With May and June being the wettest on record it is not surprising that every horse has had its competition schedule changed. We have gone from full turn out, to daily only, to no turn out and back again. Our washing machine supplied to us by Fowler UK Laundry Equipment has been on full time trying to get rid of the mud and we are generally getting through 2 sets of clothes a day!!! Having said this all the horses are going really well and seem to be coping very well with their ever changing routine!
Jenny Waaler’s Inonothing (Mannie) as many of you know made the trip to Germany to compete in Luhmuhlen CCI****. This event saw the biggest numbers it has ever had due to the cancellation of Badminton. It ran over a fairly similar track to the 2011 European Championships. Mannie produced a solid dressage for a mark of 45. He then had an almost flawless XC round but unfortunately he pecked on landing in the last water jump which resulted in Paul making a snap decision to opt for the longer route incurring no jumping penalties but some unavoidable time penalties. That evening it was apparent that ‘the peck’ in water jump also gave Mannie a slight muscular injury to his right arm pit and he was really uncomfortable. He did trot up sound the next day and amazingly pulled off a clear show jumping leaving everybody male and female, close connections and admirers in various states of emotion. He has had so many comments from all over saying how amazing he is and that he really is one of the greats. What is lovely is that although we are all aware how special he is, he has no idea and I’m sure just thinks he is doing his day job to help out his partner in crime Paul! Mannie has had two weeks off and is due to come back into work this week.
Captain Fred and Penny Barker, Vicki Mace-Benson’s and Georgina Tapner’s Wickstead Didgeridoo (Balloo) has been enjoying a holiday after a fantastic run in Saumur CCI*** where he pulled of a good dressage and an awesome XC round that was certainly noticed by many. He then unfortunately felt a little tired on the final day to roll 3 poles to finish a very creditable 14th place in a fairly strong class with lots of Badminton and Chatsworth refugees. Balloo has been back in work a couple of weeks and starts competing again in July.
Captain Fred and Penny Barker’s Kilronan (Tom) also headed to Saumur CCI*** with stable mate Balloo and produced a good dressage and a great XC round showing how confident he is becoming at this level. Unfortunately the next day didn’t quite go to plan and the desired clear show jumping round eluded Tom who still finished in the prize money in 13th place, a very good final placing in a tough class but there was a question mark hanging over why he kept becoming so tense in his work which was preventing him finding the winning form he had last season. Some good investigative work from our vet Hattie Lawrence has found some veterinary issues that hopefully can now be managed better and shown that the poor boy has been in some pain during 2012. This makes his results this year even more special as it shows what a great horse Tom is to try when clearly he was so uncomfortable. He has had some time off following Saumur but is now back in work and enjoyed an outing at Barbury where he jumped in the Olympic combined training and produced 2 very good confident looking show jumping rounds.
Peter and Libby Saugman’s Caicos (Cai) has enjoyed being back out competing he had a nice easy run round an OI at Pontispool to get him back in to the swing of things again. Cai then joined Mannie heading out to Luhmulhen to compete in the CIC*** this is his first attempt at this level. Paul was very happy with his dressage. He produced a test to the highest level that he is capable of. Cai then looked very confident XC but unfortunately got a little strong at the end so Paul was forced to take a long route. Cai then had to trot up and show jump the following day and he produced a foot perfect show jumping round proving he really is a horse to watch in the future. Cai then went on to Barbury CIC*** where he did a good dressage but was a little tense with it being so close to the novice XC. In the show jumping he was truly spectacular and really turned some heads with his clear. For the XC we had a change of bit which seemed to sort the brakes out, soPaul was able to really put his foot down for the first half of the course making it look easy, unfortunately Cai extra bit of speed combined with the hills of Barbury all a little too physically demanding and began to tire, so Paul had to nurse him home in the later half of the course for some time penalties which pushed him down the order, but Cai will be a much stronger athlete from the experience.
