'Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in & day out.'
This quote couldn't be more apt to the work I have put in this winter with Lily, and the outcome of our first event this weekend. It is such a nice feeling when you know both the horse and yourself are on great form and you go out and prove it, definitely a sense of satisfaction!
She warmed up beautifully for the dressage, and I got some really nice medium trot so hoping to start getting it in the arena too. However we were only doing a BE100 test so no medium trot in the test. Once she got into the arena she was a little more tense and therefore I didn't have her in to the rein as much as I would have liked, however she still performed an obedient and accurate test which was rewarded with a score of 28, the second best score of the section.
She found the show-jumping rather easy and just skipped round for a lovely, confident clear and is more than ready to start jumping some bigger tracks as she is currently finding it all much too easy! Our dressage score was read out at the end of the show-jumping round and I was delighted, so knew with a good cross-country run we were in with a chance. Luckily Mum went and checked the scoreboard and found very few were getting time penalties, and plenty of people were getting them for going too fast! So the plan was to go out in a good rhythm and maintain that to give her a good ride.
She gave me the most awesome feeling, and absolutely loved it! She was quite excited before we entered the start box and was almost napping back to the other horses, however as soon as I was counted down and walked into the start box, she jumped out with enthusiasm and pulled me the whole way round the course! Well with the minor exception of the stretch between the water at fence 10 and fence 11, where she spooked violently sideways, first at the BE80 jump on one side, then the BE90 fence on the other, but luckily I regained her attention before she popped fence 11 in great style (See picture below). The course asked enough questions for a first run of the season - you can see them on the fantastic Shoestring Eventing Course Pictures with a double of corners, a couple of skinny combinations and a nice water complex. I obviously got my rhythm spot on as we finished 5 seconds inside the time and on our dressage score which left us in 2nd place, just 0.2 behind the winner.
Thank you to groom and lorry driver aka supermum who not only helps all day and has even got rather good at videoing with all the practice I give her, but then drove the lorry and Lily home whilst I went on to Warwick to see the boyfriend! Another big thanks to Jenny Wijsmuller for coming and supporting and also to Charles who Jenny seemed to drag with her, but at least it was a lovely warm and sunny day!!
To see the video CLICK HERE
It is so exciting to have Lily on the form of her life, so we are heading to Littleton Manor for an Arena Eventing qualifier next Saturday, followed by dressage at Pachesham on Sunday. What is even more exciting is that Coco is going to join the party after 10 months out, think I may need my superglue! Lily's next event is Aldon BE100open on the 20th March!