That's right! Ryker did his first "ditch" this week. He was awesome, and by "ditch" I mean a big black plastic trash bag held down by two natural poles in the ring. That is as close as I can get to jumping at ditch at the moment, but he was game and didn't pause, once he understood that he was simply supposed to jump over it. We've also conquered the "nasty pile of rocks drainage ditch," he doesn't even look at it now. What a good race horse! We've also started to jump colorful things and more solidly build fences in the ring (i.e. fully packed flower boxes and gates) in an attempt to test the waters in terms of jumping strange things the first time, without looking at them. He's been very good, and we're hoping to do the Alfred Open Show if all goes well.
(Just a reminder, he is still for sale! - He will be available in Alfred until mid May. After that he will be coming home to Vermont with me for the summer, where I may or may not purchase him depending on how he stacks up against my other personally owned OTTB -- since only 1 competition horse is in the long term budget, he will remain for sale until I make a decision)
On another note, any one out there have any other fun cross country type exercises they work on in the indoor during the winer months? (I have a few, but I typically devote my winters to a let down, easy trot sets, tuning up our dressage, and gymnastic work)