Harley definitely had that first event of the season excitement he showed this in ample through the dressage via not walking and adding two bucks to the test! He also struggled with the muddy arena so a score of 40.5 was fair.
The show jumping warm up was by far the worst affected area and we were in half minds whether to run or not, but after a virtual kick up the bum we kicked on. We had an unlucky 2 poles but managed to jump the bogie fence no problems.
When we walked the XC, first impressions were that it was quite a decent course considering it was the first of the season. For us I knew there would be two possible problem fences as Harley had never experienced either before. The first being fence 3 which was a pile of bright yellow pipes on a trailer. The second would be the sunken road- although he’s done drops he’s never seen a fence which required him to drop, stride then jump up.
We set off in a good rhythm, fence 3 came up quick, and although he looked at it a little he cleared it pretty well considering my worry. We landed after fence 4 a little awkwardly due to almost colliding with a tree but then got in a great rhythm finding the log with drop easy. After a few more fences we reached the sunken road. Unfortunately my worries we’re confirmed and Harley was rather complexed at first. We turned around to represent and he popped down nicely. Sadly at this point I seemed to forget to steer so we had to circle. We then galloped on without any issues, he especially made the corner feel easy, but knowing we’d have been penalised technically for two stops under BE rules we took it steady.
So a rather hefty score but a completion none the less and due to the low numbers in sections a top twenty finish!
The positives I’m going to take away from this include riding in these conditions- a week later and I’m still cleaning off the mud! Meeting new challenges and conquering them - even f it took a little longer than hoped! We’ve survived the first event of the season in one piece, sound and happy!
We were also so lucky to have my amazing supporters Equibright come along.
So roll on Stafford where hopefully we’ll reduce that cricket score!