Trainer enlisted my help as a jump judge for Sunday. The teams scrambled to make four teams of five kids (one from each country) and got a chance to ride their new horses for one hour on Saturday. I’m amazed at these riders. Brand new to them horses and they only had an hour to get acquainted.
Sunday was the first competitive event as each team geared up for dressage followed by a derby type round with four stadium fences followed immediately by eleven cross country jumps. The riders from Hong Kong had never been cross country before. They only ever ride in an arena. So different than here in the US and I was sad I didn’t get a chance to talk to them about how they board and care for their horses.
I was put in charge of the up bank at 13 and the palisade at 14 and thankfully all riders were clear through both. In fact pretty much all riders had clear rounds with only two falls on course and two refusals out of 20 runs. Pretty impressive for only just meeting their horse the day before!
I was so glad I got another chance to participate and help out. Everyone was so gracious about getting to ride and compete someone else’s horse and they all seemed to have a good time.
The rest of the week will be jammed with fun, local activities for the riders including a trip to an amusement park, kayaking and zip lining on the Green River, Tryon Horse Country tour, and a fun night at the Tryon International Equestrian Center (home of the AECs last year and WEG in 2018) until their last weekend which will host the Kangaroo Cup, a 3′ jumper show. I am hoping to make it to the jumper show as well and hope they all have a great week.