The Jousting Life

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Favorite Moments from 2014: Part Five

A few more favorite moments from 2014...

...from Ivar Mauritz-Hansen of Norway:

The season of 2014 has been my best season yet, and my first season doing shaped solid lances and full contact melee, and because of that, a lot of moments spring to mind when I am called upon to supply my favorite.

Ivar Mauritz-Hansen jousting at St. Hallvard's Tournament 2014 (photo by Renate Skeie)
Ivar Mauritz-Hansen jousting at St. Hallvard's Tournament 2014 (photo by Renate Skeie)

My first tournament of the season was without doubt the most anticipated one this year. Petter Ellingsen, with others, spent years of planning and preparing for the Tournament of St. Hallvard in my home town of Oslo, Norway. After months of training, traveling to Crimea during the referendum to finish my new shoulders and helmet from Roman Tereschenko, and practicing with solid lances and wooden clubs, actually doing the tournament of that magnitude in a local venue was a true blast. To meet so many good people on and off the field really makes a tournament great, even if your merits in the lists themselves are not as good as one would like them to be.

Later in the summer, I once again went to the annual Tournament of St. Olav in Trondheim and had some really good days there with lots of good jousting. No solids this time. At the last day, I let my horse pass on the melee, as we were both tired, and my crew and I were going to Denmark that evening. So we took off all gear and walked back into the lists for the final victory lap after the melee was over. I was on his back without a saddle and my groom was leading him with just a rope.

Jouster Ivar Mauritz-Hansen, riding without gear at St. Olav's Tournament 2014 (photo by Hanne Prøis-Røhjell)
Ivar Mauritz-Hansen, riding without gear at St. Olav's Tournament 2014
(photo by Hanne Prøis-Røhjell)

At the end of the round he just let the rope go, and we cantered out of the arena with no reins, saddle or anything. It is so wonderful to be able to trust one's mount to a degree that you can let go and know that he will take care of you... even if we both know that there is a bucket with feed by the trailer right outside the arena. This truly was a great moment.

Ivar Mauritz-Hansen at St. Olav's Tournament 2014 (photo by Hanne Prøis-Røhjell)
Ivar Mauritz-Hansen at St. Olav's Tournament 2014 (photo by Hanne Prøis-Røhjell)

Then it was on to Denmark for The Tournament of the Golden Chain at the Nykøbing Medieval Center with Arne Koets and Stichting HEI (am I missing someone here?). I was really looking forward to meeting these people again after Oslo, and they did not disappoint me in or outside the lists. Jousting with Arne Koets was like getting jabbed by a bus. It was awesome. But the absolute top moment of the season was getting smashed to bits by Joram van Essen in the melee. You truly never feel alive before your body believes it's about to end. I'm looking forward to crossing clubs with Joram again in the future.

Joram van Essen(left) prepares to smash Ivar Mauritz-Hansen(right) over the head during  the mounted melee at the Tournament of the Golden Chain (photo by Middelaldercentret)
Joram van Essen(left) prepares to smash Ivar Mauritz-Hansen(right) over the head during 
the mounted melee at the Tournament of the Golden Chain (photo by Middelaldercentret)

... from Rozemarijn Keuning, who is on the cusp of becoming a jouster:

My favorite jousting moment of 2014 was of course when I had a lance broken on my shield for the first time! During the show season in 2014 and related training events, I didn't have my own horse with me here in Norway, as he was still in Spain being trained. I was lucky to have such good friends who would lend me their warhorses so I could join the training events.

Rozemarijn Keuning on the experienced jousting horse Misty  during joust training in Norway (photo by Karoline Gudbrandsen)
Rozemarijn Keuning on the experienced jousting horse Misty 
during joust training in Norway (photo by Karoline Gudbrandsen)

I purchased a second-hand armour so I could join the fun while waiting for Luke Binks to create my properly fitted jousting armour. While I was getting help with my equipment, my good friends Pelle (Per Estein Prøis-Røhjell) and Ivar (Ivar Mauritz-Hansen) decided to break some solid lances and produced such a hard hit that it almost unhorsed both of them. I must admit I was wondering why I wanted to do this so badly in that very moment!

