This is my most local British Eventing Horse Trials, however we still had an early start as my dressage was at 8:06am! Luckily though as we are close I was able to walk the course the night before so at least didn’t have this to do on the morning too. We had an exciting entrance to the event, where the rain that had made the going excellent, it had made the entrance slightly less so – many lorries were being towed on by the tractor but after a short wait on the main road for a clear run I was very proud of myself getting through the muddy bits and onto the grass without need of the tractor!! One of the attendants yelled “give it some welly!” as I approached and it worked – an amusing start to the competition.
Ali was lovely in the dressage and did what we thought was her best test at Novice yet, staying nicely to the contact and not getting too distracted (apart from looking out of the corner of the eyes in the extended walk) even though we were right next to the entrance we lorries still being towed! She scored a slightly mean 31.5
Showjumping next – I thought it was quite a strong course with a double and a treble as well as the final line a triple bar on a downhill to an upright. It looked to be riding well for the first couple of horses though. Ali still felt half asleep (still before 9am but she is used to being ridden before work, but rarely jumping at this time I suppose!) and was rather on the forehand, after a bit of waking up though she was jumping well in the work in. However after a big jump over the first in the ring she was not the easiest ride for the rest of the course and being a bit stroppy (mares!), she gradually improved as the course went on but wasn’t as on the aids as I would have liked but most importantly left all the poles up for a clear round. Phew!
I was a bit nervy before cross country as Donovan had a mistake at the 4th fence here a few years ago but I need not have worried and Ali proved again much better she is on a line the he is! To see the Novice course photos click here. She jumped everything really well and just after we finished the commentator announced we had finished dead on the optimum time so finished on our dressage score of 31.5 – fantastic!!
We got to watch quite a few XC while waiting for the class to finish and the 4th fence and the corner at 14 were causing the most problems. Homme House is a lovely event set in fabulous old parkland and has such a great friendly atmosphere. She finished in 3rd place, her best yet and a brilliant preparation for the 1 star at Somerford.