Playing With The Big Boys

Playing with the Big Boys – Bramham

Not bad for a rider groom!

Not bad for a rider groom!

Well that’s it, Bramham is over for another year! It never fails to deliver and is such a fabulous, well organised event.

As I said on my last blog we were some what under prepared after a recent gastric ulcer diagnosis. But what can I say. He was incredible! We scored a PB in the dressage of 59. Yes, I appreciate to some people this wouldn’t be good enough, but for Siren and I, it’s amazing! We scored a sub 60! And he scored brilliant marks for his trot and walk work, but his 4 beat counter canter was extremely harshly marked (and rightly so) which brought our mark down.

Charlotte Braer Manor Missile ©Katie Neat Photography-2The cross country was big, tough and long! I was very apprehensive about it after our blip at Chatsworth, and for the first ever time I was nervous. I didn’t really know what to do!! As its such a local event we had all the family and friends there, and I have to admit getting quite stressed (I mean who forgets to pick my gloves up when the wagon is a short hike away!). I appreciate people trying to help, but I’m so used to doing it all myself! We set off out of the start box like a rocket. He was going so fast I had to really hold him tight around all round the course. Once we got out of the second water I kicked on and flew home!! With a stride Jung would be proud of over the second to last we flew home with 6 time penalties, but clear! We could have gone quicker, but my aim was to get him home, and have fun… And my god we had fun!! We had cheers at every fence and it reminded me of the fun we have eventing, and why I spend most my money, time and effort on it. He recovered extremely well and was allowed out of the finish box, to allow us all to get on the champagne!!

The best support team

The best support team

After cross country I was holding Siren whilst he was grazing. My mum (non horsey!) kindly offered to put him so extra straw in his stable. I told her where it was and she happily went to do it. About half an hour later she came back, proudly showing me a photo of his stable, which explaining the ‘bits of the side’ weren’t very big, but the middle of his bed was ‘extra thick and comfy for him to lay down’. I then headed back to his stable, to find him bedded up on hay, much to the amusement of the other grooms! Can’t say she doesn’t try! So our friends kindly did an awards ceremony that evening presenting her with ‘the best groom’ award!!

Mum and her 'Best groom' award

Mum and her ‘Best groom’ award

The next day the trot up was un-eventful. Siren doesn’t find it very exciting so just jogs down with his usual relaxed attitude.

Showjumping was tough! Built by Di Boddy meant it wasn’t the usual eventing course. It was up to height, everything was on a related dog leg distance and all the jumps were very wide. He jumped brilliantly, just running out of steam over the last two oxers, rolling the rails. But in a class which only produced a handful of clears we were over the moon.
So from 5 holes in his head and grade 4 ulcers to Bramham CCI*** in 8 weeks… What a superstar!!
He has since had the week in the field relaxing, had a repeat scope (90% better!) and is now back in for a week of hacking before back to work.

Sadly start of sweetitch season although not sure Siren wants to wear his rug!

Sadly start of sweetitch season although not sure Siren wants to wear his rug!

This weekend we are heading down the country to ride at the Centaur Biomechanics rider confidence weekend. We have a pole work session and a jumping session, both with Andrew Hoy. I’m really excited to be part of what looks like a brilliant weekend.

I have also had chance to plan the rest of my season. Barbury was an option but with reports that the ground can be quite hard (not suited to shire feet!), it been a very long way and so close after Bramham I decided to not bother. Instead he will be aimed at Burgham CIC***, Hartpury CIC*** then, fingers crossed, hopefully, toes crossed… The big one to finish the season!
Until next time ?
Much love,
Charlotte and Super Si

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Katie