Showjump­ing David Cole

David Cole re­flects on build­ing for a large show and boost­ing rider con­fi­dence

Horse & Hound - - Contents - David Cole is a renowned course-de­signer.

BUILD­ING at a show for five days gives a course-de­signer plenty of scope to build var­ied tracks.

Start­ing off with flow­ing, easy-go­ing dis­tances, we grad­u­ally built up to more tech­ni­cal cour­ses that asked more ques­tions.

Al­though some riders were vis­i­bly ap­pre­hen­sive at first, it was nice to see them im­prove and grow in con­fi­dence over the fol­low­ing few days.

In a ring of this size, it is easy to build up to height with no tricky dis­tances or catch fences.

Ev­ery course was dif­fer­ent, and I make a point of ac­cu­rately mea­sur­ing the length in full view of ev­ery­one, so they can see where we had wheeled, and it was good to note how much more at­ten­tive riders be­came, to the point of even notic­ing when we moved is­lands.

I think the stan­dard of rid­ing has been ex­cel­lent, par­tic­u­larly in the 148cm classes and, given the num­ber of en­tries and classes, there were very few cricket scores or elim­i­na­tions.

This is the first time I’ve built on the new sur­face here. It was rolled af­ter ev­ery class and it rode very well — com­peti­tors seemed to ride with more con­fi­dence.

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