On Saturday, 24 th March, in lovely sunny Spring weather, Leinster TREC held a ridden POR training day. This was part of a series designed to assist riders at Level 2 who wish to either improve their skills at that level or progress to Level 3 competition. TREC trainer Bambi Carroll, a Level 4 International rider, travelled to Coolmine EC in Co Dublin to give the benefits of her experience & skills to the riders.
The day started with each rider measuring their horse’s stride number, over a distance of 50 metres, in both walk and trot. This is essential for knowing how far to travel if asked: ‘On a Bearing of 185° ride for a distance of 75 metres’. Riders then continued with a series of different Bearings routes laid out throughout the acres of the equestrian centre. Riders had the opportunity to try to follow the detailed instructions for each set of Bearings, learning how to sit on the back of a moving horse while using their compass at the same time. It was a great opportunity in a training environment to be able to take time to return and repeat a step, if any rider was unsure of their accuracy.
After the morning spent on Bearings, riders and horses returned to the venue for a welcome break. Bambi then started the afternoon session with theory practice on maps in the venue’s conference centre. Riders were given lots of hints and tips and then were asked to copy map routes within a given time and also to check their ability to locate gridpoints on a map.
The day then ended with riders and horses heading out from the equestrian centre on a short route to put into practice all the skills they had learned. Similar to a competition day, they were given a map and instruction sheet with a set of Gridpoints to mark on it before leaving the venue and riding to each point in turn, using their compasses and looking for tickets to write down on the way. All riders and horses completed this part very successfully and the day ended on a high note.
Leinster TREC are very grateful to Bambi for giving her time and expertise for the benefit of all the riders who gained enormously from the whole day.