Sally and Colm McGinn’s Indian Mill (Monkee) is becoming the goody two shoes of the yard and really showing everybody what a special little horse he is! He ran at Pontispool intermediate producing a solid performance in all three phases to finish in 3rd place. Monkee then went on to Salperton intermediate and managed to secure another WIN making Monkee’s tally this season 4 WINS out of 6 runs!! Pretty impressive! He then went to Barbury and stepped up a level to do a CIC** and on arriving we realised that his section had half the British Olympic team in it! However, Monkee held his own in the dressage scoring 44.2 even with a playful medium canter which that left him in =5 over night. Monkee produced a beautiful clear in the show jumping looking very classy and then stormed round the XC to finish in 2nd place beating all of the Olympic horses!! Kitty King won on Persimmon who is the same age as Monkee and I suspect that these two horses are going to be exciting to watch in the future, as they will keep meeting in competition often and at this stage seem to be in a class all of their own.
Angela Scott’s Carlito (Carlo) is well and truly back in the swing of things now and is very much enjoying himself. I have never known a horse bounce around with a smile from ear to ear as much as him unfortunately sometimes he can bounce a little too much and this can cause control issues for Paul resulting in 20 penalties on XC and over exuberant dressage tests! However, he has finished this month excelling himself in the CIC** at Barbury.Carlo unfortunately got his tongue over the bit in the dressage so the mark was not good as we had hoped for, but before this, produced some of the nicest work we have ever seen. He jumped a lovely clear in the show jumping and stormed around the XC withPaul having two reins, one for when he bounces and one for when he gets strong and it seemed to work well. Carlo didn’t finish in a top place but we feel we have come forward with him leaps and bounds.
Robbie and Mandy Burns’ Yogi Bear (Yogi) had one run at Aston Le walls where he was the star of the lorry! He produced a good dressage, rolled one pole show jumping but really showed his experience at storming round the XC in the 2nd fastest time of the day to give a final 2nd place. Yogi is now enjoying a holiday and will come back in again to campaign in August before he goes hunting again with Mandy.
George and Jean Tapner’s Pioneer Milly (Milly) joined the team a couple of months ago and has been competing in dressage and show jumping by Georgina while Lara was off work. Milly had aWIN at elementary level dressage with Georgina and also came 5thin the BE100 combined training at West Wilts. Paul will now take over the reins when Milly starts her eventing career with us during July.
Jane Gwillim-David’s Supreme Watts (Dai) is now very settled at intermediate level having had gradually improving results in all three phases in the 3 intermediate starts he has had during May and June. Dai has been storming round all the XC courses making it look easy. His last run at Salperton left him in 8th place and he is now ready to step up to the next level of CIC** which he will do at Somerford Park in August.
Jenny Waaler’s Boomerang (Boo) continues to be the problem child of the team! He is very talented but spends a lot of his time thinking up new tricks to keep Paul on his toes!! His antics got him the big E in the show jumping at Stonar in the BE100 after we all had begun to think that we had finally got his show jumping likely to be a clear.
Ian Murray’s Inishmor (Hamish) had his last run at BE100 at Aston le walls where Hamish produced very good results in all phases and finished in 2nd place showing he is well and truly ready to move up to novice. His first Novice outing was at Pontispool where an arrowhead caught him out on the testing XC course.Hamish next ran at Barbury which is a very big novice track for a green horse but he coped really well and was impressive in all three phases to finish in 8th place out of large field of 40+ horses!
Georgina Tapner’s Wickstead Ulara (Lara) has had an interesting couple of months! Georgina had decided that Lara was throwing far too many complications at her so she handed the reins over toPaul to see if he could ‘tame’ the wild beast!! But with her behaviour worsening, Lara had some investigative work from our vet, Hattie Lawrence. It was found that Lara had some problems in her reproductive area and with a minor operation we’re very happy to have her ride-able and much more sane again, soGeorgina has taken back the ride! Lara went to Stonar Open BE100 for 10th place and then onto Barbury Novice, where despite a lovely double clear, the dreaded big E was on the scoreboard due to a missed fence on XC.
Paul and Georgina Tapner’s Wickstead Hermione and Wickstead Octavia have done a lot of growing up this month and have made their first appearance to competition life. They both went to Stonar BE90 4 year old class. Hermione is slightly more experienced and she showed it by producing a good dressage and a very impressive double clear finishing in 3rd place. Octavia was a little shell shocked so lowered a few rails show jumping and had a run out XC. She really grow up a lot on this outing. They then went to Barbury to compete in the BYEH 4 year old class where they both performed really well. These two are for sale, so if you hear of anybody looking to become involved in our team as an owner then please let us know, as we would like to keep them on the team.
Rowan Collins and her own Uno have started to settle well into BE now and each time are looking more and more confident.