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Looking forward to the 2017 season

08-February-2017 22:38
in General
by Admin

I'm still currently, sunning myself in New Zealand (in reality I am teaching a bunch of clinics with some promising and enthusiastic riders) whilst Tess is back in the UK preparing the horses for the new season. 

They have completed 8 weeks of early fitness and Bear and Sox have spent the last 2 weeks at dressage boot camp. I am very lucky that Lucy Cartwright agreed to have both horses to stay for 3 weeks schooling. Lucy is a successful Grand Prix rider that worked with Carl Hester in her formative years. She was entrusted with the ride on Valegro when he was starting out on his illustrious career. Lucy has worked succesfully with Bear in the past.

They will return home early next week as Team Vet, Christiana Ober will visit for a pre season check of all the horses and then their galloping programs will begin.

I have chosen to start my season about 3/4 weeks later than usual as I would prefer to wait until the going is hopefully better and there is a long and busy schedule from April to November anyhow. With a bit of luck, Bear will head towards Badminton, Sox and JD will head towards another CCI*** in the spring and then I will make plans for the autumn. It would be great if I could have 3 horses earmarked for autumn 4 star events. Ned (Dassett Courage) will return to competition in the late spring and might be aimed towards the Event Rider Masters series.

My last commitment in New Zealand before heading back to the UK will be to design the xc tracks for the Northland Horse Trials. I have really enjoyed my first season in my new role as designer and have learnt a huge amount, mainly thanks to the great mentoring from David Evans. Although I have a wealth of experience as a rider, it is interesting to put on another hat and present a safe and interesting test for a varied level of competitors. Developing my skills in this role is something I am very much looking forward to.