April kicked off in great style – I received a phone call to say that Lisci and I had been chosen to represent Great Britain at Saumur in France!! This will be our first international abroad so it will be a great experience and learning curve.
Rabbit went and did her second ever Elementary test and won with 72.5% – what a great start for her at this level and being only 5 years old she’s got such a bright future.
Next stop for her was the National Winter Championships at Hartbury last week – this was her first championship. She did me proud in the Novice Gold Freestyle class to produce a lovely test to music. She coped brilliantly with the atmosphere to score 71.85% for 5th place – what a star she is! The floor plan was quite simple compared to others but then their horses were older and I designed it when she was 4 years old so had to design accordingly; maybe she could have won with a more complicated floor plan.
The following day she had the Novice Gold. She was a bit more aware of her surroundings as there were a lot more people watching and it was quite noisy. Again she did really well, just a bit tense but she did some lovely work… It was just a shame she lost her concentration in one of her canter strike offs so picked up wrong lead. I corrected it straight away but you can’t afford mistakes at this level. Nevertheless I was thrilled with her 68.65%- two judges had us in top 8. She has such a great temperament for her age and I can’t wait for her to strengthen up and fill out into her big frame. She seems to be doing a lot of growing at the moment; hopefully the spring grass will do her some good.
I had a dramatic event with Lisci last Tuesday – I went to bring her in from the field but she didn’t want to be caught. She’d had a bit of a canter around, then stopped, coughed and blood gushed out from both nostrils! I called the vet who scoped her, took bloods and did a tracheae wash – which resulted in a lot of blood all over the vet and me! Luckily the trachea wash results were clear, but her bloods were abnormal so she’s on antibiotics and steroids; fingers crossed she’ll be ok for France! She is certainly feeling very well after a few easy days so it’s looking very promising. She’s bouncing around and being a general pain in the backside, especially out hacking! The only worry with France is making sure I can get her head down so any fluid can drain but I will open partitions right up and feed her off the floor while she’s on the ferry.
This week is extremely busy with horses to ride and clients to teach, trying to earn as much as I can to pay for the trip to France which is not cheap and then I won’t earn any money while I’m away so I need to factor that in. I’ve got to sort out the ferry, international breakdown cover and a few other bits and pieces.
I’m so excited for France – I just hope I can make it all worth it.