Positive vet reports, mixed up diaries and a spot of volunteering...
Sorry my blog is a little late this month but I wanted to let you know the good news regarding Ellie. As you may have read in November she was diagnosed with a neurological problem and the prognosis was guarded. She was treated by B&W vets, who mylogrammed her and then treated a compression in the neck with injections. We followed the rehab to the letter and last week she was examined again and presented no symptoms and was perfect on all the neurological tests. The vet could therefore confidently say that this would not affect her or limit her competitive career and we can crack on. Therefore hopefully future blogs may be filled with some competition action.
On the negative Posy who I am trying to sell has still not found the right home and I'm rather pulling my hair out. It is the first time I have sent a horse away to be sold (people don't like travelling to Cornwall) and although the yard are doing a great job the costs are mounting. Maybe good news on my next blog.
So what now for Ellie? She is in full work and just before this problem raised its head I had registered her for British Dressage so last Sunday we did our first BD competition together.Maybe we were a tad ambitious trying our first novices! It seems a travesty that I'm not eligible for any qualification classes at Prelim because of the level I reached with Sarnie who was the most uncooperative dressage horse ever!
We went to St Leonards which is a lovely friendly well organised yet low-key venue. We were entered in novice 24 and 34 quite similar short arena tests. I knew we would struggle a little and we did. At the moment she can get very tight in her frame and draw her head behind the verticle, whilst we had some nice work we also had elements spoilt by this, With time and strength this will improve dramatically I'm sure. Even then we scored 64% and 65% meaning she gained 5 dressage points and some mid class placings (4th and 5th)
This weekend we are off to Bicton International Horse Trials where I am volunteering for 3 days. Should be a great competition as some top riders entered and the parkland, facilities and organisation is second to none. Ellie is coming too which means I can work her in the warm up arenas before or after competition. My role for the weekend will be updating the live scoring which should be great fun, hope I can keep up!
I am aiming for Ellie's first BE to be mid May at Millfield, we didn't have a great time there with Posy last year, I came off after catching my foot in some brush at the edge of a fence. As lovely as Millfield is it doesn't have the happiest memories, better make some good ones this year. I will certainly be appreciating getting Ellie out and about again.
In March we also had the Shoestring holiday when horses are abandoned and we explore a different part of the country. This time it was Shropshire which was lovely. We couldn't though make it totally non horsey and on the way back I arranged a yard visit at National hunt trainer Oliver Sherwood.
We arrived the night before in Lambourn with accommodation booked we first sussed out where his yard was as the visit involved a 7.15 start. As I was checking the paperwork I suddenly realised that I had booked the Friday not the Saturday as I had thought and hence missed the tour. I was fairly upset at the wasted money and spoilt present! I posted on Facebook regarding my stupidity and as well as sympathy a couple of friends tagged and contacted Oliver and he rang me saying that we could join a tour the next day.
The whole experience was fascinating and certainly a few interesting observations. The horses were a lot more lightweight than I was expecting very few looking liked the old-fashioned chaser that I would describe as rangey but with a bit of substance. Interestingly Oliver agreed that the horses have changed and with it they seem to be more prone to injury. All the horses are stabled on straw (good quality) but he feels that lessens the liklihood of ulcers and that is key to their well being. I was also surprised to see after exercise the horses turned out in groups of 5 or 6, I have to admit with animals of that value I would worry regarding injury but again as herd animals he very much wants them to be happy.
We watched two lots on the gallops on what was a work day. At this time of the season the horses are all fit so ticking over with two 5 furlong work sessions up a steep all weather gallop. Interestingly I asked what different levels of work he would give a horse aimed at the Grand National (a 4 mile race) in comparison to a much shorter race, evidently the work is pretty similar and they don't work them differently. I was surprised to learn that Lambourn as what I thought was the home of jump racing now trains probably more flat race horses.
Back at home the great British weather is playing havoc with my plans again. I had intended to fertilise my fields by now but much of March was just too wet, we then had a week off and on my return I managed to do an acre (by hand) and we had a nice amount of rain to wash it in. Since then it has been bone dry so waiting for a little rain in the forecast before I finish the job.
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April 20, 2017 | Share: