Sophie (3)I am currently in the middle of my uni exams so I’ll try and keep this update short and sweet. Unfortunately 3 horses have left the yard since my last update, so now it’s all about Henry and Max (or SuperMax as we like to call him). It’s really sad when horses get moved on to different riders, but unfortunately that is the way when you ride for an owner, and you just have to grit your teeth and bear it (although I did allow myself a few tears).

Henry has been out to a couple of little show jumping and arena eventing competitions since my last update – nothing too exciting or challenging but as he is only young and very inexperienced we have decided it is fairer on him to start properly competing when I am home from uni for the summer and can give him my full attention. Nevertheless he is schooling and jumping beautifully at home and I am super excited to take him out competing as soon as my exams are over.Sophie (2)

So, for the time being, the spotlight is well and truly on SuperMax who has taken to eventing like a pro! Max went to his first event at the end of March, the BE100 at Aston-Le-Walls Horse Trials, and stormed round like he had been doing it all his life – he was a superstar! We then took him to the Novice at Sapey Horse Trials where the dressage was little short of a disaster! Max was so badly behaved! He clearly decided that dressage is far too boring and needed spicing up a bit, and as a result we were completely last after the dressage (but at least he gave the judge something to laugh at). He made up for it in the jumping though with a foot-perfect clear in the show jumping and just one silly run out at a skinny in the cross country. Not bad for a first novice run!

Since then he has done two more novices and, touch wood, the dressage is improving each time (although if anyone has any tips on how to make a mad horse settle to the dressage then I would absolutely love to know – any help is always greatly appreciated). His proving to be a phenomenal cross country horse with two beautiful clears now under his belt at novice level, which means he is qualified for a CIC*, hooray!Sophie (4)

This summer I am hoping to compete Max in a CIC* and hopefully an Intermediate. It would also be great if we could qualify for a CCI*. At the rate he is going I am thoroughly looking forward to the rest of the season together.

One very exciting thing has happened since my last update – I was selected to represent Britain in the Student Rider Nations Cup in Belgium which was held over the Easter weekend. It was such a fantastic experience, and to top it all off, BRITAIN WON! I had an absolutely brilliant time with the opportunity to ride lots of different horses, I left Belgium having made many new friends from lots of different countries. I hope to be able to compete in many more SRNCs, and I urge all students who ride to get involved with the Student Riders and their wonderful competitions (even if you don’t ride, just go for the social!!) It really is a unique experience which everyone should enjoy!


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Ftd rider author box - Sophie

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