I am delighted to say that after not being able to go to an event for weeks, we’ve been to three in the past six days! It feels great to get back out there and the horses are fresh and loving it too.
We headed to Subaru Houghton International Horse Trials on Wednesday last week for the CIC*** with Mikey (McFly), and Gentel Lux came along to do some jumping classes. Mikey did a great test and a good showjumping round, but a complete rider error on the course three from home meant we had to circle in a combination, so picked up 20 penalties. It was only our third event together and I love riding him so I’m sure it’s just getting to know one another!
Lux competed in the eventer’s grand prix, which is a class I have always loved – it is quick and brilliant to watch. This was Lux’s first one, so I was really pleased with her third place. She is so quick and nippy, I think this class could be a specialty for her in the future.
Di Wass, the wonderful secretary at Houghton, had emailed me before the event asking if I wanted to do the AmTrust high jump competition, and although Lux has never done a class like this either I figured it’d be a bit of fun. Only me, Lawrence Hunt and J-P Sheffield contested it, but it was a huge buzz to jump such a big fence!
It got up to 1.80m, which is by far the biggest I’ve ever jumped, and I finished second to J-P after clearing 1.75m – we couldn’t quite do the 1.80m. When you have a fence down in this class, you have to take a layer of clothing off, and luckily J-P and Lawrence had to do it before I did! It was a fun class to do and it made me fall in love with Lux a little bit more, as she was four and five years younger than the other horses there.
On Sunday, it was back on the road to Bishop Burton and Lux showed that she can go from high jump classes back to eventing very quickly, with a great 32 dressage and a double clear, to finish sixth in her intermediate section.
Then yesterday we headed to Shelford Manor, where a couple of my students were competing in the BE100. Shelford was a lovely atmosphere to finish off the week of eventing because it is so chilled out and the ice cream van was nearby!
So now it’s time to get Crunchie (Kilcannon Credit Crunch), the six-year-old owned by Watling JCB, to her first intermediate this weekend, in preparation for our next three-day, Balcarres. As I write this, the sun is shining into the house, and it finally feels like we are going to have a brilliant summer’s eventing.
Full report from Houghton – including pictures of Lauren jumping the fence – in H&H this Thursday, 31 May.