September 28 & 29 - Captain Arias competes at Turning Point Horse Trials
Captain Arias is a handsome five year old dark bay Thoroughbred gelding, who raced up until a year ago. Since leaving the track, Captain is being re-schooled for Eventing. Turning Point Horse Trials at Bouckaert Farm in Chatsworth, Georgia was his first recognized competition, where he completed all three phases in the Novice Horse division. Captain Arias is Elizabeth Wood's personal horse.
The Dressage test was steady, with transitions,canter work, and diagonals scoring in the 7's. His final score was 43%, which we consider to be a very good score for his first time out. He had a workmanlike attitude and he tried very hard not to be distracted by the person riding a 4-wheeler on the short side of the arena at A.
The next phase was Stadium, which was a challenging course that required the rider to have their 'eyes-up', looking for a straight and balanced approach. The fences were maximum height and width, and Captain gave it his best, being very careful to keep his knees up and tight. He was responsive to the leg and lengthen and shortened his stride, while keeping a steady pace. He was one of the few horses in his division that finished with a clear round.
Captain was one of the few horses in his division that finished with a clear round.
The final phase was Cross Country, with 15 maximum size fences which were built throughout some steep hills and rain-soaked terrain. The fences consisted of heavy oxers, bright orange benches and blue tables, ramps, water, ditch, and natural brush.
Riding out of the starter's box was balanced and confident, as Captain went immediately into a 350 mpm gallop. The first fence was an attractive oxer, that landed on a right turn towards an orange bench.
The first fence was an attractive oxer.
The approach to the bench was forward, but it was something that Captain had never seen before and he took a good look at it. He was willing to go over it by stepping on it and banking off, but rather than risking a negative experience,another allowed him to sail over beautifully.
Fence 3, was a log ramp fence set on the side of a steep hill, where he landed galloping down hill, across a lane to fence 4 that was a half ring ramp, into a wooded area towards a large blue coop. He wanted to look at the fence, but he confidently quickened his pace and was willing to go over.
Fences 6 and 7 were placed on the side of a hill, where rider's jump an oxer, take a stride and turn a sharp right over a brush oxer that traveled downhill to a ditch. By this time, Captain to picked up the pace to around 450 mpm, and he moved on sure footed and balanced. This part of the course was a long gallop stretch. Captain pricked up his ears when he saw the horse. He leaned forward, got very serious and galloped past the rider who had to yield.
Captain flew over fence 9, a big black oxer table, where on landing he did a 'show-jumper rollback' turn and quickly galloped on. The shortest route on this part of the course to gallop next to the road where the Technical Delegate (TD) was sitting on a John Deere tractor. Again, Captain showed what an incredible horse he is. The TD of the show wasn't aware of how quickly Captain was approaching and started the tractor and began driving down the lane. Captain was galloping neck and neck with the tractor. Soon he blew past the tractor, just as the TD startled and realized he were there!
The next fence was a cabin fence, and on through some very sticky footing to an 'in-and-out', #13 a big red table fence, then down to the water.
The final fence was a white ramp with a big medallion in the middle. Five strides out Captain picked up his head and began to shorten his strides. He began to put the breaks on, looking right at the medallion. Unfortunately, he had a stop, but it wasn't because Captain was scared, or being dirty. His response to the fence was a horse who just wasn't sure of what he was looking at, and that is something easily solved by more schooling. After clearing the last fence, he breezed through the finish line and completed the event with a score of 78 penalties in 9th place out of a field of 16 horses.
Kelly Cook (Rowdy's new mom) groomed for Captain. Linda Ross provided support for both horse, rider and owner with coffee and chocolates.
Everyone was pleased with how the weekend went, but Captain was the happiest of all. He was quite pleased with himself as we read his body language back at the shed row. His eyes were bright and calm, head held high with his ears up. The look on his face was of complete contentment. He knew he did a good job. Captain's next event is planned for Pine Top Horse Trials in Thomson, Georgia in November.
Dean Graham came to take photos and give last minute advice.
Captain poses for Dean and looks to his mom for approval at the end of his dressage test.
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Horses for sale. Horses for sale. Horses for sale. Horses for sale. Thoroughbreds
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