Day 1 of Bicton we had BAYANO (Barney) in the OI, MONARTS MASTERPIECE (Smudge) in the AI and VARDAGS SARATOGA (Sara) in the INT.
Barney was feeling rather fresh in the dressage but still managed a very competitive 25.5 despite squeeling with excitement in the medium canters! He jumped a beautiful double clear – but was held 3/4 of the way round the XC. I stopped my watch and then re-started it so I knew I was well within the time when I finished and we were awarded 0 penalties and 4th place! When I came back to collect my prize the following day however they had adjusted the time and we dropped to 5th, rather annoying as I knew we had been way quicker but still a fabulous performance fro Bayano and hopefully his luck with improve in-time for his big event coming up!
Smudge was excellent on the flat so we felt he was harshly marked for a 34 but was still in very good company! He picked up 8 faults jumping despite jumping a lovely round and then cruised round the XC feeling entirely confident and putting any Belton issues behind him.
Sara was dramatically improved on the flat scoring her best mark at the level for a 31, we are so proud of her!! She too jumped a lovely double clear picking up 0.8 of a time fault to finish 5th in a very strong section. We were thrilled with her all day and particularly pleased with how settled and relaxed she was from start to finish
Day 2 I was riding MAGNIFIQUE VD DOORNHAAG (Maggie) in the NOV and IRIANA PFB in the BE100. Maggie was her usual relaxed self to score 29 on the flat and then jumped a much improved clear SJ round to move well up the leader board as the SJ had caused all sorts of trouble. She gave me a super ride XC, cruising round well inside the time to WIN!
Iris delivered her best test to date to score an impressive 26, she also jumped a really classy double clear making everything feel very easy to finish in 2nd. She will now step up to NOV level – exciting times ahead for this super talented girl.
A massive thank you to my super supportive owners for all their support throughout a busy weekend, and of course our entire team who work incredibly hard to keep everything going and enable our horses (and me!) to perform at their best.