By the skin of our teeth we’ve just managed to pick up enough points to qualify for our first ever attempt at BD Winter Regional Champs. Until last week we had 11 points from various dressage outings through the year, but we needed 19 ‘prelim points’ to qualify. Our last attempt to pick up more points was a disaster! I took D to a local venue a few weeks ago and unbeknownst to me where I had applied some arnica cream to his back (because he had done a huge buck in the week and I wanted to make sure he wasn’t sore as a result) he’d had a reaction to the cream which resulted in a blister on the left hand side!!! He didn’t feel right warming in and after a terrible 1st test I called it a day because he wasn’t himself and that’s when on further investigation I noticed the sore patch! He then had 2 weeks off, a visit from his physio and he was fighting fit again. During his time off a friend recommended that I look into Back on Track products and as luck would have it a Back on Track rug was for sale on eBay so I snapped it up and have been putting it on D for a few hours a week, as you are supposed to gradually build up the use of them.
So with him ready for action again, as luck would have it I caught a cold! I had entered us for 2 more tests and despite sniffling and feeling a little zombie-esque we set off last Wednesday to try and pick up the 8 points we desperately needed. The sat-nav sent us on a very odd route to the competition venue and so we arrived with just 20mins before my first test – arrrgggh stressful.
I went to get my number and that’s when things really took a turn for the worse because I realised in my cold addled brain I had learned the wrong tests!!! Frantically searching through all my old test sheets in the lorry glove box and I didn’t have either of the tests I was supposed to ride so had to go and borrow them from the secretary!
Quick read through and an even quicker warm up and we had to go in for our first test – yikes!!!! Thankfully Mummy Groom was on hand to slowly and loudly call the test for me and we managed a pretty respectable test just being a little late in the free rein walk, which was a shame as that is a double score movement.
Back into the warm up and things had gone from the sublime to the ridiculous because despite the frantic stressful start to the day Dustry was going like a dream. He felt soft, flexible, athletic and was behaving and listening so well to everything I was asking. We went in for our second test and again he pulled out a really lovely performance.
Slightly bamboozled and probably in shock we returned to the lorry, un-tacked, washed off, boxed up, administered carrots and wandered back to the scores to see what we had got. We scored 67% for the first test, gaining us 4 points, and a mega 70.86% for the second test, gaining us 6 points. We had done it! despite the odds not being in our favour we picked up 10 prelim points which took our tally to 21, just over the 19 required to qualify – Wooooooo Hoooooo.