David Britnell’s first-time Badminton blog: I am having the time of my life!

What a fantastic day to start our Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials competition we had yesterday (Wednesday 1 May).

An early start saw me hand grazing Continuity in front of the house, where I have longed to be. I then grounded myself by catching up with a car magazine I rarely have time which was a treat. I then had a fun cycle round the tradestands, picking up bits and bobs which finished off my first horse inspection outfit beautifully, bow tie included.

Credit: Tilly Berendt

Having hacked for a while I then took my first look at the cross-country course while my super-grooms tended to Brad.

The trot-up came around quickly as these things often do. My horse was extremely laid back beforehand but livened up when he saw the crowds! He charged off in a rather unmannerly fashion after the turn but was better behaved than many. “Continuity accepted” was called out and I could breathe!

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It was time for some arena familiarisation next when Brad met a moving camera close up at ground level. I am not sure he noticed the cameras above his head though! A check over by his marvellous physio Anna Johnson was next on the cards, followed by supper then bed. We’re having lots of fun so far and have meetings and a dressage warm up tomorrow [now today] because our date with the big arena is on Friday at 10.42am.

The canteen is incredible here, the officials amazingly friendly yet efficient and I am having the time of my life!


Read our full Badminton form guide in this week’s issue of Horse & Hound (issue dated 2 May 2019).

Our bumper 25-page Badminton report will be in our 9 May issue, including opinion from Mark Phillips and Peter Storr.

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