Round up for May – wow what a month we’ve had! From dressage filming, Badminton & Windsor, outings with friends, 24/7 turnout and a photo shoot! It’s fair to say May has been quite a busy month but I have enjoyed every second.
Finally the boys are out 24/7 and enjoying the grass and freedom of not being in their stable of a nighttime. I actually have free time; not having to muck out, do hay nets etc! A wheelbarrow of poo picking each morning and the field is clear. I’m not constantly dashing around like a lunatic and I feel so much better for it! I have even managed to get to work early, yes you heard that right, EARLY…!
May was also the month of the two huge horse events; Royal Windsor Horse Show and Badminton Horse Trials. It doesn’t feel like it was only last month, it feels like a distant memory now! We had the absolute best time and I wish I could do it all over again.
On the Hammy front, he has been feeling fab! I have finally got to grips with keeping my contact in the canter, sounds like common sense but for the life of me I couldn’t do it! Every canter transition I would give him the rein and poor Ham would stick his head out in a bid to try and balance himself. But in my lesson a couple of weeks ago, I just got it and the canter has been amazing ever since. It was one of those real ‘break through’ moments, you know, when something just clicks into place and feels right!
I had another Dressage Anywhere test to film for our May Prelim entry. It was Prelim 2 and it’s actually a test I have ridden a few times before, which is always helpful! It went a lot better than the test we filmed in April. We got a 67.07%, which is a whopping 4% more than last month! Lots of 6.5 & 7’s which I was over the moon about. With dressage, it can be easy to focus on the negatives, with everything under scrutiny (Your effectiveness, your position, your accuracy, the horses way of going… I mean the list goes on!) it can be easy to feel down about things when they aren’t perfect. But actually, amongst the things that aren’t quite right, you can also see the hard work you’ve been doing has paid off and it keeps you busy with new things to work on and improve. It’s our second qualifying mark for the Dressage Anywhere BD Online Asso
ciated Championships, so just one more to go now.
The bank holiday weekend just gone was a busy one, with a show everyday of the weekend for my best friends – it was a full horsey weekend and I couldn’t think of a better way to spend it.
Katie and Tigger had a dressage outing to Hickstead, competing in the international arena nonetheless! They had two Prelim tests to complete with an early start (the first test was at 08:36!) but Tigger behaved beautifully, he was so grown up and took everything in his stride. With lots to look at, he let Katie reassure him it was okay and the tests rode beautifully.
Katie’s Round Up: Excellent result with a 67.20% in the Prelim 15 and a 64.66% in the Prelim 17. I am over the moon with the marks, with an 8 for one of the trot circles in the 17 test, and the judges commenting ”A very elegant horse with a lot of potential”, a comment to be so proud of! Almost exactly a year ago, I had the same judge who scored us only 52%, so to be getting 8%more this time from the same judge made it even more of an achievement for us both.
On Sunday it was Julia’s turn, taking the wonderful Wizard to Brinsbury College for Dressage. It was their first outing since the end of Summer last year and it’s been a really hard winter for them both with some huge (and by huge I mean absolutely, massive) obstacles to tackle. So this was a big day, but there was nothing to be worried about, a lot of hard work and training has gone on over the last few months and they are a real team, so we knew the day would be a success and it really was!
Julia’s Round Up: Clever Wiz got a 67.37% in the Prelim 1, to take the win! With a 65% in the intro to Canter. Really proud of his work and how obedient he was, it was a huge achievement and relief to have gotten on him without any drama, let alone win any rosettes! Now to sort out that canter, so he stays round and start practising to get out jumping!
Finally, on the Bank Holiday Monday it was Laura’s turn, taking the Big Ginger Biscuit out for show jumping at Coombelands. They had entered both the 80cm & 90am classes, with a 2 hour gap between each. We were lucky with beautiful weather over the weekend but it was really quite warm on the Monday, I have to say I didn’t envy Laura and Biscuit that day. However, they didn’t let the heat get to them, with an absolutely amazing round in the 80cm. I didn’t get to stay for the 90cm, but from the photos they looked fab – even if the weather took a turn for the worst with dark grey menacing clouds and rumbling thunder.
Laura’s Round Up: We came 4th out of 25 in the 80cm and 4th in the 90cm too! Unfortunately I haven’t got a note of our times, but not bad at all for our first proper show jumping debut and we’re sunshine tour qualified too!
Lastly, after a jam-packed bank holiday weekend there was one more horsey day on the calendar for May, one I had been looking forward to the entire month… a very special visit from the marvellous, talented and lovely Sophie Callahan. Sophie came to our yard and took some photos of Hamish and I. We had so much fun on our photo shoot, I enjoyed every second. I thought I might feel a bit nervous or awkward but at no point throughout the shoot did I feel that way at all! I do have another post coming up with more details about the day, outfit choices, how I prepared and a hopefully few photos from the day, so keep an eye out if you want to know more about the photo shoot day itself.
As always, thank you for checking in and have a wonderful week.