Australian Brumby Challenge ©

Week 12

Day 78

Coolabah had today off while I travelled down to Victoria to get more hay. While in Victoria I got to meet Elizabeth Grant, who is also in this year’s Australian Brumby Challenge training VBA Avena in the yearling category. What a great job she is doing! I wish I was training horses at 14, and with that much patience and commitment. If you haven’t already checked out her Facebook page, then please do and follow her progress (Australian Brumby Challenge Yearling Trainer – Elizabeth Grant).

Thought of the day: If it wasn’t for the Grant family sourcing some hay for me, then my hay shed would be empty! Big thanks to Joanne, Paul, Elizabeth, Emily and Nathan. Everyone at Mick Masons Horses really appreciates your help.

Day 79

I was feeling pretty good today, it had rained a little while I was away, and the hay shed full! Coolabah and I had the day to learn some new things, so we started with a morning session. I worked on side pass for half an hour or so. When I work on something new, I don’t constantly ask for the new thing I am teaching. I go backwards and forwards from things he is already good at. This is a better way for horses to learn rather than just flooding them with information, which can cause a horse to shut down. I want Coolabah to constantly try and stay focused for me, and set him up with a good, happy work ethic.

We also had a session in the afternoon, which was a ridden session. Coolabah was fluent in his movement and gave sharp responses to everything I asked- as we went over everything that he had already learned under saddle. Walk to trot, fast trot, and back again to a halt. He was nice and loosened up and moving his feet very freely. All the work I had put into getting smooth canter transitions while free lunging him, made the next part of his ridden work effortless. We had our first canter under saddle (yeah I know, I have left it a long time but it’s a luxury having 150 days to start and train a horse, and I am going to use the time to make things as easy as possible!). To go from the trot to canter all it took was for me to make a ‘squeak’ noise and off we went. He was a little quick to start but slowed down after the first half circle. He picked up the correct lead straight away and went back to trot and walk when asked. I did it both ways a few times and stopped for the day.

Thought of the day: I am very happy with how Coolabah continues to give his all every time we step in the yard, out in the paddock or go on a trail.

Day 80

Today Coolabah had his first proper float trip along with Sav, Kristen’s thoroughbred. Coolabah loaded, travelled and unloaded at Braidwood Veterinary Surgery to get his teeth done. Greg was very impressed at Coolabahs temperament and gave all the sharps on his teeth a file down, and even popped a couple of teeth out that were very loose and ready to come out. Over all, Coolabah is in very good shape, but still has quite a few teeth to come through. He loaded back on to the float easily and we travelled home.

Thought of the day: Braidwood Veterinary Surgery are sponsoring Coolabah through his transition from wild to wonderful. The knowledge Greg and his team have, is second to none. Thanks Greg, Nicola and the team for your amazing support.

Day 81

Coolabah had the day off after his first dental yesterday.

Day 82 and 83

I won’t go into too much detail here as today was very similar to day 79. We worked on Coolabahs canter transition and straightness. Every day we work, he gets better and better, and stronger and stronger. We have spent weeks in preparation to make sure Coolabah’s fitness and confidence is at a level where he can carry me properly. We also went out in the paddock and around the property, preparing him, and exposing him to things that might worry him at his next outing. 

 Thought of the day: It is a big ask to have a wild horse trained and exposed enough to cope with an atmosphere like EQUITANA. So, plenty more outings planned in the very near future.

Day 83

Again, todays spare time is used to write this write up, while Coolabah enjoys a day down at the creek where the grass has a tinge of green, and lots of obstacles to manoeuvre around to keep him busy.

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