Sophie Wells’ dressage blog: disappointing prize-money and goodbye to Ed

  • I have now done show plans for 6 horses which I need to compete in 2014, with many of those being big national and international competitions. Calculating the costs, it looks like I’ll need to get another job to support my calendar! I do sometimes wish that the prize-money supported the cost of actually competing, as it does make it more difficult!

    One fundraising event I attended recently was for the junior sport programme for Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire. I was the after-dinner speaker, just before the auction. The evening’s efforts raised a fantastic £12,000 to help the young people in the counties.

    We are also in the process of creating our own RDA [Riding for the Disabled]. We don’t have one locally and as we already base ourselves around disability riding, it made sense. So I’m sure we will soon be looking for ponies to join our team, and donations to help it all get up and running. Our aim is to provide riding for therapy but also a link between RDA and para sport for those that want to progress. Exciting stuff, but lots of paperwork and forms to wade through still!

    A new start for Purdy’s Dream

    This week we also said a sad goodbye to Emma Sheardown’s horse, Purdys Dream [pictured], aka Ed. He left for his new home, so best of luck to Ed with your lovely new owner, and a massive thank you to Ed for making Emma’s dreams come true and taking her to her first gold medals. He’s done his duty and now deserves some fun time, but we will definitely miss him!

    Back to work for Noki [Pinnochio] who is now fit enough to start his lessons again, picking up with the grand prix work. We’ve been concentrating on simplifying the piaffe and passage and using lots of trot transitions in between to help him. As always, the holiday has done him good and he is raring to go!

    Finally a big thank you to my new sponsors Jon Williams Stables for the field shelter. Touchdown (my Beijing 2008 Olympic horse) will be using it with a small pen as he continues to rehabilitate and recover from his tendon injury. Fingers crossed!

    All the best, Soph x

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