My last thoughts just before I go (to Badminton!!!!)…
First thing Monday morning we’ll be setting off to Gloucestershire, to the most well sign-posted event I’ve ever done. Which means as I write this (on a train to London for a business meeting), I only have a few days left to make all my preparations. I’m kind of glad I’ll be kept busy though because left to my own devices there are only two ways it could go; I get quite literally sick with excitement or I become dehydrated from crying every time I read about anything to do with Badminton. Actually there is a third, more likely option – I’m sick AND crying all the time (happy crying I hasten to add and perfectly normal for me so if/when you see me at Badders with tears streaming down my face, don’t worry). That is pretty much how I feel looking at the course pictures that are now online. Gotta love this sport.
I’ve been getting a few last preparations in for Supercobs – dressage lessons, fitness work and a little bit of cross country practice. The course pictures look really exciting and a great test but not impossible; though I have been listing out all the times I’ve done something similar with Corey so that I can draw on my experience at each ‘question’. I had a great show jumping lesson a fortnight ago and then decided not to jump again before the actual competition in case it bursts the confidence bubble! I’ve also set my goals of what I want to achieve, but I’m going to keep them quiet for now!
Talking about amazing training sessions, one really fantastic thing that has come out of qualifying, certainly for me, but for all the grassroots competitors as far as I can see, is the amount of effort we’ve put into training and improving and the inevitable impact that has had on our progression as riders. It’s a massive boost to the grassroots sport overall too as I see so many people working hard to become better eventers in order to qualify. Before I’ve even got there I can say it’s worth all the effort so keep at it!
Our plans for the final few days are to do one more dressage school, one more bit of fitness and then to just pootle round to keep him soft and relaxed. Then there is nothing more I can do other than try my best and channel my inner WFP (and my best Mary King smile).
I’m getting wishes of good luck from friends far and wide, from people I didn’t even expect would know about Badminton (I’ve obviously been banging on about it far too much, sorry!). One of my most amazing friends has sent me a good luck gift with a perfect reminder to enjoy the journey too – I’m going to heed her words all her week. I am really really grateful to all of you for the support. You can all be honorary members of Team Supercobs.
Bring it on – it’s going to be awesome.