“As the weather starts changing and the days are getting shorter, we zoom into the last event of the year. Last year I did so many events all over the country I decided this year to finish a little earlier, at Weston Park. The horses have nothing left to prove for me this year so I have no reason to jump the legs off them, or get up in the middle of a cold dark night to slog 150 miles into a muddy field! Beau was entered in the BE100 and Dougal in the 100Open, as a nice final run for him, but I decided he really didn’t need the run, so as there was a waiting list we withdrew Dougal. This was lucky as when I walked the course I found 3 water jumps and I’m not sure Dougal would have appreciated that!
So with only Beau on, first to go at 8am, we pulled up at Weston in the dark – I struggled to see to get the studs in and was relieved it was the last time I would be doing this this year! Slightly tense dressage as is his way for 35, off to show jump first. The show jumping was definitely on the big and technical side and he absolutely relished it and jumped a super clear. Onto the XC, I was third to go. The first rider had an error of course and the 2nd to go fell off twice… this was quite telling of how tricky the course was going to be. My main worry was the low very bright sun, but Beau flew around. Despite me having completely the wrong optimum time, we finished bang on the optimum for a super clear. All done by 9.40, it was a long wait to discover we finished 5th! The show jumping and cross country proved influential all day. With both Dougal and Beau on Restore I think Beau was feeling in fantastic form. Dougal is having a couple of weeks off to chill. Time for Bailey to come back into work and aim to do some showjumping over winter.
Weston Park is a special venue as we got married here coming up to 6 years ago! Photo’s courtesy of Blackheart Imagery and Vincent Whitehead Photography.”