Hope I don’t bore you to death with this one, but I have to tell you about the love of my life, who happens to be a dark brown gelding called Newsprint or Barry to us.
Barry showed, once again what a cross country machine he is, when he made the time around the very tough, very steep course in the British open championships at Gatcombe on the weekend. This class is famous for being hard to make the time and each year only a few make it. I rode in the advanced class here in 2004 and have always wanted to come back with a horse like Newsprint and give it a go.
He did a beautiful relaxed test and even did his flying changes clean and on the markers, the one chink in his armour, that movement.
I had one down in the show jumping and it was all my fault. I was so angry with myself for letting him down, he always wants to try to please in this Phase by jumping a clear round. (Sorry Baz).
Because I know him so well, he is such a pleasure for me to ride on course these days. I don’t need to use the reins I don’t need to use my legs I just think it and it’s like he can hear me. I don’t even know why I wear spurs on him. He is such a freak galloper that when I thought he was tired near the end of the course, he thought I meant go faster and shot off after the 3rd last fence and found an extra gear, quite amazing! I had to slow him down though because we had done more than enough to make the time and we were able to slowly canter the last few fences to finish the day in 5th place.