What a show Olympia, the London International Horse Show, was. It was a very British affair for a World Cup qualifier, but it was a real celebration of the best our nation has to offer with some special guests — notably Germany’s Frederic Wandres with the British-bred Duke Of Britain — giving everyone a run for their money.
The short grand prix rode much better then last year. I’m glad the canter zig-zag was included, as it’s a key test of balance, and that the very difficult trot half-passes, the ultimate test of suppleness, have remained. Having the one tempi changes in between the pirouettes tests straightness and control, as the rider needs ultimate collection for the pirouettes but must be brave to ride forward for the changes up the centre line in between. Take this as a salutary reminder to all to practise riding plenty of transitions with horses of all levels in the new year.