Edwina Alexander’s road to WEG: Itot makes a good recovery

  • Itot (Cevo Itot Du Château) has recovered well from his slight injury and we have both been very busy over the last couple of months on the Global Champions Tour (GCT). We have competed in Cannes, which I won with Itot, and was the only rider with three clear rounds, Monte Carlo, Estoril and Chantilly, where I came third and was beaten by two ladies – Laura Kraut and Pénélope Leprevost. He really feels back to his normal self, which is grea,t and he’s been jumping extremely well.

    I went to the Formula One Grand Prix in Monaco where we stayed with some friends and had a spectacular view as the cars came out of the tunnel. It was great to see fellow Aussie, Mark Webber, win, although it was disappointing that the National Anthem was played a day late and not in Hamburg!

    After the GCT round in Turin, I went to Wiesbaden where I had a really good show. On the first day I was second with Socrates (Cevo Socrates), and my young horse, Kisby (8-y-o), was second in the young horses. The following day I won the final of the youngster tour and Socrates was fourth in one of the other classes. Zorro went clear in the Grand Prix, but he went a little bit green in the jump off and he had a couple down, which was a shame.

    Younger horses make progress

    I’ve had time to concentrate on some of my younger horses during May and June while Itot had some time off. Kisby has stood out from the rest and been very impressive; she’s only had one fence down during four shows, and she has been placed in every class – I’m very happy with her. I don’t know if she’ll ever be as good as Itot, but she’ll definitely be a very good second horse. We’ve clicked really fast and really seem to suit each other.

    I also have a new 8-year-old mare called Ciske Van Overis, who jumped in the GCT with Guy Williams, and I think she could be a very interesting new horse for me. I jumped her in Cannes and I also took her to a small three star show in San Remo, so all-in-all a great new addition to the team.

    The team behind the scenes

    Getting my horses to and from shows and deciding which ones need to go to where is very much down to Jan [Tops] and I, and it can be quite an episode!

    We’ve got a permanent full-time vet based in Holland, who checks all of the horses before they travel on to shows, or before they travel back to Stal Tops in Holland. We also have an osteopath, but he is required only when there is an urgent need for him, and he’s based in Switzerland.

    I have one groom, who is always with Itot, and another groom who travels around and does bit and pieces with the rest of the horses. Finally, I have a third groom based at Stal Tops, who looks after my other horses while I am away travelling, which is a lot of the time!

    I’ve been concentrating on not doing to much and have been resting whenever possible over the last couple of months. The aim has been to focus on the big competitions, but to get results we have to pay special attention to the horses, particularly their hydration levels in the recent heat. It’s a balancing act of not doing too much, but enough!

    It’s very important for me to get enough good results to stay in the top-10 of the Rolex Rankings during the month of August as that’s when the decisions are made with regards to pre-qualifications for the Rolex FEI World Cup Series, so my focus, apart from on the WEG, is going to be very much on that.

    Edwina Alexander, Olympic and World Equestrian Games Jumper, is a friend of Rolex. Edwina will be competing at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games

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