Thursday, 31 May 2012

Borde Hill. busy busy bee!

Sorry its taken so long to do a write up, been very very busy with 5 horses on the yard and exams its been none stop this week, but loving it!

Anyway Borde Hill... brilliant day, as usual most of my absolutely fabulous support team turned up to watch, help and support, this consisted of... (MDR) Michael and Lisa Rogers, (Yara:s owners) David and Will, my legend of a Gandad and of course my cracking parents Justine and Martin!!!!

Yara has recently being a bit challenging but this was very much expected, she has been so easy I have been waiting for it, she is, after all in her teenage years!!. Even though she is challenging she is still very gorgeous.

Dressage: She warmed up beautifully but it was very unfortunate that our arena was on quite a steep slope, she found this quite tricky to deal with because she can still be very unbalanced, I think this is why the mark wasn't her usual standard. but I was pleased with the warming in!
Show Jumping: this has been her most challenging of phases recently but she was actually quite good, we had one pole where we just got a bit onward and another jump where we had a slight miss communication but I was still pleased!
Cross Country: now this was an interesting one! I schooled her round because I felt it was slightly stiff for Yara  and I'm glad I did because it was sticky, I definitely needed super glue for that round, she had a wobble at a little log thing just before the water, she was just a little green with all the shadows on the jump and on the water, so she stopped but then she came round again and we scrambled over it! but hey ho I always knew this was going to happen, they always say you have to go backwards before you can go forwards. Just a waiting game now, Yara just needs to mature a bit but this will come with more outings and time.


Dressage: 25.5 what can I say he is amazing!
Show Jumping: He did fly but again just a bit onward in the last line and he just clipped it with a back leg.
Cross Country: He flew round and I really tested him talking the tightest and the trickiest lines but he was SPOT ON!!!!!
Resulting in a 4th good boy the Mull Man!

You can see all the action of the day on the videos on my website:

Friday, 25 May 2012

Rocklodge Nasdaq coming to Upper Barn

View Horsham-20120515-00585.jpg in slide show

 I have such exciting news. Just had it confirmed today that Rocklodge Nasdaq (Hector) will be coming to join Team Upton at Upper Barn on Monday. Hector is owned by Sarah Millard and is the sweetest, kindest horse and is absolutely gorgeous. All the information about Hector will be on my website, but here is a little picture of him.

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Tweseldown ODE Show Report

Emily and I relaxing after a hard day's work!!!

After all the cancellations it was fantastic to be out eventing again. My friend Emily Bennett came along as "show groom". Cutting it a little fine Dad dropped Mum and I at the entrance to Tweseldown, they went to park and Dad and Emily studded up and tacked up whilst Mum and I met Michael from MDR photo to walk the course. It was an old fashioned track with big, bold fences, which required positive riding and some thought out lines. It was a bit ditchy and they are not Mulligans' favorite obstacles with water coming a close second.

After training a couple of weeks ago with Gill Watson, I was hoping that my dressage might be ok. Poor Mull after 2 years of hunting this dressage lark has been a bit of a shock. Its incredible how far he has come in 5 weeks since we have had him. My aim for the dressage was to get him more uphill and truly engaged.
Result: 24 dressage. He got a 9 for his halt and the comments on the sheet from the judge "I loved the activity of this test, well done".

Why was I worried about this phase? Oh yes because Mull has been very naughty with his jumping and his track record to be fair is not great. However he was on fire. I did lose my reins over the double, there is a very funny picture of me trying to grab them and we did catch a pole, not sure how. The pictures even show us clearing it by a mile. Mum said the pole rocked in the cups and just teetered over the edge, down it dropped. Hey ho. I was very pleased with the Mull Man.

Cross Country
Great for Mulligan we arrived at the warm up with only one other person there, so we had a quick warm up and off we went. He just pinged out of the start box. He went in a lovely rhythm all the way round, if anything i would say he didn't really show the jumps any respect. Could feel the slight hesitation coming at the ditch but I didn't give him a chance. We finished well within the optimum time.

Final position: We finished on a score of 28 in a very hotly contested section. 4th place. Yay!

Thank you to Emily for all her help and to Michael again for such wonderful photos.

Pictures taken by MDR photo can be found on my website. This link will take you straight into a slide show of the photos.

