‘I treasure every moment’: Classic Moet’s groom on tending the no-fuss veteran star

  • Jonelle Price’s groom Kerryn Edmans is “treasuring every moment” as she prepares her charge, Classic Moet, for their third attempt at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials. The mare, known at home as Molly, is 19 years old, and Kerryn admits that “you always wonder if this is her last big event”.

    “It’s phenomenal that she’s 19 and going into her second five-star horse trials of the year,” says Kerryn of the 2018 Badminton winner. “It’s so special to see, and you just want her to come home safe and sound. But I trust the two of them – Jonelle and Molly – combined. They are just a force of nature.”

    The black mare by Classic x Bohemond has an impeccable cross-country record at five-star level, with 11 clears from 11 starts. In her two previous visits, she has finished third and fifth.

    “She is very happy to be back, like all of us,” says Kerryn, who is at the Lincolnshire event for the sixth time. “She is feeling fabulous. She knows exactly why she is here and is thrilled about it. She came off the lorry with her neck upside down with excitement. And when I took her to trot-up, she was jig-jogging sideways – and then she saw some cross-country fences, and I had to say to her, ‘it’s not time for that yet’.

    “She hates the trot-up. She chews at the bit, foams at the mouth, does whatever it takes not to look glamorous. Trot-up isn’t her thing, her thing is Saturday [cross-country]. From what I hear of the track, it’s big, and that is very good news for Molly. And the ground is amazing.”

    ‘I love to watch her across country’

    Kiwi Kerryn Edmans first started working for the Prices in 2013, her mother Michelle having previously worked for Tim back in New Zealand. She describes Molly as a “funny character”.

    “She’s pretty cool. She is minimalistic, she doesn’t want any fuss or doting. She likes a friend, but not too close – she’ll snarl if they get too close. She might snarl at me too, so I always carry Polos – she loves any treats, carrots, apples, Polos…”

    Kerryn is right on hand to attend to her star’s every need, being bagged a “prime spot” right next to the stables. She is sharing a trailer with two other grooms.

    “Tim and Jonelle bought a trailer with living so we can stay there next to the truck, but I can get up and have my coffee and feed the horses without having to wake the bosses,” she says! “But they’re amazing to work for.”

    Jonelle Price's Kerryn Edmans with Molly

    Jonelle will enter the arena at 2.10pm on Thursday (1 September), having ridden Molly “once or twice” in the morning, and Kerryn will hand-graze the mare, too.

    “Jonelle will do whatever Molly needs to bring out her best,” she says. “Dressage isn’t her strongest phase – she’s not so gifted – so bring on Saturday.”

    And while Jonelle and Molly do the business, Kerryn will “try to enjoy” watching from the ground.

    “I love to watch her go cross-country, but I hide in the showjumping, that makes me more nervous,” she says.

    Molly is one of the best cross-country horses in the world, and it’s a privilege for everyone to witness her still so competitive in the twilight of her career.

    “You have to treasure every moment,” Kerryn says. “I cried all through Badminton – and I’ll definitely cry here too.”

    Tomorrow: meet Adam Short, groom for Tom McEwen and CHF Cooliser

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