34 - Combined Training Competition

Well the combined Training Coaching day on 26th March was brilliant with 18 of you attending and getting ready for the competition on 23rd April.

What a day for it being so hot, but fantastic not to have any rain for a change. Many hours of preparation had been put in prior to the day with Louise and Kevin doing most of the painting with help from Sam and Madison the day before. Tony put in all new fencing in case anyone fell off and took all the jumps out for us on the tractor. The rosettes arrived the day before along with the dressage sheets, thank goodness.

On the day everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. Claire was fantastic and judged class one and two for us which gave me time to act as secretary. Beryl severed up endless cups of tea and cakes to keep every ones energy levels up. Chris and Jay parked all the lorries and Jay even managed to run from one area to another- well done Jay. Lorraine was our lovely dressage steward and Jo did all the adding up. Louise was jump steward and got a little hot and sun burnt. I judged class three and was general dog’s body


Thank you to our sponsors for class 1 D&G Equestrian Supplies, who kindly came along to the event with their stall. To Longthorns Farms sponsors of class 2 and "aherbalifestyle" for sponsoring class 3. For more information on weightloss or wellness programmes visit our website or for a free wellness evaluation please phone Gilly or Louise

Looking forward to the next Coaching Day 15th May- only a few places left so hurry and get booked on.

Next Competition not to be missed- Sunday 29th May - Next blog entry- NATIONAL REVIEW

1st of May 2011

33 - National Championships

Photo of Gilly, her dad and Louise at the National Champtionship 2011With renewed confidence I was feeling very good about the Nationals. Rommel seemed to be going better day by day. He really feels more in self- carriage with so much power.

Louise travelled with me to the Nationals on 13th April and had to put up with me analysing every detail, several times. She only nodded off once or twice during the 3 hour journey. Mum and dad were already there in their motor home. They really are so supportive.

On arrival at Hartbury College I could not believe the size of it all and how far away we had to park the lorry. This could only mean one thing; a very long way to the warming up arena- my worst nightmare. I decided at that point that I would lead him to the warm up and get on in there. But someone else had other ideas. Yes you guessed it Louise and you can also guess who got her own way as usual. I got on at the lorry!

We had a lot to negotiate, past other arenas, wheel chairs horses coming out of prize giving’s but he was really good, maybe overwhelmed.

He warmed up well in first arena, just a little tense and when we moved to the holding arena he really relaxed.

It was our turn to go into the tunnel – he went in but shot out, it was rather like being spat into the arena. He had a good look around and then felt great. I was so excited, no longer nervous and I am thrilled with how he went.

We did not win or get placed, but what an experience, I loved the moment and look out next year. Well done Rommel.

Photo of Gilly and friends at the National Champtionship 2011It was a fantastice surprise when I came out to see so many familiar faces. Thank you girls for coming to support me it really ment so much and thank you Louise - I could not have done it without you.

1st of May 2011

32 - Lecture Demonstration

After 5 months of preparation the day finally arrived and yes I was very nervous. When my car would not start first thing in the morning, my heart was racing. Lucky for me Andy was off work and had time to get it fixed.

With his car now loaded with cakes, tea, coffee, posters, tack, notes etc; I was off to plait Rommel. My lovely friend Kim was going to groom him and go with him in Lynn Kelly’s Lorry.

I am really lucky that so many people helped me. Phil was great doing all the tickets, flyer and programmes. Ali and Jo organised the raffle and did the tickets on the door. Lynn & Geraldine put the posters up and sold programmes, mum, dad and Kathy sold teas, coffees and cakes.

4pm arrived and we were off. I know I was a little shaky at the start but once the horses came in I felt myself relax.

I was so proud of all my clients and friends, they rode brilliantly under extreme pressure and the horses were fantastic- especially mine!!! Sorry only joking you always think yours is lovely and Louise was not bad.

I think it was great to see so many talented local riders and horses working correctly at different levels. To come out and produce the work that they did in front of so many people takes a lot of nerve. Yes some mistakes were made, but that was actually beneficial as it gave me something to talk about.

The aim was to show a complete range of horses working within their own capabilities and showing the main differences as the horses’ progress up the levels. These differences in way of going were very apparent even to the untrained eye. I hope the message got through that correct training is the only way forward and with this comes the correct muscular development of the horse enabling him to carry out his work with ease and elegance.

It just remains for me to say THANK YOU to all the riders, horses, grooms, helpers and those that sponsored the programme. The programme shows the riders Preliminary level to PSG and some of the details covered during the demonstration.

I am so pleased to be able to send a cheque for £240 to the World Society of Protection of Animals WSPA so thank you to everyone who came and supported the evening.

1st of May 2011

30 - National Dressage Championships

Having had a few technical problems building up to the Winter Regional Champions three weeks ago, I was thrilled to be placed 5th with a good score of 71.94%. It was this score that was to earn us a wild card and a place in the National Dressage Championships on 13th April 2011.

Three days before the Regional Championships I was on my way to pick up the lorry and take Rommel for a practise run through my freestyle test with trainer Melanie Norris. I was listening to the music in my car, when the CD started jumping then stopped. No matter how many times I pressed the eject button and every other button in my car it was not coming out. I arrived for my lesson and broke the news to my trainer, who said that could only happen to you!

I started warming up and my friend Claire Speer suggested that I could try the music she used for her horse. We gave it a go with Claire calling the test whilst the music was playing. Rommel loved the music and I thought I could remember the test- unusual for me! We tried it once more and the next time we did it was at the championships. So I would like to say a big thank you to Claire

As usual my lovely friend Louise and would-be equine specialist husband Andy said I could do better. I am just waiting for my lecture demonstration on 30th April when Louise will be riding Rommel- Let’s see how easy it is then.

20th of March 2011

29 - Lecture Demonstration and Competitions

Plans are really under way now for the lecture demonstration "Dressage Through the levels" at Kingston Maurward College on Saturday 30th April.

I would really like to thank all the guinea-pig riders for agreeing to take part. So thank you Lynda Robinson, Jo Palmer, Lynn Watson, Tracey Tucker, Sarah Harrington, Louise Downing, Lynn Kelly, Charlie Sawyer and Claire Speer.

I am sure it will be a good evening and some of the proceeds will be going to the World Society of Protection of Animals (WSPA) which is such a worthy cause, so please come along and support us. Follow this link for details of the “Dressage Through the levels” demonstration.

Louise and I are also running some Combined Training Competitions at Higher Merley Farm in Wimborne on 23rd April, 29th May and 25th June. Classes range from 1ft to 2ft 6’. The winner will receive prize money of £15 and rosettes to 6th Place.

Thank you to our sponsors “D & G Equestrian Supplies” and “Longthorns Farm”.

Before each competition we are running a practise day, so come and join in and give yourself the best possible chance of doing well at the competition. All details for the "Combined Training Clinics" can be found here.

15th of February 2011

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