The crowd on Thursday was enthusiastic but the Sunday night audience were truly invested in the spirit of the indoor cross country! It was a packed house and they really got behind the riders which makes for a huge atmosphere.
Tim had made big steps forward with his ride, Celladonn, and as second in to go they didn’t have much info on the track they were facing. On top of the spooky black water that had been their undoing on Thursday they now had a proper water jump to pop in and out of which was a couple of strides long. The horses are usually allowed a bit of a practise at this as its an odd thing to find in the middle of an indoor but you still can’t guarantee anything!
Celladonn started off much more forward and much less wary than Thursday which was looking good but they still had a couple of moments, much to the delight of the crowd, who pay quite handsomely for the chance to see a famous rider face plant in the main arena. Celladonn came off the bank quite steeply which pitched Tim forward and they almost went separate ways in a very tight turn which coincided with a jump but it was a far more polished performance and the final leap over the spooky black water was evidence of just what Tim can do in a couple of days!
It was still only good enough for 8th spot though…6 seconds added for a flag and a knock down was a killer and I don’t think anywhere is harder to catch ride than indoor cross country at an International show! Tim summed it up with the comment that “it’s been such fun, I have loved being a part of it and tonight was very exciting. I am really looking forward to returning next year but definitely with my own horse!”.
Yup, it’s definitely a partnership thing. Maxime Livio and Boleybawn Prince won again, by just 0.1 and thats what the crowd love to see.
So Tim can finally put his cross country gear away for the year and the next time he dons it it will be spring in 2023. Tim flew home from Sweden this Monday morning with just a few days left before the Price family head back home for the first time in a couple of years and Abel will finally get to meet her cousins on the other side. It’s been a long wait but Christmas in the South Island finally beckons and as the baby horses at Mere start heading out for their own holidays the grown up ones are heading back in for 6 weeks of hacking out and allot of clipping and ‘de-mudding’ ahead of the crew on the yard. Tim and Jonelle head into the winter as World No.1 and World No.2 and that’s some way to see out 2022. Its been a blast, thank you for following the blog and we will be back next season!