Warm Up Apocalypse

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Not unlike the Zombie Apocalypse

Warm Up Apocalypse is very much the END for an eventer.

Something about those weird, naked looking warm up jumps has always blown my mind.

A rider who didn’t survive last time!!

Back to those damn warm up jumps.

They break this completely stupid rule I grew up with where we never (and I mean NEVER) were allowed to jump things without ground lines, or that were square. So cantering down to a square oxer 3’6″ in the air with no ground line just sets every nerve in my body screaming that it’s against the rules.

I’ve smashed down entire warm up jumps several times now, and it has never ended well for me.

In my “return to eventing” at the first 2 RECOGNIZED Horse Trials I destroyed a warm up jump, and then proceeded to get eliminated.

At the first show, after demolishing the warm up oxer I had an RF at the very first jump on course.


That would be a Rider Fall for any non-eventers reading this. 

At the second show, after demolishing the warm up vertical I got eliminated at the second jump in stadium. My only consolation was that I had gone over ONE more jump than I had at the first show.

It was Warm Up Apocalypse. Those weird looking warm up jumps, just freaked me out.
I decided the only way to get over this was to put “warm ups” all over my property. I spent a week in my shop building bare bones stadium fences, and then put those 3 DAMN JUMPS all over my property.

I put them in my arena.

  I put them in a field.

I put them on a hill side. I was trying to replicate all the show situations I had been faced with. I put them next to lines of plastic flagged ropes.

I even made an entire “course” of 8 jumps out of nothing but “warm up” fences.

The saturation worked and the warm up choke dissipated.

Fast forward 2 years, and here I was competing in my very first Preliminary level Horse Trial and I had just smashed the warm up vertical to the ground. Standards and all……..

An Olympian was picking up the jump parts which had been knocked everywhere!!

I was horrified. Warm up Apocalypse had struck again.

Oh wait, that’s Zombie Apocalypse….

But I didn’t have time to freak out, I was due to start XC in a few minutes,

He turned to me and said, “This is NOT stadium!!”

Every time I had smashed a warm up fence down and then crashed and burned it was in stadium.
Something about him saying this was NOT stadium kicked my brain into gear.

I was completely stuck to sat on my sticky saddle, put my legs on my horse and jumped the next jump beautifully.

And we never looked back.

10 minutes later I was crossing the finish line, all clear and under time after my first Prelim cross country ride.

I had my brief after action review with my coach. I thanked him. He went off to coach someone else, and I cried all the way back to the barn.

 It was hard explaining to the people walking by that my ride was perfect (and yes, I was crying because of it.)

But Lucinda cried when she won Rolex…….

so I decided it was ok!

It has been such a long journey. Actually finishing my first attempt at Prelim in one piece, and in the ribbons was just incredible.

When I arrived at my stall this was sitting on my stall door.

Bought for me by a fan of my blog who sleuthed out who Bad Eventer is in real life.
(Thanks Again!!)

Bad Eventer went Prelim, finished on her dressage score, and even went home with a ribbon.

Can you believe it??!!

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