Australian Brumby Challenge ©

Weekly Training Updates


Join Michael and VBA Coolabah on their journey !


Week 1     week 2     week 3    week 4     week 5   week 6     week 7

week 8     week 9     week 10     week 11     week 12     week 13    

week 14    week 15     week 16     week 17     week 18     week 19     

week 20


Week 13

Day 85 and 86

Again, another hay run down to Victoria! Hopefully we now have enough hay to keep us going until after EQUITANA.

Day 87

I took the day off work after a long weekend of driving so I could pay Coolabah some overdue attention. We did a short morning session, working on his side pass and just general softening in his movements. I like to keep going over what he has learnt previously with moving each of his body parts separately, so that he is always thinking about what I am asking and moves with precision in response to the cues I give. He is still a little sluggish now and again, so occasionally I have been ‘upping’ the pressure to get the desired response. Coolabah is very happy to come to work in the yard and generally tries very hard. I want to keep it that way, so choosing the amount of pressure he needs is very important. The least amount of pressure the better.

I had an afternoon ride on Coolabah just working on good, smooth transitions, being focussed and straight. He is listening more and more to my body position and seat, and leg and rein cues are becoming less obvious. Coolabah is really exceeding my expectations and is shaping up to be a very comfortable ride!

Thought of the day: I don’t want to make out everything is perfect with Coolabah…. Like any young, green horse he has his moments where he thinks he knows best, but they are few and far between, and It’s how I deal with these little issues that stop them being big issues. 

Day 88

I rode Coolabah in the afternoon, but there’s not much to report as it was very much the same as yesterday. Just working on getting the paces right.

Thought of the day:  I’ve really noticed the consistency Coolabah is giving me in his ridden work. He’s also able to hold his canters for longer and more comfortably as his fitness and carriage improves.

Day 89

I stayed on the ground with Coolabah today and we did a few fun things around the property. Walked around checking fences and water troughs, and I also asked Coolabah over a few small jumps for the first time. He was a little unsure about the jump itself to start with but was very capable at jumping. He went over at a walk and a trot with lots of clearance. He did a great job, so I left it at that. Coolabah has been a bit itchy since he has been here, and we have been treating with a spray on wash and brushing but he still seems a little irritated. I got some lice and mite treatment just to be sure and put the treatment on…he was not happy about it but continued to munch down his feed, lifting his head up now and again to give me a funny look. I left him in the stable for the night to let the treatment work.

Thought of the day: I’m pretty impressed with Coolabahs jumping, maybe he is a future show jumper!

Day 90

When taking Coolabah out of the stable in the morning he had an irritated and angry look about him and really didn’t want a bar of me! I think I might of upset him a little with the treatment last night, so I put him in the paddock for the day off and to get over whatever was bothering him.

Thought of the day: Once he realises he’s not itchy anymore maybe he will like me again…

Day 91

Again, I take the spare time I have today to write up the weeks work. Lots of things planned for the upcoming weekends with Coolabah, so stay tuned!

Mick