The second half of 2015 hasn’t exactly been what I’d hoped in terms of horse shows or even riding in general with Miles. In fact, I’ve jumped one time since our last horse show, where Miles bucked me off over a crossrail. Actually, now that I think about it, the last two times I’ve jumped my own horse I’ve fallen off, which is… not awesome. Sufficed to say, I’ve had a lot of setbacks and as a consequence, I’ve done a lot of soul-searching. While I’ve been doing that, and working on gaining confidence with the best little OTTB mare I’ve ever known, Miles has been in bootcamp.
I’m extremely lucky to have an experienced, knowledgeable Trainer, as well as a very talented and ambitious best friend. Together, the three of us have been working toward regaining the Miles I know and love. You know, the amateur-friendly gelding who can take a joke. Despite some more time off here and there for various reasons, I’ve been quite successful in gaining Miles’s respect and re-installing the “go” button on the flat. +1 for Team Tracy! However, I have to admit that the prospect of falling off again doesn’t excite me, so I’ve decided to leave the heavy lifting to more experience and qualified people. Read: Trainer and my BFF/working student.
Ever since the end of September, Miles has been in jumping bootcamp, with my BFF (N) in the irons. In total, they’ve probably taken about four lessons due to scheduling and such, and I have to admit that at first, it was ugly. Miles tried to pull the same crap on N that he does with me. He’d jump the jump, land and start crow-hopping/bucking. But N is much stickier than I am, and put a stop to that pretty quickly. And each lesson since, Miles has improved.
He’s not perfect, and he still has some naughty moments (like yesterday when he played in the middle of a line), but all in all I think bootcamp is working. The plan is for Miles to remain in bootcamp until further notice, so that he has time to process the training and remember his job. Everyone (myself included) is very positive about the Return of the Original Miles, and I’m happy as long as he continues to improve. We’ve come a long way already and I’m going to keep working hard to get us back to where we need to be.