Well, the weeks go by so quickly….

An exciting package arrived from Italy last Wednesday, a smart new tack locker for taking to competitions. This looks like a really good asset — as long as there are a few of you to get it up the ramp.

We had an early start on Saturday morning for the trip to Lincolnshire. I competed Chequers Playboy in an open novice section. He was a good boy in the dressage and jumped very well in the show jumping, but unfortunately we had two down, which to be honest were my fault as I forgot that lovely deep spots require leg. I’m putting it down to first event nerves. I was really impressed on the cross-country — he felt a year older and gave me a beautiful ride round.

Saturday night was fun as we were entertaining for 10 in the lorry. I had been very organised and made two big lasagnas which were well received. We had some unexpected entertainment, but I can’t really go into that as I need to save someone a red face…

My Badminton horse, Big El (“Eliot”), did his usual rendition of a dressage test in the open intermediate at Lincoln — I really do think that maybe he could have a chat with Christopher Bartle and see if he could put some of his moves in the test, then we would lead by miles!

The show jumping was awful. Over the first three fences, I came in a lovely quiet rhythm with a lovely stride and we hit them. So I changed gear and the rest of the round went really well. Lesson learnt!

Eliot was a true pleasure around the cross-country. He is so easy and he reminded me why I love him after the other two phases.

After I had jumped off from my cross-country round I ran over to see my horse, Fernhill Fearless, who my fiance Hayden has the pleasure of riding. He did a “fancy toes” dressage test and jumped a springy show jumping round, then cruised round the cross-country in a very stylish fashiont to finish seventh. We were very pleased with him, which made our trip home a long but cheery one. Goodbye Lincoln for another year — and I shouldn’t forget to mention we were blessed with sunshine, which was a very welcome surprise.

Next stop Draycott…

Dee