After my husband’s round, I had a bit of time to get ready for Stadium. My goal was to get on with as little time as possible for warm up. Unfortunately, the delay in Stadium had only increased and when I got on and checked in at the warm up ring, I was told I was still at least 30 minutes out. I immediately got off. I went and watched one of Kate’s kids ride in the junior BN group and then left to go sit in the shade.
Sitting in the shade, waiting for an endlessly delayed division, I had too much time to think. My primary thought? I don’t want to do this. I didn’t feel like there was any possible way the round could go well. I figured the possible outcomes – in order of likelihood – were: fall off, nearly fall off, have enough refusals to be eliminated, somehow not get eliminated but wiggle around the course alternating between frantic dashing and last minute skidding and chipping while crashing through poles in a perfect demonstration of why we shouldn’t be competing at this level. There was no version in which it went well: no possible positive outcome.
My husband soon joined me and I told him I didn’t want to do this. He tried to convince me I should try, but I wasn’t moving.The ring steward came over to tell me I was a few out, but I still didn’t get up. My husband went off to get Kate who also tried to convince me to get on. Even Megan joined in trying to get me to ride the damned horse. My time came and went and still I sat. I finally agreed to get on Levi and do some warm up. I’m pretty sure they all thought if they could just get me on, I would do a few warm up jumps, calm down, and then I’d agree to go do my round. Well, they underestimated Levi’s determination to be as annoying as possible.
We picked up a nice, forward canter and approached a 1′ crossrail. I kept my leg on, didn’t pull on his mouth or lean or do anything to mess him up, got the correct distance, and he chose to chip in. It was a 1′ crossrail. It was so small, he could have jumped it from 10 feet away; he certainly didn’t need to add from the right distance. The completely unnecessary chipping in and subsequent awkward heave up over the jump is what’s bouncing me out of the tack and what has nearly caused me to fall off at our last 2 events. If he couldn’t even jump a tiny crossrail without trying to kill me, there was no way I was doing a full BN course.
I pulled him up, walked out of the arena, and told the stewards I was withdrawing.
And that’s how we ended on a letter instead of a number.