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Is this the ultimate ‘I can’t believe it’ equestrian competition moment?

Is this the “I can’t believe it” competition moment to beat all others?

You’re all ready to go into your dressage test. You’ve spent the previous 24 hours prepping for the event, including polishing your horse to within an inch of his life, plaiting his mane, cleaning your tack and getting your own clothes in top order.

You mount your horse and ride to the dressage warm-up. You start working him, yes, he’s going well, this is going to be a good test.

You’re the next one in… and suddenly, your horse decides he has an uncontrollable urge to get down in the mud. Yes, that’s right, he decides he absolutely cannot wait and he just has to have a roll right now. And so he does.

Let’s be honest, I think we’d all cry if this happened to us… and probably declare that anyone who fancied him could take the horse away and we were taking up crochet, table tennis or tiddlywinks.

This exact scenario happened to teenager Jemima Shaw when her horse Cranny Volt – aka “Naughty Brian” – rolled in the mud just as she was about to go in for her dressage test in the under-18 BE100open at Swalcliffe Park last weekend.

However, Jemima is clearly made of sterner stuff than those of us who would quietly weep and quit eventing in this scenario – she and her mother Kirsty wiped Brian down, Jemima hopped back on and they got on with their day, scoring 33 for their dressage and adding just two time-penalties to finish fourth in the section.

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This was the pair’s best placing at a British Eventing horse trials, but we hope they won’t have to take such an unconventional approach in future to repeat their success.

Congratulations to Jemima and Naughty Brian.

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