What is the value of one degree?
At 99˚C water is still just water but, at 100˚C it boils and becomes steam; on the back of that 1˚, an industrial revolution was built.
Electronic clocks are accurate to 1/100th second – it takes longer to blink. In a show-jumping round that one blink, could mean the difference between first place, or not.
The horses that can turn more tightly and brake more quickly or, whose changes are more fluent and paces more expressive, become the superstars. Being a winner is not just genetics. It is more than exceptional breeding, conformation and luck; it is years of careful training, conditioning, and the very best care and management. An F1 racing car will not run with dodgy fuel or flat tyres; if the mechanics are not slick and practised at their job.
It is all about the team around the horse and, being the best owner, rider, trainer, you can possibly be. One important step towards this goal is knowledge. None of us are experts at everything but, if you take care to never stop learning, and pay attention to those minute details, your horse may well be the one whose turns are tighter, who finds that extra centimetre over a pole or, who is just that bit more expressive in his dressage test.
Food for thought – have a fab weekend!