Brad was wonderful at Hartpury in the CIC3*, even though the competition was far from smooth sailing! The day before while riding Brad, mum did a great job of settling my overthinking brain, so I stopped trying so hard and just felt how Brad needed to go on the flat rather than overthink about it! The following day we went and got our PB at 3* level of 31.5 so last minute nerves were definitely handled. The next day and Show Jumping was upon us, after having walked the cross-country yesterday I was really looking forward to the jumping. While warming up Brad was jumping really well, and I must have become a little complacent because as I came to jump my last spread Brad stopped, and I fell landing on my feet! This was a very sharp reminder to hold up my end of the bargain to provide a decent canter!! Once I had been checked by the doctor (FEI rules), I went in to jump my round. The previous two competitors had there own problems with one falling off and the other demolishing the triple bar, so I was determined to give Brad the best I could. He jumped so well! We came out with no time faults and one pole down due to me twisting in the air, trying too hard to land on the correct canter lead! During the weekend I had also fallen off my bike while playing the fool, so mum said ‘don’t you dare make it a third fall going cross-country!’ Later that day tacked up and ready to go cross-country I realised my air jacket canister hadn’t yet been replaced after it went off during a freak dismounting of a horse cross-country schooling. ( The land yard got caught on the D ring while getting off) I couldn’t be late to the start, so a good friend of ours was tasked with the job of running down to the trade stands, getting the canister replaced and then to meet me up at the cross-country warm up. She arrived very hot and flustered, handed me the air jacket and then went to cool herself in front of the air fans!
The cross-country round was fantastic, he was so sharp and quick I couldn’t fault Brad, we were the 4th quickest horse of the weekend and finished 13th overall. Hartpury did a great job as always the going was superb, and the course had some new elements to it that made it even more exciting. So the moral of this story has to be, be prepared and ready for the event then once you are there, ride on instinct and feel!
Hope you are all having a great season, stay safe and crack on!!
This blog comes courtesy of tweed fashion brand Timothy Foxx www.timothyfoxx.co.uk