Sunny 20/5/12

IMG_2792 Sunny 20/5/12, a set on Flickr.
Sunny 20/5/12, a set on Flickr.
Today we went to see Sunny, my old pony. It is two years since we sold him and it has taken this long before I could bear to go and see him.
He was a pony of a lifetime, every child should have a pony like Sunny to teach them the ropes.
Sunny came to us, unseen, through a friend. He was brought up on a farm and had been a fab pony for two people before coming to me. When we heard about him he had been happily grazing in a field in Cheltenham for 6 months after being a top tetrathlon pony.
He arrived whilst we were on holiday and went to Camilla Kear for a week. Both Camilla and Jenny said if we didn't buy him, they would!
I had many, many wins on Sunny, he taught me eveything and i remember it was also the time that I first met Ken Spencer and he started to train me.
A few highlights stick in my head but none more than at the age of 12 after only a couple of trainings with Ken our 26 dressage and win at Eridge. I actually cried when I read the dressage board and so did Mum. Sunny was type of pony that you could ride bareback through the fields in a headcollar one day and event him the next.
It was so lovely to see him so happy today. He has gone to the best family. At the time we sold him we had two people that wanted him, the other lady kept ringing and offering more money, but we chose the home over everything else and he leads a very happy laid back life, the best life a horse could wish for.
Instead of leaving him feeling sad, Mum and I left feeling very happy. Thank you Helen and Lizzie for giving him such a great home and and inviting us along today.

Sunday, 13 May 2012

My New Website

I have just had the most amazing birthday present from MDR photo, my very own website. Hours of work has gone into this, I hope you like it. Thank you Michael and Lisa. I am so lucky to have you supporting me.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Choosing a Sponsor

Most of you will know by now that I am sponsored by MDR photo. The story of how I came to be supported by MDR photo is not an unusual one. Michael put a notification out on twitter and facebook, I happened to be following MDR and by chance saw the post. Then followed a long deliberation with the parents about whether I was too young etc etc. Quite rightly so they did not want me put under any pressure at my age and the most important thing to them was that I had fun and enjoyed what I did. They decided to let me apply and I got the biggest shock when I was asked to submit some more information and was even more shocked when I got an email to say that Michael had chosen me! It is not for me to say why Michael chose me over the other applicants but I am so glad he did.
After the initial excitement had died down, Mum called Michael to discuss it through , she was still a little bit worried as I was still at school. After she had spoken to Michael she said she felt that he was just right. Then Eventing Radio picked up the story through twitter and Michael and I went on radio. That was nerve racking but I really enjoyed it. Lots of emailing, facebooking and twittering went on and we finally met at Tweseldown. Its hard to imagine just a few months on  Michael and Lisa not being in our lives, they are such lovely people. I do not feel any pressure when they are at competitions and when I am being photographed only really supported. The photographs are fantastic and I am not just saying this, they are the best photographs I have ever had taken. I think it helps that Michael used to event himself.. Whats more I am going to have all those memories of my competitions recorded in photos and video for me to look back on. Michael and Lisa then came to our house to do a yard shoot, well the weather could not have been worse but Michael came up with some different ideas and the shots that he got in the stables were amazing.
Michael has also been working on a very special project for me, it something that is going to be launched very soon and we are very excited about.
Sponsorships can only work if they are two way. We promote Michael at every opportunity, its not hard to do because he is such a fantastic photographer, he gives up so much of his time to support me, we want to support him in anyway that our family can. There is still a lot more we can do and will continue to do so.
If you are interested in having a photoshoot with MDR Photo they have 50% off at the moment! Michael is very well thought of and becoming very well known in the equine world, I would take advantage of this while you can. You can see a lot of his photos on my blog but for more information go to

Monday, 7 May 2012

Training with Gill Watson

This was exactly what Mulligan and I needed! Mulligan knew he was going back home and he whinnied all the way up the Dunsdon's drive, I could have been a bit jealous but actually he did the same when we got home!

My dressage on Mulligan has been good and we have had some nice results but the comments on the sheets show that I need to get him more uphill.

In line with the dressage judges, after I had warmed up Gill said it looked nice but she felt it could be more uphill!! I think I have the message, this is what we worked on the whole lesson! And I tell you if my next dressage test judge says he needs to be more uphill, I shall need to give myself a good talking to, because he can do it and so can I!!