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27 July 2008 – Hickstead CDI Music time!

The final day and music time! We had never done a competitive music class together until today and its safe to say mum was a little neurotic about it! Its fantastic, she does all the stressing for me so I don't have to! I love doing the music and besides, all you have to do is make sure you are facing the right way on the centre line at the end, right?! The music I chose was all Oasis music and though made for my other horse Chunky, it fits Aristo well.

We had put together a reasonably simple floor plan, as I didn't want to put too much pressure on him for his first one. We were nearly last to go and bar a couple of communication errors, I was thrilled with how relaxed he stayed and how much he trusted me. We managed to just pip into the lead, which I was so thrilled about as a lot of the other combinations have done their music tests on numerous occasions! I really feel that we have grown together at this competition and it's a fantastic start to our competitive career together. I can't wait for what the future will bring, I am so excited! Though not so excited about the six-hour drive home ahead of us...luckily tomorrow is a very well-earned day off for everyone!

25 July 2008 – Hickstead CDI Young Rider Individual

Individual competition. Today we had to ride the Prix St George Test and I was drawn the opposite to yesterday, very early to go in the class! This was actually a bit better for us as it was before it got too hot. We went in and did a better test than the day before; it was clean and secure, though I think I could have asked him for a bit more power. We went into the lead and then all we could do was wait!

As the scores come up when each competitor competes comparing their marks to the leaders, there were some nail biting moments! After a torturous few hours we were victorious again, though this time in the prize giving I think Aristo had a good idea of what was coming next when it was lap of honour time!

24 July 2008 – HIckstead CDI Young Rider Team Test

I was drawn quite late to go in the Young Rider Team test, which meant I could watch the first few go and get a feel for how everything was running. By the time I got on to warm up, it was mid-day and very hot! We produced a good test, though with a couple of green mistakes as our partnership is still very new. this is still only our third competition together! I was pleased that Aristo is starting to trust me in the ring and that we had done a good first test to build on.

I was shocked when Dad came running over to me and told me we had won! We had a lot of fun in the prize giving, Aristo stood perfectly still for the National Anthem and pictures. We had a great lap of honour and I think Aristo was very pleased with himself back in the stable and enjoying his new superstar status. So pleased that he took a nice chunk out of my arm! He was politely reminded his head wasn't to get too large, just yet! We then spent the afternoon basking in the rare English sunshine resulting in some very dodgy tan lines.

23 July 2008 – Hickstead CDI

After a final lesson this morning, we set off to Hickstead with the three amigos on board. It is fantastic that I am allowed to take the young horses with me to give them experience at a huge competition like Hickstead without the pressure of having to compete as well. This also gave me chance to focus on the main event, the Young Rider competition with Aristo.

The trot up was late afternoon and as always, absolute bedlam! I was a little concerned that if Aristo was fresh, I may well be doing some sand skiing across the collecting arena! Fortunately for me though, he behaved impeccably and there were a few comments made about his type and class that I was thoroughly pleased about, as this was the first time many people, including selectors and judges had seen him. I then rode the young horses; Feine Dame was a bit of a handful though some foreigners who desperately want to buy her did approach us! Sunny was a star as his eyes were out on stalks for most of the time I was riding him and he was thoroughly (though genuinely) frightened of everything!

17 July 2008 – Training

Today mum and I travelled down south to Emile Faurie's Yard near Chipping Norton. I am staying down here to train until Wednesday, when we are off to Hickstead CDI to compete in the Young Rider Section of the International. Emile is away until Saturday but my parents also go away for the weekend so without coming down a bit early, I wouldn't be able to get any transport! I must hurry up and get my HGV done! They are going out to their good friend, Duncan Bannatyne's villa in the south of France. Apparently there is a big party on Sunday night with a celebrity guest list. My invite must have got lost in the post?!! Anyway, I brought Feine Dame, Sunny and Aristo with me for the week's training though only Aristo is competing at Hickstead

14 July 2008 – Training

Aristo was FANTASTIC today! Everything seemed to come together and I got such a huge buzz from managing to harness the power and beauty that this horse can produce, this is what dressage is about! I just hope we haven't peaked too early in the week. Feine Dame was good in her lesson today too, we are still working on the basics, but as soon as we get that cracked, this horse gives the feeling that the sky is the limit! Oh and Sunny was spot on today too. Feeling very positive!

News Archive

Latest results

  • Feine Dame: 1st / 69.45
  • Divine: 1st / 72%
  • Aristo: 4th, 6th, 4th / 70.4% (music Final)
  • Aristo: 2nd overall / 72.9 + 70%
  • Show Boy: 1st / 68.92%
  • Feine Dame: 1st / 68.88%
  • Feine Dame: 1st / 72.07%
  • Show Boy: 1st / 71.47%
  • Aristo: 1st / 70.38%
  • Show Boy: 1st / 72.8%

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