Rain, rain and lots of wind!

But that didn’t stop us, although it has made everything that little bit harder. It’s times like this when you think “why do we do this?”, but I soon remembered when we started filling out our Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials entry form.

I started doing the entry form online, but it didn’t quite go to plan, so I decided to do it the old-fashioned way and fill one in by hand. It’s all ready to post — but I’ve got no stamps, so that’s a job for today!

Anyway, with lots going on including hosting a jumping clinic last Sunday, everyone in the team has been busy. We had “Joe” (my Badminton ride, Uptons Who) shod on Friday by my farrier Paul Conway, plus a few others. Paul was happy with Joe’s feet and we have agreed a schedule for his shoes for the next few months running up to the big day.

The following day we were off to some British Showjumping at Aintree. Joe was very happy to be out and jumped a lovely double clear. It was a good day — I took three horses and they all jumped great. To top it off, Kelsey Gill, who bought a super jumping horse from us called Not Just A Toy, came second in a field of over 80 and qualified for the Blue Chip Championships at Hartpury. Well done Kelsey!

On to plan B

On Sunday Joe had a relaxing day while I was teaching, before getting straight back to his strict regime the following day, with a brisk hack round the block and a trot up the hill to our house, before heading into the school to work long and low, stretching down in trot and canter.

We were supposed to be cross-country schooling on Tuesday, but unfortunately the weather wasn’t on our side so we have hopefully re-organised to go later in the week… fingers crossed!

So moving on to plan B, we headed back to at Aintree showjumping — indoors, nice and dry, I could get used to this! Joe jumped in the Foxhunter (left and above) and did a lovely clear in the first phase, but had an unlucky pole in the jump-off. Normally I would be a bit disappointed to have a pole, but Joe was clearly far more annoyed than me as he kicked out on landing and then jumped really high over the remaining fences.

Well, I’m off to the gallops today — Joe will no doubt be very pleased to be let loose, so I will let you know how it goes, along with the rearranged cross-country schooling. We also have dressage training coming soon so lots planned.

Till next week,

Ben

Ben will be blogging on www.horseandhound.co.uk every week in the build-up to his first Badminton, so check back next week to read more.

Read Ben’s first two blogs

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