Allens Hill, Hartpury, Moores Farm

Allens Hill Eventer Training is always a really educational day out. They have several of these events a year and I find the Friday ones really useful as it then means I can work over the weekend. This weekend I have clinics at Moores Farm and private lessons at yards in Gloucestershire as well as a baby horse jumping outing to Hartpury (see below)

At Allens Hill Massimo was having his last run before The Young Horse Champs next week, which he qualified for by winning at Chepstow. Extra dressage lessons have paid off and he once again led the dressage with a 28. He was competing in his first 1 m eventing class & the more complex dressage test didn’t phase him at all. He jumped confidently and bold as brass but he had a fair few poles down jumping, mainly it’s because he is big 17 hh and still so weak. I have made sure BS level 3 Coach Emma Slater can fit us in for a jump lesson next week.

Then Saturday baby jumping at Hartpury, I took Sprout who was a bit buzzy by the more busy occasion but he jumped boldly and carefully round. Nikki took Rif Raf and they jumped a super clear in class 1 with just one rail down in the jump off, they looked so fab together. They won a lovely pink Rosette which Hugo quietly chewed on all the way home!!!!


Then it was off to Moores Farm to coach a jumping clinic, I had fab riders in all the groups they rode so well and were lovely to teach. It was a great shame that for various reasons the last group ran late which meant my last rider missed her final jump round. I asked Moores Farms owners if I could have an extra 10 minutes  and I would pay for the extra time, but their time constraints couldn’t allow them to do this as they needed to set the arena up for a dressage show the next day. They are a very busy show centre.  I felt really bad as I never normally run late and so I gave the rider who missed out on her last jump half her money back.

I am clearly far too sensitive as I then couldn’t sleep Saturday night as I felt I hadn’t been able to deliver a good enough coaching session as my one rider didn’t get as much from the lesson as she should have done. Annoying.

Solihull Unaffliiated

Massimo had a good final run before his young horse Champs today at Solihull 90.

He did a super dressage test for a 23.4, one rail SJ and clear XC. He was very bold XC apart from when he greenly hung to the collecting ring after fence 3.

It was a very educational course with his first ever Owl Hole, a big ditch and other interested nicely dressed fences, all of which he flew.


Green & Young Horses

All I seem to be doing at the moment is riding green horses.

4 year old Massimo has been XC schooling today at Lincombe to shake off some rust after his August holiday. He was very bold but also pretty green, but he should get round the British Young Horse Champs with out too many problems.

My recent 3 year old new purchase,the very pretty and very gentle, Blizzard has had a week with Julie and Dave Mansell. They were a bit shocked when I suggested they had her for a week to break in, but I was right in my estimation of her, they had her riding in 48 hours. She is home now and riding greenly but nicely.


3 year old Sprout is now hacking out alone thanks to some help from some excellent baby sitters, Gill Young and Nikki Cox with their nice horses. Today out hacking alone, he was learning all about mud and puddles, he’s very brave with a super want to please attitude.

To finish this post I have some really sad news about Mighty Beetle one of my 2 year olds, he has wobblers syndrome and will have to be put to sleep fairly soon. He is very happy in himself but sways about & falls over for no real reason, becoming a danger to himself and anyone handling him. There is no cure. Very sad.

Hartpury Starts Its Winter Season

Arrived at Hartpury at 8 am for clear round SJ with Sprout and Rif Raf.

Nikki and Rif Raf had a fab day, jumping clear and winning their first clear round rosettes.

This was Sprouts first indoor show and he coped beautifully very chilled and jumped two clear rounds.

Then home to go fetch Massimo and back to Hartpury. Massimo  jumped a double in the 90 cm for 5th and then attempted his first 1 metre class. He jumped bravely and easily with just a couple down. Returned home feeling so pleased with him he is a super horse for the future and a very educational day for all.

See Massimos round here.

Burghley Horse Trials With Louise Harwood

Had an amazing weekend at Burghley Horse Trials being part of the back up team for Louise Harwood.

I love being behind the scenes at a major 3 Day the atmosphere is electric, there is so much to learn and see.


Mr Potts had done a personal 4* best in his dressage and Whitson hadn’t scored quite his normal mark, he went into his shell and didn’t quite have his usual wow factor, he’s very laid back so no one was too concerned.

Mr Potts was awesome XC just pinging and jumping. He was so fresh 3/4 of the way round that at the Discovery Valley he spooked at something on the approach to the fence, this upset his concentration and also his stride pattern resulting in a scramble through the brush. This meant Louise was slightly unseated & couldn’t get to the 2nd part, an annoying 20 penalties. Louise still returned thrilled to bits with him though, she had an amazing ride.

Whitson wasn’t his normal self over some of  the XC fences, he is naturally a laid back chap who needs motivating, Jackies instructions to Louise were to not let him doze off!! Despite Louise’s best efforts Whitson would jump a few fences well, but then creep over one and then jump a few well, then creep over another. Eventually Louise decided to retire him. Back at the stables he was checked over by the veterinary team and Jackie had a blood test taken, it’s not like Whitson to be phased by atmosphere XC so maybe something wasn’t quite right with him.

That evening Whitson’s owners, Roy & Emma, had organised a delicious Barbecue with a selection of meats, dips and salad. It was time to discuss the numerous ups & downs of XC day.

On Sunday Mr Potts SJ really well with just one pole lowered, I stayed to watch Worcestershires local rider Alan Nolan Show Jump. It was his first Burghley and a clear XC is such an amazing result for him as he’s not got a huge team of horses. Alan sells Gain Horse Feeds for a living the same feed used by Louise. I noticed many of the riders at Burghley were feeding Gain Feeds this year.  Then it was home time, I had horses to ride at home although I did manage a teeny bit of Burghely shopping before I left!

imageAlan Nolan waiting to enter the Show Jumping arena.  That horrible nervous moment when you realise a few show jumps lie between you and completing the biggest event of your life!