Hazel Towers’ Burghley first-timer blog: on the verge of a possible meltdown

  • Day one at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials is complete.

    Arriving on Tuesday, we set up camp which consists of a “kitchen” in the back of the lorry with fridge/freezer/cooker and all our feed storage (human and horse). We have also erected two living pods outside the lorry, one for dining and one for sleeping, who needs pop out sides on their wagon when Argos deliver a similar standard living arrangements at a fraction of the price?!

    Arriving at Burghley

    As I write this, we are sitting in total darkness since the “leisure” battery on the lorry is a little overly ‘leisurely’ and stopped working altogether!

    Ready for the trot-up

    Yesterday afternoon (29 August) was the trot-up. It was also Clover’s first experience of the main arena and despite having to pass several cross-country fences on the way, she was very good. I managed to keep up with her without any wardrobe malfunctions, but it did rain very heavily on the walk up. Luckily though it stopped before my turn so I didn’t give the stewards a fright in my cream shirt!

    The plan was to walk the cross-country yesterday evening, however there was an arena familiarisation I felt she would benefit from doing — a decision I later regretted after cantering sideways back past all the cross-country fences — today’s dressage could be interesting as I feel the fifth time passing the fences may cause her to go into melt down — she can’t understand why she can’t just jump them already!

    Trot-up complete

    Continues below…

    We had an early night in prep for an early course walk and schooling session before our 2.16pm test. The atmosphere around the stables is a lot quieter than I expected, but I guess it is good for the horses and riders as we need to get our rest before the fun kicks off.

    Clover helping unpack

    Looking forward to updating you all after we’ve got that walk out of the way.


    You can read the full Burghley report in next week’s Horse & Hound magazine (Thursday 6 September).

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