Lauren Shannon’s blog: looking ahead to Hopetoun Horse Trials

  • So we’ve just had our last weekend without an event until after Burghley Horse Trials. It’s scary to think Burghley is coming up so quickly, but luckily there is a lot to keep us busy until then!

    Gentel Lux has been re-routed to Hopetoun CIC** after missing Barbury, which means that we will fill the lorry to make the trip up to Scotland. This means unfortunately “Louie” (Zero Flight) can’t get a nice easy intermediate run before taking on the British open at Gatcombe in August. He will instead compete at Aston-le-Walls advanced this weekend. The novice horses will also get a run there on Friday.

    Then on Sunday I am heading to the Cottesmore branch of the Pony Club senior one-day event at Fliteriss in Rutland. Pony Club events are well organised and a great learning experience for my younger horses, plus it’s great to be able to watch the kids I teach competing! I can’t encourage people enough to get out there and compete at local events, it’s great to support the local horse community and it’s always so much fun.

    I have dressage lessons with my dressage trainer, Judy Bradwell, just about every week now leading up until Burghley. We have to work very hard on Louie’s dressage as he isn’t a big mover, so we have to show his trainability and accuracy, which means lots of preparation! I am finding that having so much help with the “little things” with Louie is improving my riding and marks on the other horses I ride.

    Yesterday, I had a dressage lesson with Irish event rider Eric Smiley, as there was a level 3 training examination for the UK Coaching Certificate at Vale View, an equestrian centre very local to me, so I was the guinea pig. It’s always informative to get a different perspective on the work I do with my horses and it’s also great for me to see the way others teach, so that I can make sure I’m doing things correctly. As I am looking to improve my teaching qualifications over time, it’s also good to get the lowdown on how these things work!

    I took Lux, and her work is really starting to improve as she strengthens. I can’t wait to get her out competing again.

    The horse which was vetted for Watling JCB has passed with no issues, so I can now tell you she is Kilcannon Credit Crunch, a five-year-old mare who is already qualified for the Burghley young event horse final this year. She is a very exciting young prospect and I really think she is one for the future.

    So until next time, I hope you all have fun with your horses,


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