Unfortunately, I had some trouble with my equipment rendering myself unable to break a lance on someone else's shield, but at least I had a lance broken on mine, which really was a barrier I needed to cross to proceed with my training. The picture is a still from the GoPro and mostly just a blur, but you get the idea.

Rozemarijn Keuning has a lance broken against her for the first time  (photo by Ivar Mauritz-Hansen)
Rozemarijn Keuning has a lance broken against her for the first time 
(photo by Ivar Mauritz-Hansen)

My other absolute favorite moment of the show season in 2014 was at the tournament in Trondheim. The St. Olav's Tournament is always well organized and great fun. I was squiring for Pelle and his wife took care of his horse. Of course we were very happy to get a phone call from Arundel hearing he'd won the tournament together with Ben van Koert. But best of all was that he flew straight from Arundel to Trondheim, and even though he lost a day of gathering points due to his armour getting lost on the way, he still managed to win this tournament as well! Veni Vidi Vici! Very cool.

Rozemarijn squires for Pelle(Per Estein Prøis-Røhjell) during  St. Olav's Tournament 2014 (photo by Odd Røhjell)
Rozemarijn squires for Pelle(Per Estein Prøis-Røhjell) during 
St. Olav's Tournament 2014 (photo by Odd Røhjell)

Also, Pelle finally got to ride his own horse Promyk, and of course I cannot speak for him, but I believe this was the first tournament where he did not need to spend all of his energy on his horse and could rather focus on the competition. Good training pays off, and Promyk was a star! He would do the job regardless of what was happening.

The reason why this is awesome you've probably heard before, as Promyk has a history of being dangerous to people. He ended up at Pelle's place kind of as a last resort, and if I hadn't seen it with my own eyes, I would probably have trouble believing the total change he went through during his stay. Both his body and mind needed some serious fixing, and from directly attacking people to a very reliable warhorse in such a short time is truly a great achievement. Luckily he gets to stay, and I hope it will be to the end of his days.

Rozemarijn Keuning watches Pelle compete on his jousting horse Promyk during St. Olav's Tournament 2014 (photo by Ragnhild Krogvig Karlsen)
Rozemarijn Keuning watches Pelle compete on Promyk during St. Olav's Tournament 2014
(photo by Ragnhild Krogvig Karlsen)

While writing this, I realize how lucky I am to have such great friends and teachers to train with, and I'm very much looking forward to the day I will be able to compete myself!

“Life before death, strength before weakness, journey before destination.” – Brandon Sanderson in The Way of Kings

So, these were my best jousting moments of 2014.

Cheers, Rose

... from Joel Evans of the UK, who acts as ground crew for the jousting troupe Destrier

I was unfortunately only able to attend two events this season due to work responsibilities, but of those two, Bosworth was my favourite. We often have the opportunity to hold jousts in some really spectacular castles and historic properties, and as a bit of a fan of medieval architecture, this aspect appeals to me. It makes the entire joust far more evocative and atmospheric. However, as you're probably aware, Bosworth doesn't have that draw – it's just a field in the middle of the countryside. It is, of course the site of the Battle of Bosworth, and that is something very special, which added to the experience of the event.

The joust itself was a real challenge, with adverse weather, difficult horses and very tight timing for setting up and taking down the arena, which therefore made it difficult for all members of Destrier – from the knights (and King) to the ground crew guys such as myself. But I think that was what made it so satisfying. We were able to put on a joust that ran to a successful conclusion, was enjoyed by the public and also by the other re-enactors at the event. It was hard work for everyone involved, and a lot of running backwards and forwards on my part (the lot of the ground crew!), but it's always a great feeling when everything works out a success in the end.

The Destrier Team at the Battle of Bosworth 2014 (photo by Christina Pearn)
The Destrier Team at the Battle of Bosworth 2014 (photo by Christina Pearn)

Do you have a favorite moment from 2014? Please share it in the comments.

Related articles:
Random Pic: Practicing for St Hallvard's

POV Video of the Last Six Jousting Passes at St Olav's Tournament 2014

The Tournament of the Golden Chain at the Middelaldercentret 2014

Interview with Per Estein Prøis- Røhjell, Team Champion at Arundel and Individual Champion at St Olav's 2014

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