An early trek up the centre line for Gurtera Jimmy Clover and Tim as the 3*L kicked off proceedings at Millstreet. Wednesday had seen some sunshine but it was cool and cloudy on Thursday which is not unexpected in Ireland and why so many riders make the journey over for the super ground that this climate gives us.
Jimmy is transitioning from an intermediate horse into an advanced horse (now he has a commendable 76 odd BE points) and the 3 star test is well within his comfort zone. All he lacks for the step up into the 70% bracket is a little more softness and suppleness. He has a work ethic to die for, is a sensible chap and really wants to do his best and a score of 32 to lie 17th out of 51 is a testament to his good nature and his relationship with Tim.
Jonelle and Faerie Dianimo (Maggie May) were 4th in for the 4*S in the afternoon and rarely have we seen such an unimpressed trio of judges. No one in the class broke the 70% barrier and they covered the 27 competitors by 12 marks. Maggie May actually did one of her ‘nearly very good’ tests with some good medium trots, a seriously impressive extended trot, uphill and engaged canter work and a perfect final halt. Yes, she lost rhythm in the walk pirouettes, her extended walk lacked a little ground cover and her changes contained small mistakes but the quality of the changes really didn’t warrant a score of 2 for both from the judge at C. Jonelle was sanguine about the score ( she is possibly not as biased as me!) but we were not the only ones to be pretty surprised at it.
On the plus side the fact that Maggie May left her atrocious behaviour at the one day tests behind her bodes well for Luhmuhlen which is what she is here for.
The 4L and 2L horses jogged after 6pm and with 5 to get ready the ground team did another amazing job. For Tim, Happy Boy and Coup de Coeur Dudevin (Joker) and for Jonelle, Killbunny Andy in the 4L and then Fernhill Kankan and Full Monte de Lacense (FM) in the 2L. Kankan is back in her native Ireland for her first three day and FM did the 2*S out at Ligniere last year but this is his first long format as well.
Tomorrow sees Jonelle and FM at 11.06 and Kankan at 2.47. Then Tim and Happy at 4.11, Jonelle and Andy at 5.22, Tim and Joker at 7.19. Proper long days!
Livestream and all results and times on the very good Millstreet website.