With Graf Liberty the only horse on the big truck (lorry), we shot off to discover our most local event. Anyone who knows Dorset will know there’s a few hills round the place that aren’t suitable for HGV’s and anyone who has followed the instructions of a Tomtom before will know they are very insistent upon taking you down the narrowest country lanes they can find. Tomtom and I were getting on well until he faced us at a lane we simply couldn’t fit down and when I pulled over to scratch my head the gentleman in the car behind knew I was looking for the Portman One Day Event. Little did I know that the gentleman was not gentlemanly at all and in actual fact had quite a sick sense of humor as he gave us directions for the back entrance of the event.
This landed my large truck stuck, smack bang in the middle of the cross country course. Which wouldn’t have been so bad if we hadn’t been parked in the middle of combination 12a and b and holding the start of the cross country up. The ground staff were very helpful and jumped to attention after it was announced on the loud speaker, ‘Could the large red lorry please vacate the cross country course.’ We then had to do a drive of shame down past the show jumping and get a gate unlocked to get into the truck park.
Fortunately Graf Liberty ( Danny) picked my day up quite alot and scored a 26 in his first novice and had a silly rail down show jumping. I then looked even sillier when I decided to run cross country early and beat the imposing rain storm. Danny didn’t appreciate the hail one little bit but luckily the course was put on hold, not lucky for my underpants though which ended up soaking wet. He gave me a sensational ride on course, finished four seconds inside the time and I dismounted just as the sun came out.
The humor didn’t stop there as my listening skills failed me when I asked local navigator big Sam Griffiths for directions home. I ended up taking my 18 tonne truck down the aptly named zigzag hill which I’d just been told to avoid. When I got there I realized why I was meant to avoid it as I had to do 3 point turns in every corner and ended up with a line of cars behind me ten miles long. Fortunately the first car in the queue was a very patient old lady who must have admired my manoeuvre abilities and blew me a kiss when I could finally let her past.
Let’s hope my trip to Weston this weekend, some 4 hours away, is not quite as disastrous.
I’ve ended up so busy lately with all the competing that I’ve found it hard to find the time to blog. Since my last blog I’ve done Aldon, Gatcombe and Somerly Park so here’s a quick round up on how the ponies are going.
Kinnordy Rivaldo and Underdisscussion strutted their stuff in the Advanced Intermediate at Aldon and were in fine form. Both did good dressage tests and show jumped well and I certainly enjoyed giving them a slow run around the nice Intermediate course (What a nice sport this would be if the one day events didn’t have time faults). I also ended up with two pre novice rides at Aldon. A catch ride on Opposition Skylaw and my first run on Graf Liberty owned by yours truly. Skylaw was about as good catch ride as you could end up with. She was a beautiful mare who led the pre novice from start to finish. Graf Liberty didn’t disappoint either, jumping a very scopey double clear and proving to me he’s a proper horse for the future.
We shot off to Gatcombe Advanced Intermediate the following weekend where Haruzac overstepped some boundaries and beat the princess of the stable as Harry and Lani went 1,2. They both did great dressage tests, jumped clear show jumping, and made light work of the cross country. It was a good boost of confidence having those two horses feeling so well.
No sooner had I got my breeches clean I was off to ride, another catch ride in the CIC** at Somerley Park. I’m still astounded at the standard of one day events over here. Turning up to a midweek event I was amazed at how flash it was. Tregoodwell owned by Kirsty and John Johnston, went as well as we could expect given that my relationship with him goes only two rides deep. He jumped double clear and was a nice horse to sit on around a lovely track.
Off to Portman today. Post again soon!