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The D1/D2 Horse Rally

Based on a real story

Jennifer E.
Mrs. Abernethy
The D1/D2 Horse Rally
Based on a real story

By:

Jennifer E.
My Book is
Dedicated
To:

My Horse—KoKo
Chapter 1 - Introduction

It takes a lot of time to prepare for a rally.


My neighbor and I practiced every day for this
rally. You have to be able to make your horse
walk, trot, canter, and jump. I have to memorize
a dressage test. In a dressage test you have to
trot, walk, and canter in certain places. Dressage
shows a horse’s obedience to the rider’s
commands. The dressage arena is twenty meters
by forty meters with letters around the outside.
The rider memorizes a dressage test and is
judged on how well the horse listens to the rider.

I have to keep my horse in shape for cross-


country. Cross-country means that you have to
go a long distance in the woods with lots of
jumps. The jumps vary in height by what level
you are in. The levels are D1, D2, D3, C1, C2,
C3, B, and A (A being the highest level.)

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I am a D2. I jump jumps that are waist high.
I also have to do a stadium course. It consists of
ten to twelve stadium jumps. They must be
jumped in the correct order, so I have to
memorize the jump course beforehand. If I
jump the wrong jump, I will be eliminated from
this phase of the rally.

To practice, Kelly and I set up jumps and


practice jumping at different heights. We
practice having our horse walk, trot, canter, and
walk backwards. We riders have to put a lot of
time in, giving our horses commands like turn,
walk sideways, slow down, go faster, and stop.
Your position is very important to the horse.
Some horses only listen when the rider is in
proper position.

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Chapter 2 - Preparation for Rally
I must thoroughly clean my tack. The
saddle and bridle must be taken apart
completely. The bit and stirrup irons must be
soaked, cleaned, and shined. If Dad doesn’t see,
we sometimes run them through the dishwasher!
All the leather is first scrubbed with saddle soap
to remove the dirt. Next, it is conditioned, then
oiled with neatsfoot oil, and finally buffed with a
clean cloth.

My horse must be clean. All bot eggs must


be removed. His hooves must be neatly
trimmed. Usually I give my horse a bath-not in
a bathtub. I use a hose. The mane must be
trimmed neatly. My brush box and brushes must
be cleaned. All items must be labeled with your
name, pony club, and competitor number.

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Chapter 3-The Rally
It’s four o’clock in the morning. We’re
waking up. I’m so tired, as I quickly get
dressed. Down to the barn I go to feed my pony.
My Dad is checking the trailer and truck lights
to be sure everything is working. Dad and Mom
are busy loading all my equipment into the back
of the truck. We usually take our own water,
because sometimes ponies don’t drink other
water. We bring lots of hay along with the horse
first aid kit, human first aid kit, tool kit, tack
cleaning kit, water buckets, plus many other
items that are listed in the rule book.

Here I come with KoKo in his halter with


lead rope. He’s nice and clean and excited about
going somewhere in the trailer. KoKo leads
easily onto the trailer. I tie him using a quick
release knot. We go to pick up Kelly and her
horse, Taffy. Taffy and KoKo are glad to see
each other. We’re off to the rally.

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We arrive around six o’clock am. The
grounds have just opened. We try to find the
other two members of our four-person team. We
know that their trailer is blue and their truck is
red. There they are! We introduce ourselves
and begin to set up our tack trailer. Our trailer is
being used to tie the horses to. We get out our
hay bags and water buckets.

When everything is ready, we unload our


horses and tie them to the trailer. Kelly and I are
going to pick up our packet at the registration
table. We put on our pinnies, and we must wear
them the entire day. My number is forty-one
and Kelly’s is forty-two. The other two girls are
Erin and Christine from another pony club.

We look up our formal inspection and ride


times and begin getting ready. We walk the
cross-country course with our instructor and
stable manager using the map in our packet. We
talk about which jumps look the hardest and
what approach we’ll take.
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It’s time to start grooming our horses. The
stadium phase is the first event. I am walking
KoKo to the arena. I am getting in line for my
formal inspection. The judge inspects my pony.
Next she inspects me. She unbuckles my helmet
and checks the label. Now she puts my helmet
back on and buckles it. Ouch! She pinched me!

After ten minutes of warm up, it’s my turn to


do the stadium course. Do I remember the
course? There’s #1, #2, #3, #4. There’s jump
#12. I got the course. KoKo is ready to rumble!
Here comes #1. I’m scared! I made it! Here
comes #2, #3, #4. Oh no #5 is taller than waist
high. KoKo is cantering. His ears are perked
up. He is ready to jump. Whew, we sailed over
the jump. KoKo sailed over jumps six through
eleven. I am looking for #12. The leaves are
falling, the air is making my eyes water. There
is the jump. Oh no, I’m scared. I can’t make it.
It is too high. Ahhhh! “You made it,” Kelly
screamed.
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We’re ready for dressage. We enter the
dressage ring at a trot and go toward the judge.
We halt and salute. When the judge salutes back
we continue. Yes, we did it. I remembered all
the parts of the test and KoKo listened great.
The next phase is cross-country. It’s two hours
away. We go back to the trailer and untack.

It’s time to eat now and take the written test.


Kelly how do you think you did? I thought it
was hard. Let’s go back and start grooming.
I’m up next on cross country. Look at Christine
go. She’s doing good. Her horse hasn’t refused
any jumps.

It’s my turn now. We sailed over jumps one


through six. Number seven will be the tough
one. It has lots of bright colored flowers. I put
on lots of leg to let KoKo know that I really
want him to jump it. Ahhhhhhhhhh we made it!
Way to go KoKo. Now just five more to go. We
sailed over the rest with no problem.
Whew! That was fun. Kelly’s up next. Go
Kelly!
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Chapter 4 – Awards
The scorers are busy on their computers
adding up all the team scores. I wonder how we
did. Everyone gets two ribbons, one for the
riding part and the other for stable management.
The announcer begins with the last place team.
We got first in horse management and second for
the riding. What a day! We met lots of new kids
and had a lot of fun. Now it’s time to pack up
all our gear and horses and begin the long drive
home.

The End

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