An early start for the team and a trip up North to Cheshire for one of the traditional ‘grown up’ events of the season. Somerford is usually where the autumn three day event horses come back out for a play around the OI and this year was no exception….apart from the fact that Tim said the horses all felt a bit like horses that they hadn’t been around for a while!
Somerford has nice dressage arenas and a huge all weather showjumping which usually makes for technical tracks that Tim described as quite “intense” to jump. The cross country is an old fashioned rolling one that makes as much use of the terrain as it can and young horses grow up here whilst the older ones enjoy the chance to get going.
Jonelle’s first ride of the day was with Classic Moet (Molly) and that is always guaranteed to put a smile on her face. Molly certainly impressed the judge with a 21.8 and she jumped what Jonelle described as a “super” showjumping round, just catching a back rail when she went a bit too high at an oxer. Cross country was less fluent than usual when Molly pulled a front shoe and Jonelle was forced to slow down and look after her balance and Molly wouldn’t be one that would enjoy the barefoot experience so picked up some 9 time. Jonelle was still saying how ‘cool’ she was though, her cross country runs are few and far between so it’s great that they both love it so much.
Faerie Magnifico (George) and McClaren are both pretty small guys with big attitudes. They went head to head in their section which was presumably why George got his mojo back in the dressage and scored a 26.6 which was enough to pip Mac on a 27.1. George is generally a pretty grumpy chap and Mac is capable of some ferocious ears flat back looks but he is very much a lad who loves to be the centre of attention. They both showjumped clear although George did pick up a time fault and then they both jumped lovely rounds cross country finishing in 9th and 10th so great outings for both of them. New boy Coup de Cour Dudevin (Joker) continues to impress and a 28 dressage and a double clear furthered his partnership with Jonelle and finished up a good day for her with all of her crew.
Tim’s horses were all on form as well with Xavier Faer (Hugo) scoring a 25.7, Ringwood Sky Boy (Ozzie) a 26.1 and Falco a 25.5. These are really experienced horses all heading for 5 stars this autumn and whilst Falco went double clear with 2.8 time for 4th spot Hugo wasn’t far off the pace with the same time faults cross country but a rail to add for 6th. Ozzie picked up 8 jumping so went cross country slightly slower to pick up 9.2 and breeze through the finish enjoying his job as much as ever.
Through no fault of his own Chio 20 found himself in an OI section instead of an intermediate but went brilliantly to finish up in 2nd place against the advanced boys. Considering he still is in novice points that is quite impressive! Le Lion d’Angers beckons and he looks to be very competitive with results like this coming in.
Spartaco (Sparty) is owned by Tim and Jonelle so Tim has the luxury of of being able to do whatever he wants with him. A 34 on the flat is not a true reflection of the smart dressage Sparty has been producing this spring and a rail showjumping added to that meant that Tim decided to school the cross country and added a couple of circles where he felt appropriate. This added 40 jumping to the score but Sparty has no idea that he was picking up technical faults, he just thought it was some added he and Tim time!
Two proper babies for Jonelle tomorrow whilst Tim has 4 with varying degrees of experience. And then the very rare prospect of a Sunday off!