On Sunday, 17th, Barik competed in his first 64km at the Forest of Dean. It was an early start and we were one of the first out on course. Baz was very keen to get going once out, especially after two riders caught us up and over took. The first loop was 32km with our crew meeting us at designated spots. A new member joined my crew and currently is in training called Hannah. Barik remained at a consistant pace the entire loop and was still very keen when coming into the vet gate. Due to recently laid stones we walked in which helped to lower his pulse. He flew through vetting and we were back out on course. Baz went out onto his second loop feeling very fresh and it was hard to believe he'd already done 32km. By this time it was the heat of the day but Baz still performed well. During this ride his extended trot came through and he did the majority of the ride at this pace. The second loop was the same as the first so Baz knew his way round. When almost at the venue Baz began to neigh as he could hear the other horses and was not very chilled out at all. So all crew hands were needed to cool him off and try and chill him out. However, on walking round with Hannah part of his combination broke and off Barik went. Consider he had just done his first 64km he still managed to do a lap of the venue at a fast canter and evaded being caught for a bit. After his little lap of honour it was time to go to final vetting. I felt worried due to the fact he didn't appear to be very calm and I was sure he would fail on pulse. However, his pulse was at 46 and he passed the vetting! He was awarded with his best grade so far of 2 and completed the distance at a speed of
Following Govilon Baz and I went to Tresham to complete his first 50km. Last year I had competed at this ride on Duette and only did the 40km, due to downgrading as the ground was soo wet. This year however the ground conditions were good so we did not have to downgrade. It was an early start to the day with leaving home at half 6 in the morning to be able to arrive at the venue for our half 8 vetting. Baz was very hyper at the vetting, watching everything which was going on around him, which left him with a high pulse to start with. Once out on course Baz did everything asked and we had a very nice relaxed ride. From the schooling at home Baz is now learning to take a lighter contact and is proceeding to listen to me more. At this ride I was able to ride round with a loose contact and he didn't take too much of a hold in canter. Baz seemed to really enjoy this ride with his ears pricked the entire distance and very much enjoying being out and about in different surroundings. Once back at the venue, Baz was cooled down but still was not relaxing. He is very much a horse which likes to watch everything and see what everyone else is doing. Baz finished on a pulse of 53 at a speed of 12.7kph so we gained a grade 4. I don't mind about grades and I know his pulse will improve over time with more experience. I am very pleased with how he went on his first 50km and couldn't be happier
Barik and I attended the Govilon ride to compete in the 27km pleasure ride. It provided good hill training across the welsh hills which we don't have in Hereford. The ride provided much off road riding along mountain tracks which climbed up steeply as well as perfect cantering along the top of the mountain. However, unfortunately Baz and I only made it half way. Somewhere on route down one of the thick muddy tracks Baz lost a shoe so we retired on course. Up to this point Baz had put a lot of effort into climbing the steep tracks so the ride was not all wasted. Although whilst we waited to be picked up by crew Baz proceeded to go round me in circles watching the rest of the riders disappear off into the distance and seemed to not understand the necessity to have to stop. Its nice to see he still wants to compete even though he has only 3 shoes. Baz returned home and had his shoe replaced the following day. He was not lame a
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