Ever wonder what the pros see when they're out walking cross-country? In the Ride Between the Flags series, riders walk us through their approach to tackling different cross-country questions. International rider and trainer Deborah Rosen talks us through fence 12AB of the Galway Downs Novice cross-country course.
The Galway Downs International Event is taking place this weekend in Temecula, California, hosting international CCI2*-L, CCI3*-L, and CCI4*-L divisions, a Hylofit USEA Classic Series Training Three-Day division, and Beginner Novice through Intermediate horse trials. California-based rider and trainer Deborah Rosen explained how to ride fence 12AB of the Novice cross-country course, a log to a downbank.
“I really love this combination,” Rosen began, “because, ridden slightly differently, it’s a great question for a young horse the way it’s designed, but it can also be ridden with a bit more sophistication if you’re looking to move your horse up to Training level.”
“I like that the 'A' log is impressive so horses are not going to be invited to run over the top of it, which you would not want to have with the bank on the landing side,” she continued. “The next thing I like to see is that there is enough distance from the log to the bank for you to organize your balance and your focus, especially if you’re on a young horse.”
Riders have a long approach to the log at 12A, so Rosen said it’s important to make sure you have your canter in order for the jump. “I’m going to compress my canter to just a notch above show jumping for this, and I’m going to do it with enough time so that my horse can look and process, even if he doesn’t really understand what’s coming up. He can look and process that there are a couple of things going on and he can start to have a plan.”
“I believe the log will impress him just enough that I can press him to the log a little bit, which is another reason why I think this is a good question,” she went on. “If we can press at the log, then they’re going to land and we’re going to balance them and then we can press again at the downbank.”
Riders will land from the log at 12A and canter four strides to the downbank at 12B. Or, Rosen said, they might choose to trot to allow the horse more time to process the downbank. “There’s enough time as we land to, even on a young horse, invite them to come back to trot, which I might want to do – let him come back to trot, see the bank, and step off the bank.”
There is a Beginner Novice fence in the field of vision on the landing from the bank, and Rosen asserted the importance of using your eyes to guide your horse in the right direction. “I’m going to want to really use my eye control as we’re stepping off the bank so my horse knows we’re going to the left. Then I want to make sure that I canter away, not speedily, but so they don’t get sort of stuck in the landing at the base and land flatfooted. I’m going to close my leg and ride away from the bank in a smooth and confident way.”
Eventing at NC State was founded in 2016 and we currently have 18 undergraduate members as well as a supportive group of alumni riders. We are proud to be the first intercollegiate team in North Carolina located at the heart of the 1862 Land Grant Institution, NC State University. We have riders just beginning their eventing careers as well as those that are seasoned competitors, competing from Maiden through Training level.
Yesterday Andreas Dibowski said that he was ready for the “fun stuff” and today he had the chance to share his knowledge of both show jumping and cross-country to a large audience who attended day two of the USEA Instructors’ Certification Program (ICP) Symposium. The morning started out in the ring at Barnstaple South with three groups of riders – Beginner Novice, Training, and Preliminary, and three groups of the same levels took to the cross-country in the afternoon. While the exercises and jumps got progressively harder throughout the day, the warm-ups and themes stayed the same.
A horse’s first steps out in the cross-country field determine the foundation upon which his entire cross-country education will be laid. How can you give your horse the best chance of success? What are some of the ways you can help teach your horse about cross-country jumping?
The USEA Educational Symposium is a unique opportunity each winter for eventers to gather together to soak in knowledge. The first two days of the 2020 Symposium focus on the USEA Instructors’ Certification Program (ICP) with attendees learning how to be better, more effective instructors. German Olympian and world-renowned rider Andreas Dibowski is this year’s guest instructor and he spent the first day dedicated to dressage with one Advanced show jumping group to wrap-up the day. Dibowski taught the instructors to teach using demo riders and horses from Beginner Novice to Advanced of all ages, breeds, and sizes.