Wow. As I write it’s the week after The Europeans and I am still so excited for the British team. I thought they all worked brilliantly together and I would love to be on a team myself soon. Although I was one of 13 riders on the long list with Caja 20, I just felt all along that it was a bit too soon for her. So, our season target, as it stands at the moment, is to make a return to the 8/9 year old Championships at Blenheim and then hopefully Boekelo CCI*** in October.
Our other big target is Burghley with Chance Remark (Austen) which follows a pleasing performance at the Burgham International at the end of July when he finished 11th in a hotly contested CIC3* which was won by Laura Collett and Mr Bass, and in which my grand old servant, Neelix also finished 6th. We also have three five year olds qualified for the Burghley Young Event Horse final so Burghley looks to be set for a busy week!
July and August overall has been non-stop for the team. I even found myself with 9 entries at Somerford last weekend.
Our biggest excitement and major win of the season so far, came at the NAF Five Star International Hartpury Horse Trials earlier in August when we led from the start to take the top spot in the Magic CCI2* with Moonlight Dance S. This was the icing on the cake, having finished a close second only behind Kitty King, in the CIC3* with Neelix only the day before. Dancer put in a superb cross-country, round adding just 0.4 cross country time faults to her dressage mark of 41.6 and finished on a score of 42.0. I was so excited for what – in fact – was my first ever three day event win and the owners, the Sandpiper Syndicate, were also over the moon and it was great that they could be there!
Cavatina Tinkerbelle is another going well. At Aston Le Walls at the end of July, she produced a great double clear to finish 3rd in what was only her third ever intermediate for Chris and Viv Prior. I am thrilled with this little mare who gives you everything.
Tributes for our summer successes should go to my team, including as ever, my Head Groom, Janet, who never stops as well as the home team, all my lovely owners and sponsors including: NAF, Dodson & Horrell, Noble Outfitters, Devoucoux and Charles Owen.