After Burghley I wound down the BE competitions and concentrated on getting a bit more education for the younger horses. We have some quite good Hunter Trails round and about us and so rather then trail 4hr to get to a BE100, I made use of them and quite often the prize money is better!!!!! We had Harry and Ben for the open classes and Levi for the 75/80 cm ones. Ben was just in for a brief bit for some Schooling and a few more mile on the clock before the end of the season whilst owner Elana Chilton had an operation to mend her finger. Ben is the 3rd of Elana's horses to come for a stay at Craigow over the years and I always enjoy having them as she picks good jumpers! Levi (AKA Duckling) is a slightly smaller addition at 14.1hh he was a project that I bought with Janice and what a little cracker he is, although he has been sold to a client he will stay here till the spring, which we are all really pleased about as such a fun pony.
Going back to the Hunter trails, Levi was the best at Glenfarg coming 2nd in his class with Janice pretty good start for a first go at 4 yrs old, Harry was 3rd in the Open and Ben jumped well just showing up a few green spots in his education when it came to skinny's, so a little home work for him got that nicely sorted. Gleneagles was the next and I had a shot on Levi for that, another really nice clear but he knew what it was all about this time so we were a little speedy for the time. Harry picked up a prize in the open and felt great and I had a really nice clear on Ben as well so a nice way to round off the competitions.
It was then time for a bit of rider down time and I headed for the Airport to catch up with my sister and 7 friends in the South of France. If you check out this link you can see what happened in THE LITTLE FRENCH ADVENTURE courtesy of Camilla Rutherford who takes amazing photos and writes much better than me!
After living it up in Biarritz it was back to the glamorous job of horse rider! And a sit tight horse rider at that as Yorkie and Duck where all coming back into work. The majority of the outings with the horses have just been training since my return but I have made it to Morris to do some BS with Harry who was on cracking form jumping lovely double clears in the 1.05/1.10 Handicap and also the 1.10 picking up a 3rd and a 5th he does love his Show Jumping. I also got to snaffle Rusty back for 10 days which was fab, although not so good as I then didn't want to give him back after being reminded what a pocket rocket he is. The reason for his return was the Mary King Demo at Gleneagles, where I was a demo rider, it was always a little bit of a gamble taking him as he loves a party but hates a crowd, so can get tense in big atmosphere situations, so the 600 spectators was a challenge but other than being a bit on his toes he coped really well and enjoyed himself and definitely didn't give any hint as to slowing down with age, 17 going on 4 more like!
We have two new horses, Zeus a 4yr old and Paddy an 8 yr old ex race horse. Zeus is just in to further his education and has been coming on really well with trips to Edenside and Howe and looks an extremely promising horse for the future, as there is a lot of scope with his paces and his jump, together with a good mind, which is very exciting. Paddy is a little smaller than Zeus but has a very tidy jump and moves well, having been out of racing for 18 months, I am excited to see what next year will bring for him as he is could be a lot of fun, he is picking everything up well and we are seeing improvements from him all the time. Sponsorship wise I am really pleased to be using and backing Sorbeo Horse Bedding we are a long term user of wood pellets and these are great quality and value, so definitely worth a wee look at their website and possibly a little try!
Other goings on have been the BE Scotland ball which is always a fun evening although a challenge to recognize anyone with out their crash hats on! I picked up the award with Duck for the Scottish owned horse that is highest in the BE rankings. Duck has had a fab year and has he finished in 36th place in the BE rankings. With Nereo and Opposition Buzz the two places above and = with Clifton Promise so very smart company! I finished in 56th place so very pleased with my team of horses.