….awful and embarrassing! He somehow got 2 strides in the single strides triple. I decided to go in again HC/non competitive to try again, but he was the same so I retired and brought him home. It’s not like him to be like that and he didn’t feel himself.

True happy hacker

So me being me starts thinking what’s up, is it his ulcers? Is he ill? Has he got a bad back? Who knows!!

For a while, after discussion with TopSpec, we have been adding in a bit more energy feed. He was fed UlcerKind cubes which have been amazing for him, but he needs a bit more energy. A few weeks ago we decided to add some Performance Cubes to see if he could cope with that, but it didn’t give him a lot more. So after further discussion with TopSpec and our vet we have decided to put him on a higher starch diet, and then scope him in a few weeks.

Tucking into tea

He’s working very hard at the moment so we are hoping this will pick him up a bit and still remain comfortable. A big thank you to Christine at Aireworth Vets and TopSpec for helping us so much recently ?

When he was diagnosed with ulcers he recently had had surgery on his sinus’s and had been on a lot of ‘Bute’. It will be interesting to see what’s going on in a few weeks.

We hate mud

So after an easy week to try and sort him out, had a jump in the arena at home today and he felt fab. We have a lesson with a pure showjumper and a dressage lesson this week, then hopefully squeeze in some XC schooling at Somerford, before he is scoped again the week after. We are going to see Jo at the National Saddle Centre to have our tack checked this month Busy busy!!

Much love,
Charlotte and Si xxx

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