Sunday saw a clear, dry day for the kickoff of the four-part National Jumping Series, hosted by the Cayman Islands Equestrian Federation at the Cayman Riding School.
The show started in the morning over a flowing but challenging course that tested the competitors at various points such that no clear round was recorded until the fourth class of the day. By then, most of the riders had one round under their belt and had figured out how to tackle the 10 obstacles with aplomb.
Highlights of the day included four entries in the .8m pony class, which is the highest number ever at that height for a CIEF show, and is indicative of the steady advancement of the islands’ young riders. There were also several riders who moved up to the .9m open class this year, which fielded four horses and, surprisingly, one pony rider, which was another first for the CIEF.
Many of the competitors used this past weekend’s show to prep for the upcoming Regional Jumping Challenge sponsored by the Caribbean Equestrian Association. The RJC is an event that allows riders from the CEA member countries of Bermuda, Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and the Cayman Islands to compete against each other without having the horses and riders travel. Instead, the CEA prescribes the exact course specifications that each country must build and use for its leg of the competition. Riders are scored based upon the faults they generate over two jumping rounds, with the time taken in the second round breaking any ties.
The CIEF leg of the RJC will take place on Sunday, Nov. 26 at the Equestrian Center located on the Linford Pierson Highway starting at 8 a.m. Spectators are welcome and admission is free.