Lauren Shannon’s eventing blog: relaxed competing in the sun

  • What a lovely week we have just had! It has been so nice to go to events and have the sun shine all day, and work on our tans while riding too.

    I had a quiet weekend by eventing standards, with only Crunchie (Kilcannon Watlings Crunch) going to the CIC2* at the St James’ Place Barbury Horse Trials. She had her dressage test on Friday afternoon, and was due to jump on Saturday afternoon. I headed down on my own on Friday and Crunchie did what I would consider is her best test so far at 2-star level. She behaved in a much more grown-up manner, and despite one silly little mistake, I was really pleased with her.

    Unfortunately, her mark didn’t reflect how she felt (as it sometimes can with dressage.) but I am pleased that she is improving and showing that she will do a fabulous test one day.

    We took Crunchie out of the stable on Saturday morning to get her ready and sadly she had a splint forming on one of her forelegs. Although she is sound, both her owners Watling JCB and I decided it wasn’t worth the risk of running her, especially considering that she has already jumped around two CIC2*s this year clear.

    This meant that I had an impromptu afternoon off on Saturday, which was spent picking strawberries and cooing over Alta, the two-week-old foal out of Delphi (Quixotic). She is proving to be a huge time-waster, and is cheekier and bolder than any of us imagined!

    Delphi and Alta are heading back to Oakham Vets next week in order for Delphi to be put back in-foal. The poor girl is probably wondering when this retirement I had told her was coming is going to turn up!

    Placed at Buckminster

    On Sunday, I headed to Buckminster Park for a novice run with Holly (Riffala Du Buisson) and a BE100 run on Will (As You Will), one of my working student’s horses.

    It was blisteringly hot during the day there, so I was happy to get Holly finished before noon. She did a nice test, followed by a steady double clear, to finish 15th.

    Will went on to show up Holly with a 29 dressage and again a steady double clear to finish 6th. Not a bad day at the office, and we were even back in time to sit in the garden for dinner! I could definitely get used to eventing like this….

    On a more sombre note, fellow event rider Laura Collett had a fall at Tweseldown on Monday and is currently hospitalised. It is horrible to hear of any rider being injured out eventing and it puts into sharp perspective how many risks there are in our sport.

    All of us at Shannon Eventing send our love and good wishes to her and her family during what must be a horrible time. Laura is one of our country’s most talented young event riders, and I am sure she will be out winning again as soon as she can.


    Full report on Barbury in H&H magazine out today, 11 July. 

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