The season is in full swing now and we have been out eventing lots in the past couple of weeks.
We went to the fantastic Somerley Park Horse Trials in Hampshire where we had Archie (Arise Cavalier) in the novice, Ruby (Rubabell Cruise, pictured) in her first intermediate and Kitkat (Another Breakfast) in the open intermediate (OI).
Ruby was the star of the day pulling out a lovely test and a double clear with a few time faults to finish a close second. I couldn’t have been more thrilled with her and she made the cross-country feel easy.
Kitkat had a good run finishing with a confident steady clear cross-country.
Archie was on the naughty step having been a little cheeky in the showjumping, but redeemed himself by giving me a great ride cross-country.
I have taken on two new rides while my poor friend Alice Montgomery is out with a broken arm after a fall at Aldon Horse Trials last month.
Alice has done a great job with them both and I feel very privileged to be able to keep them ticking over for her while she mends.
I had my first outing on them both at Portman Horse Trials in Wiltshire; Hettie in the novice and Max in the intermediate novice.
They both did really nice tests, but have lots more to come when I find the right buttons to press. The jumping phases were a bit of a learning curve as we still need to get to know each other, but I was pleased with how they both went and hopefully we can build on this for their next events.
I also had Emma Fisher’s two lovely hunters out again for a run round their second BE100 (Graigue Hero and Branchfield Galloway). They came out much more confident (and a little cocky!) this time thinking they knew what it was all about so sadly their dressage tests suffered a little!
They were fabulous in the jumping though and had learnt lots from Aldon, which was great. They are now going to have a well-deserved break and will come out again in the autumn for a couple more events.
I have to say what an amazing new venue the Portman has on the Rushmore Estate and a big thank you must go to the Yarrows for putting on such a great event. The cross-country ran on the old turf in the park and the going was perfect. There was masses of room for the dressage and showjumping and all the feedback I heard was very positive.
It can’t be said enough how lucky we are to have all these amazing venues to compete at and we were at another of my favourites at the weekend, Weston Park in Shropshire.
It is a bit of a trek from us in Dorset, but always well worth it with lovely big, bold courses encouraging forward riding. We just took Kitkat up for the OI and he was on his best behaviour posting a foot perfect double clear with a good dressage test. He picked up a few time faults on the cross-country to put him just outside the top 10.
It was devastating to hear of another eventing fatality in Italy over the weekend making it two in the last month for our sport. It certainly puts life into perspective and condolences go to all family and friends.
(Photo credit: Tanzy Lee)