Heavy overnight rain changed the course conditions quite allot and Jonelle said that the footing on the racecourse in particular was soft and holding. She also noted that this was quite a grown up XC track for Lignieres and was a tougher test than usual with the 3L horses really having to step up to the plate.
First up for Jonelle was Curly Girl and she got a bit of a fright at the big elephant trap fence over the ditch at fence 3 ( which the 4* horses also jumped) and that was followed up by two skinnies with a 90 degree bend with the second one set on an angle over another ditch. Curly did make it to the landing side but Jonelle said it was bit of a close call! Curly is a gutsy brave girl and her answer when things get tough is to rather run at the fences and hurl herself into the air which is not always the wisest option when you are jumping through combinations but it is admirable never the less! They had another moment at the last water when Curly over jumped the in, didn’t quite land it, went down on her knees for a few strides before gamely jumping the corner out. Thats real hard core stuff. Jonelle described it as a “quite adventurous round” with her general understatement but it really has been a big leap into the unknown for Curly this week and she has certainly proved her place on Jonelle’s team. 12 time dropped them some way down the order but she can hold her head up high tonight.
Next out was Killbunny Andy and he has a little more experience under his belt having already done a 3L with his previous rider. He also looked at fence 3 with a bit of trepidation but he is a proper working lad and he came home clear in time to end the day in 7th place, less than 5 points off the lead. Jonelle was really happy with him too.
Wee Faerie Magnifico ( George) is probably the least experienced of Jonelle’s trio but she said he too was awesome! The ground was cutting up quite considerably by his turn but he is so small and light and athletic and she said he skipped across the top of it in a super rhythm. He has always been a good cross country horse but he really did step up today as he has only had a 2L at Haras du Pin and a couple of intermediate runs to prepare him.
Diamante (Monte) was just showjumping today in her 2S and she left all the poles up for a great first international debut. 2 seconds over time dropped her a couple of places to 8th but she remains in the top 10 overnight.
Tim had a long morning to mull over his options and he decided to re route Spartaco to hopefully better ground at Kronenberg in a couple of weeks. Sparty has answered every question that has been asked of him this year and he really didn’t have the heart to ask him to another step up in track with holding ground.
Which just left Falco for him and he had a long old wait to start him watching the ground go dead. Falco has had his moments and it really was a true test for him as it was a tough track and you had to dig deep to get the job done. He more than dug deep, he went beyond that to attack the track with Tim for a great round and came home adding just 2 time to sit in 7th spot overnight and has taken another step in proving himself a worthy part of Tim’s string.
So quite the day in Lignières and a good troop of ponies all ready for their last day of competition for 2020. Except Sparty of course who is probably thinking going out to France for some dressage is pretty cool!