We have just arrived home from a very successful trip to Holland with C Fatal Attraction, aka Jorge (pictured earlier this year).

It was his second international; his first one was in April where he went to Deauville in France with Reece.

Roosendaal was the first international show where he wouldn’t be in Reece’s shadow, however my expectations for him were low. Prolific rider Frank Hosmar from the Netherlands, has been in the medals for the past six years, and he was at his home show, plus there were many other grade IVs on the radar.

Andy from saddlers S Milner & Son made Jorge a special handmade bridle for the occasion, he looked stunning in it and it fits perfectly!

The weather didn’t prove to be the easiest, although for most of the time the rain stayed away, it was very windy; the arenas were very close together and busy, with lots going on around them.

Jorge coped with the travelling and settled into his new ‘bedroom’ really well. He has really come on since Deauville, in his mind and body, and I think this really showed in Roosendaal.

The quality of his work was on another level. He won the team test with 73.4%, and then the individual with 74.4%, 6% and 5% ahead of what he scored in Deauville’s for the same tests, which smashed his international personal bests.

The freestyle day was going to be interesting. He hadn’t done three days of competition in a row before, so he did feel a little tired, but during the warm up he picked up and felt really good.

I’m in the process of producing a freestyle of his own with a very special person arranged to do his music, but at the moment he is still borrowing a 10-year-old piece of music, titled ‘The Crazy Frog’. I love this music but the floor plan is very easy, and just devised to include the compulsory elements, not specifically for Jorge. To my delight we got a massive 76%, but Frank did an amazing test to win on 80%, which he fully deserved!

I couldn’t have been more proud of Jorge on this trip. He has grown up so much, and started to put his mark on the international scene. He’s still so young, and has a promising future.

I must say a big thanks to his owner Charlotte for allowing me to ride him and bring him on, and Angela for helping and providing me with guidance while producing him. It is a massive team effort when we go away as part of Equestrian Team GBR, none of which would be possible without the UK Sport and Lottery funding which enables team vet Rod to travel with the horses, alongside Karen the team osteopath who also treats them through the show to keep them in top shape, and Lucy our physio who does a great job keeping us functioning in the best way. Also thanks to Mark for transporting them once again.

We now look forward to Hickstead, which is the British para dressage national championships and part of selection, plus I’m excited to get some of the new and younger horses on the yard out to local competitions.

Sophie