AFTER Burnham

After Burnham it was a quiet uneventful week with gentle training in progress and V.I.P Vinnie, The Partner and Ballycoog Breaker Boy having a quiet week after their successful weekend at Burnham Market.

Week End Off……

19th April brought a rare weekend off for all the family. We were at a family wedding of a great friend. It was a beautiful, picturesque english country wedding - in the village that we grew up in for 18 years. My sister, Missy was a bridesmaid and I escorted the Bride’s mother up the aisle to her seat. It was great to catch up with friends we grew up with who we don’t see so much, now we have moved to Berkshire from Cambridgeshire. That’s the first of my friends married with another wedding in a few weeks.

Structured Training…...

The second week after Burnham was quite busy as we increased the workload ready for Withington. Monday was gallop day where the distance and frequency are increasing as we get closer to the mid season 3 day events at the end of May/beginning June. This was followed by Osteopathy treatment by Gavin Scofield on Tuesday so it was up early to get them all ridden before he came so they could rest after their treatment. Tuesday also bought Kenney to the yard who is in for a few weeks training concentrating on his core strength development.

Accidents Happen……

Immy who works with me had an accident at Whitfield on the Tuesday in the show jumping and had to be taken to hospital. Her poor Mum had to drive the horse in Immy’s lorry back to the yard and turn around and go straight to the hospital. We hadn’t realised that she had never driven the lorry before otherwise we would have gone to meet her. The spooky thing was that they had a conversation on the way where her Mum said she must drive the lorry sometime and Immy said “what incase I get knocked out!” Three hours later that is exactly what happened. This happened at 1.40pm ish and after a number of scans they were given the all clear to go home at about 1.30am! Immy has a slightly punctured lung and is very bruised and having been knocked out is off competing for at least 3 weeks which is the minimum time off before you can compete again. Before you start competing again you have to be signed back by a doctor once you have been given the all clear. Mum has had to step into the breach as full time groom and is very relieved to see Immy back now although trying to stop her from doing too much is a must. It brings home to us all how much we rely on the team around us and how important each one is on their specific roles.

Monthly Training……

Wednesday John Bowen was with us for the day - training myself and all the horses - they all had a dressage and SJ lesson except Ted who just had a jump lesson. Ted is an exciting prospect and always puts a smile on my face - I have to keep reminding myself that I did buy him specifically to sell - luckily I never said when….! He is beginning to get a bit of attitude which I like but also is working very well on a daily basis. He will continue to be developed until I am away at the end of May when he will have a few weeks off.


We were due to compete 4 horses at Withington at the weekend. We kept a watchful eye on Storm Hannah as the purpose of taking The Partner and V.I.P Vinnie was to give them both quiet, easy runs before their bigger competitions coming up. After a lot of deliberation we decided there was no benefit in running either of them in high winds as it would have just caused stress and tension. Luckily Sunday was the better day and we took Ballycoog Breaker Boy and Stardom to run in the Novice classes. This was to be Stardoms first step up to Novice. We have tried to get to Withington a number of times but never made it for one reason or another and we were glad to finally get there, despite having taken a wrong turn and landed up driving down a lane for 3 miles the width of the lorry!! Stardom put in a great performance and really stepped up to it with a great double clear. I thought he was very harshly marked in the dressage, but hey ho, I was pleased with it and it was a better test than at Larkhill.

Ballycoog Breaker Boy pulled it out the bag - with a 24.1 double clear to Win! They both performed very well but still have so much strengthening to do before they really come into their own. In a couple of years they’ll both be class.

V.I.P. Vino

Sadly we have come to the conclusion that Vino is not going to make it as an Eventer. This is really gutting as over the last 4 years he has shown glimmers of real potential, and we have thrown everything at him to make it happen but there are times in life when you have to say enough is enough. That’s the easy decision, now the difficult one is what happens to him now as we do not have the space to keep him as field art!......lots of contemplating to be done with the team.

Busy Busy…….

We now have Chatsworth, Rockingham, Tattersalls and Bramham coming up so busy times and lots of planning.

We wish everyone competing at Badminton a Happy and safe competition and we look forward to watching them all on the telly - best seat in the house!