Well that’s the dressage done and every part of me is completely drenched.
The weather wasn’t too bad this morning, but the rain has got heavier and heavier throughout the day. And then when I thought it couldn’t possibly get any worse, the heavens opened just as we entered the arena!
I am really pleased with how Sky [Star Prospect] coped with the conditions. She looked like we had been cross-country when we got back to the stables. While the ground is holding up really well, the centre line was pretty ploughed up. Initially she felt a little tense, but then she relaxed into the atmosphere, and we even scored an 8 for one flying change!
My trainer Elizabeth Winter came to warm me up before the dressage, which was a real help. She was very positive and kept me calm and focussed before we went in. I really enjoyed it and I think we produced the best test we could. Our best ever score at three-star is a 51 and today we scored 54.5, so not bad at all.
I’m really excited about tomorrow. I walked the cross-country course with Nigel Taylor yesterday evening and I’m going to go and walk it again now.
I’m planning to take the long route at The Discovery Vallery (fences 6 and 7abc), as it’s a massive question so early on the course and I don’t want to pick up 20pen at this early stage. I think she would probably jump it but I’m not going to take the chance.
The other fence I’m not quite sure about is the Land Rover Arena Fence (27, 28ab, 29). It’s a very strong two strides in, or three very short ones, so a lot will depend on how Sky is feeling when we get there. I’m quite late to go tomorrow so I’ll watch a few people first to see how it’s riding.
The ground is going to be deep by the time I get on course, but Sky ran really well in heavy ground at Thirlestane so I’m going to be positive, attack and remember to keep hold of her head.
Wish me luck.