What an Olympics we had.. Record breaking on the Medals front, Record breaking on the horse medals front and a truly great games. As Seb Coe said, 'When our time came - Britain we did it right, Thank you!' And I believe this was the best games ever and provides the Greatest Show On Earth. Charlotte and Valegro didn;t disappoint, and what a result for our Showjumpers. Team Gold was never on the cards but just goes to show that on the day anything can happen. I have to say when it finished I didn't know what to do with my life, it felt so empty. I think the horses were pleased to start getting some proper attention though!!
With the Paralympics so close I would love to introduce you to our long time family friend Lee Frawley, who with her leased horse Rhapsody is competing for the US Virgin Islands in the Para Dressage. She was featured in last weeks Horse and Hound, check out her website here; http://www.leefrawley.com .. She has worked so hard for this so Good Luck Lee & Rhaps .. were all supporting you!
Now onto goings on with my horses. Pony Club Areas didn't entirely go to plan unfortunately. A good dressage of 35 and a clear showjumping round was ruined by my slight inexperience and lack of match practice with Ozzie. I started too quickly and due to worrying about the time I didn't set him up for the second fence resulting in us both hitting the deck. My air jacket was fantastic and I was able to walk away unhurt, but upset that I had been the cause of the problem. Ozzie was also able to get up, but had a cut on his coronet band which is healing nicely and I'm back riding him. But lesson learnt and that won't ever happen again. He has had to be in quite a lot but Simple System have suggested various products such as Lucie Brix to keep him happy, and they also recommended Lucie - mints if he wouldn't eat his feed, thankfully he did.
Our next outing was Felbridge Combined Training with Lily and Punch in the BE100 and Coco in the Novice. Punch did a rather flat test as he found it a bit warm for a slightly harsh 36.5, Lily was feeling rather sprightly and bounced round the arena but still got away with a 36.5!! They both jumped clear and finished equal 6th so really pleased. Coco was also good, I found the small arena on grass with Novice BE movements rather tricky but the test improved throughout. He then just had one pole down so finished just out of the placings but a great run.
Then onto Borde Hill last Sunday. The weather was rather warm, I had Lily in the BE90 and Coco in the BE100. Lily did a better test, but still much to improve on, however she still managed to get a 29 by pricking her ears and looking pretty! She then jumped a fantastic clear show jumping. Cross country although still a little sticky at times was generally much better round a course which gave her many opportunities to hang towards home and she didn't once. So really thrilled with her and to finish off, she won.. Very proud mummy (: Onto Coco and he was a little wobbly in the dressage but worked in fantastically so I was pleased with a score of 33. He then just rolled the second fence for 4 penalties but popped round the cross country confidently and easily to finish on 37, good enough for 4th place so I was really pleased.
This weekend we headed to Firle Place International for two days of eventing. Lily was first up on the Saturday in the BE90. She did a really good test, but just made a couple of mistakes so 35.5 was a little harsh but fine. Another great clear show jumping, which her old owner Brian Lear got to see which was nice. The Cross country was really a tough ask and she went really well and was improved again. Unfortunately we picked up an unlucky 20 penalties coming out of the water as she missed the step out due to the striding in the water and the fence after was a curving table which was slightly angled to help, but I had little contact and she just couldn't work out the question being asked in time, which was a real shame as she didn't really stop, she just didn't jump! But I was really proud as in 1 section 9 horses were eliminated cross country and another 8 had penalties, so she did really well and is improving all the time.
We were back on Sunday with Coco and Punch. Coco and I were doing our first Novice together and his dressage was a massive step forwards, relaxed and flowing. He has been so much more settled since we got him, partly from the way we are working but I think a lot to do with the fact he is getting a very high quality fibre diet in the form of Greengold from Simple System. I went wrong and he still got a 34.5. Our mediums still need a lot of work but if we can get them we will be away! He then topped it off with a double clear adding just 2 time faults cross country. But he cruised round for fun and I had so much fun. I feel so lucky to have been bought such a fantastic horse. He finished 7th in the Open Novice in the end so I was really pleased.
Punch had a lot to live up to, but he managed to pull out all the stops in the dressage and do a really fantastic, uphill, settled test. The judge had no choice but to give him the marks and he ended up with a 29. He topped this off with a double clear and inside the time to finish 2nd by just 0.5 of a penalty which was a shame as he deserved the win but so pleased with the form he is on at the moment. He even made up for jumping on and then refusing to move off my foot before the show jumping!
