Back to the babies with a young horse day at Smiths Lawn on Tuesday and they are generally allot more physically challenging than the advanced horses! This year Smiths Lawn finally allocated the dressage to the polo fields which was nice as normally we drive past the luscious green strips and then trot around in some dust out back. The play off of this improvement was the showjumping which was held in what can only be described as a challengingly small arena with some bumps and undulations thrown in. Generally the steering on young horses is akin to a Series 1 Land Rover so a nice big arena with a smooth surface is helpful!
Jonelle and C’est Le Belle ( Straight translation… ‘It’s Belle’, definitely better in French!) breezed through their 100 with a 31 dressage which they added nothing to to finish 2nd. Belle is a good jumper and there were not very many clears in the showjumping so that helped allot!
Totally Cooley is still finding his balance and after dealing with a 20m x 40m grass arena he found the tight turns in the showjumping as well as the lumps and bumps quite a big deal! He did well to survive with just a couple of rails and found the cross country much more straightforward than he did at Dauntsey so definitely progress.
Tim had the lovely Delarado (Darcey) in the 100 and a flashy 23 dressage was followed up by a double clear. Adding 4 time meant the runner up slot but Tim described her as “really quite fun” cross country which Tim rarely gets to say about his young horses…over the years the comments have generally been unprintable about some of his baby rides!
Kilbunny Lualaba may be saddled with a roadkill name but Lilly, as she is known at home, is a big young horse making her eventing debut and as we all know, that can go West at any point in the day! The dressage warm up looked a bit bouncy but then Lilly knuckled down for a nice test and then tried really hard in the jumping phases to go double clear. Tim said she actually felt cross country like it was her 4th time out, not her first so he really did have a nice day!
Jonelle still had Faerie Magnifico (George) in the novice for his first run back since his win out in Arville and while she was knocking out a 24 dressage Tim donned his Marigolds and decided to get to work on a truck living deep clean. Clearly relishing the fact that Jonelle had more rides than him for once he made the most of his spare time by giving their “home away from home” ( his words, not mine, he seems to have gone all Martha Stewart with a couple of hours to kill) a good reorganise and dust down. Jonelle continued bringing home the bacon with another win as she and George took out the red rosette in their novice section to continue the blinding run the Price’s are on at the moment.
Young horse days rarely go so smoothy.. a win and a couple of seconds, first timers going double clear….it looks like it just happens but it really does take a village! There are lots of early morning trips to Rectory Farm, Boomerang cross country schooling, the “kids” educating them on drama filled hacks past logging sites and the spooky farmyard and they all add up to a good day at an event.
Aston Le Walls on Thursday with the intermediates before a trip to Hartpury for Tim for the CI4*S with two of his Burghley boys, Bango and Ringwood Sky Boy.