Saturday, 27 May 2017

April/May/June 2017

Gorgeous Alfie learning how to sit down behind a bit more in his piaffe on a fantastic two days training with International Olympic judge Stephen Clarke at the TTT (Training the Teachers of Tomorrow) in Guildford.

Jo Billing and Trafalger had an amazing (and intense!) time at their first ever NAF Five Star BD Winter champs at Hartpury for the Novice Silver Freestyle. They have both worked really hard after their second place at the Regionals. A new walk trot and canter have evolved. Only problem is -  due to the extra ground cover in the walk, more suspension and reach in the trot and more straightness and jump in the canter, will the paces still fit the music?!. Thankfully yes as I love the music Jo put together.
Jo said afterwards "That arena is the spookiest and scariest I have ever ridden in and despite two arena walks to acclimatise him, Rhubarb just couldn't cope. Apologies to the poor people I span, leaped at and jumped on during that time... the stewards were having kittens and telling people to avoid the girl on the grey! Never known nerves like it, I seriously thought I wouldn't even get in the arena and almost withdrew. But I got in there with Tracey May Dressage's words of wisdom in my ears (yes they included a few expletives!!!) and only bloody did it. It was tense with a few blips but finished with a score of 67.3%. So proud of this little horse who thought he should have been a Lipizzaner!"
Well done Jo!!!

I am so so so happy. Sophie Watkins and Inca Spirit won the Under 18 Elementary Class at Wellington Area Festival with a fabulous 68.14%!!! They are now qualified for the Area Festival Final in September. It can take a good year to get to know a new young horse and this combination are now working together beautifully as 'one'. There are so many things to work through in that first year. Every season it could be like getting to know a new horse, what do you feed them in spring compared to winter. Do you need to lunge at home before taking a young horse out in winter weather or can you just hop straight on. How long do you warm up for depending on the venue/weather. So much to learn for the rest of our lives together but especially in your first year together. So if your ever struggling, just look at these beautiful photos of Inca and Sophie. Good guidance and perseverance and you will get there too.

A very clever Donna Lockhart and Barney were Reserve Champions in the Wellington Area Festival Prelim Class. I still remember my first lesson with Donna and Barney. What a super job they have done improving to get such a super BD record. And they both still have many tricks up their sleeve to be shown yet. Barney will now happily play in the walk and trot work at Elementary/Medium level and Donna is gently nibbling away at bringing the canter up to this level too. 

Alfie bear is going so well at the moment. I'm a very very lucky girl to have such a willing enthusiastic dance partner.

I had many happy years training Eilean Appleton before she moved out of the area so she could have the ponies in the back garden. Miss her and Spotty so much as we had great fun as well as seriously on a BD mission. I love it when old clients keep in touch when they move as I only train riders that I love/like/respect/enjoy. This is Eilean and Shakira looking fab at the Elementary Area Festival Championships at Hartpury.

Nicky Reynolds and Indi came 3rd in the Novice at the Wellington Championships! And 2nd in the Music! I don't get to see Nicky as often as I would like to as I struggle with time to get out to yards if there is only one person there having a lesson. Gemma Litchfield trains Nicky on a regular basis and I just pop in whenever I can when I'm in the area. Nicky won my heart many years ago and I will always somehow find the time for this very special, beautiful 'inside and out' young lady. I'm seeing her this week to dance her way round an Elementary. Have your Weetabix Indi!

This is me on my very gorgeous baby pony QT!