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YouTube gems – Madcap races and rides!

I love watching old/rare/unusual video clips of equestrianism in all it’s forms. This week I have spotted 3 corkers being shared on social media, so if you’ve missed them you’re in for a treat! Firstly the Dromin Athlacca Community Ride  in Ireland it’s a 15 mile charity ride over seriously tough terrain, oh and some clapped out old cars! You have to see it to believe it! Read more about the ride here The second is an oldie but a goodie from 1920, black and white footage of cavalry riding training, where by no means the hardest thing the horses and…

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It’s a horse NOT a robot!

Hard work = results, right? well yes, but progress is sadly not quite that easy or linear when it comes to horses. When things are going well it’s easy to imagine that success can be incrementally built on. In this ideal situation if you charted your progress throughout your riding career it should appear as a straight line graph beginning at the bottom with competing at little local competitions ending up at the peak with you storming round 4*’s with the rest of the best! If only…. Along the way there are many moments when things seem to fall apart,…

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British Dressage success 1st & 2nd, who’d a thunk it?!

On Saturday both Dustry and I worked our little socks off in our lesson, concentrating on really getting him to give in the neck, round, work over his back, and take more weight on his hind legs. On my front I really need to work on riding better in general (don’t we all!?) but in particular maintaining my body position, core and seat, keep my elbows bent and soft and not letting my hands go hay wire when he becomes fussy in the mouth. My brilliant instructor Amanda Brewer really put us through our paces and by the end of…

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MacWet – A handy new sponsor to have!

I am very excited to announce that I have a new sponsor – MacWet!  MacWet have very kindly agreed to sponsor me with some of their gloves, which is well….PRETTY MEGA! I love their gloves and have been wearing them for years. I have several old pairs which have died through over use, but I still hold onto them so that I can cut the (now open ended!) fingers off and use them as fingerless gloves in the summer! Cunning huh?… I now have 3x lovely new pairs of their short cuff styles, some in their ‘micromesh’ fabric which helps…

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Bleary-eyed blogger looking to meet horse who is a ‘morning person’

Summer seemed to be over in a flash and as of last Sunday night Dustry is now back in and stabled at night which can only mean one thing for me, early starts until the winter is over! Big waaaaaaaaaaaaah! I am not a fan of early mornings, in particular the initial getting out of bed bit!. Once I am up and awake I am then though unbearably smug and self satisfied at this gargantuan achievement of mine, so it’s best that there aren’t too many people up and about at that hour, as I feel my chirpy mood might…

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Show jumping progress, my weakest link is getting stronger!

I have always thought of the show jumping phase of eventing as my weakest link. Give me a xc course or a dressage test any day, show jumping and I just didn’t get on. I’ve never had a horse that was talented or experienced at show jumping, and as a result I’ve never gained much confidence as a rider that I can ride a good sj round….until now…..             2x things have slotted into place recently. Firstly my mega instructor Amanda Brewer has had me doing a brilliant straightness exercise that has worked wonders on…

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I’ll need to buy a bigger hat…

….if my head gets any bigger! 😉 First of all I get a heads up on facebook from a friend saying she has spotted me in the latest Rideaway magazine in one of the product shots from the Mountain Horse shoot I went on! Here I am doing my best ‘feeding a treat’ pose. Then secondly tonight Horse & Hound published a piece I wrote for them about getting sponsorship! Wowzer do I feel famous, or what?… Pretty sure tomorrow my hat will be a snug fit, but not to worry I’m sure Dustry will help bring me back down…

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Combined training 6th!

Well after a short summer holiday (5 days in France for me, 5 days in the field for him) Dustry and I entered some more combined training at West Wilts EC hoping for a better performance in the show jumping phase than last time. We had a lesson 2 days before and I am still struggling to ride a good corner and straight line to a fence when coming off the right rein (his stiffer rein). We worked on a handy exercise where by you ride the corner to the fence but pass it on a straight line either to…

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Fairfax Girths: Not just another gadget!

After the 2012 Olympics it seems all anyone horsey could talk about was Fairfax girths, our Team GB secret weapon! Intrigued about their effect, but also way too broke to buy one in order to find out for myself what they were like I carried on with my regular shaped leather girth. As luck would have it one of the ladies at my yard won a Fairfax girth in a competition (lucky devil!) so when it arrived I got to speak to her first hand about how she felt it helped her horse and if she thought it was worth…

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Show jump schooling homework

It’s frustrating to have an empty paddock, and a stack of show jumps, but be thwarted by ankle shatteringly hard ground. Thankfully we’ve finally had enough rain to make the going good, so wasting no time this morning I got as many jumps as I could physically move from the arena into the field, and set up a few fences. Groomed, tacked and, studded up we began warming up. Dustry has been a little….how shall I put this?….over exuberant? of late, and so I was just aiming to have him be receptive and to calmly school around a few jumps.…

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