All in all it has been a very busy but successful few weeks and hopefully it will carry on throughout the end of the season. We have got the Pony Club Eventers Challenge hopefully with Ozzie and then Purston with Punch and Coco and BCA with Lily so we shall see! All very busy here with my Pony Club AH Test looming on the 5th September! Enough Waffling from me but a couple of pictures are attached from Firle
Thanks for reading
Georgie and the Team
Well we are on a role - we are flying along at the Olympics in London with a well earnt and won Silver in the eventing, I have no doubts that we didn't lose Gold but in fact won the Silver. And how about the Athletics and Super Saturday - 3 Golds for Jess Ennis, Greg Rutherford and Mo Farah. I have so much respect for these people, the way they conducted themselves and the way the performed under huge pressure, it really was inspiring. Also congratulations must go to Wiggo for his time trial win, Andy Murray for our first tennis Gold in 104 years, Ben Ainslie for showing them how its done, the gymnasts, the cyclists dominating on the track and the rowers with their 9 medals. I think it is fair to say that Britain really are performing! Fingers crossed for both the dressage and show jumping over the next week. I will be at Greenwich cheering on our Dressage team on Tuesday, so fingers tightly crossed.
I was lucky enough to see both dressage days and the show jumping day of the Olympic Eventing and I have to say I have never got so nervous watching, ever! But didn't the Brits pull it put the bag. Seeing it has made me even more determined to get there as it was truly a fantastic experience and this has cemented the fact that really this is what I want to do.
Anyway, enough Olympic fever for one report, back to my horses. This weekend we had 3 at Chilham Park Horse Trials. We hadn't been for a number of years and it was a really lovely event, friendly, decent educational tracks, plenty of space and helpful officials, what more could you want, sun maybe? Well we even got that too!!
I had Punch and Lily in the BE90 on Saturday and Coco in the BE100 on Sunday.
Lily was the first to go on Saturday and I hadn't been able to school her on Friday night as she had been playing games with the others in the field. Luckily mum was quickly able to put it right ready to go on Saturday. She warmed up really well. She went into the test and was a little inconsistent but the work itself is much better, she is working off my leg. She got a 33.5 which I was really pleased with considering there were a couple of mistakes. On to the show jumping and it was rather on the small side, but she popped round happily and neatly for a clear. Onto the cross country and I was nervous as it was the first one I had done since Tweseldown and the first new venue I had been to since Larkhill!! I needn't have been worried as although she started off a little sticky she got going and jumped through all the direct routes with her ears pricked over a tough course which caused plenty of problems. So a huge step in the right direction.
Punch was next up and had a pretty tough act to follow really but he was up for the challenge. I got a bit tense just before my test which caused him to get a bit tense but a few instructions from mum and I settled down. He did a foot perfect test apart from my two trot canter transitions which I am working on, and is more to do with me than him. The result was a slightly disappointing 32, however he went well so I can't be too upset. Onto the show jumping and he pinged round making it feel ridiculously small which was really nice, as he felt so confident. Then the fun bit and Punch flew round taking it all in his stride, and there is video of it all to follow. He finished on his dressage of 32 but this was only good enough for 7th whilst Lily finished 12th, so a really good outing.
Then back today for Cocos turn and our first event together and only our second competition together. I was most nervous before the dressage as he was a little bit tense and wasn't taking the contact forwards as much as I would like. Since we have had him on Simple System feed we have been able to take him off the calmer and he has been so chilled, so a huge thanks to them for all their help getting him settled and onto the most suitable diet, as it is really suiting him. I managed to do my second circle in the wrong place, the judge didn't notice and I got an 8 for it, oh well! The test was a little inconsistent at times but he tries really hard and is so elegant that the judges really like him. The result was a 29, so very pleased. Onto the show jumping and the course again was on the small side which wasn't a disaster for our first one, but we had the smallest fence on the course down as Coco felt insulted that he was really being asked to jump so small! Then cross country time, and apart from a few deep strides and being a little bit tappy he skipped round and finished barely blowing. So what a great start. Once we got to the score board we saw that I had finished one second inside the time, how well judged was that! The result was he had the equal best dressage and finished 3rd, he would have won if we finished on our dressage but not bad for our first go!
Not to forget about Ozzie, he came along today for an outing to practice his dressage before pony club areas on Thursday. He went brilliantly so I am really hoping that we may be in with a chance of
A fantastic weekend and a fantastic event, thank you to the organisers and everyone who made it run so smoothly.
Thats all for now,