Saturday November 25, 2017
Dengie Winter Championships 2017

Novice – Jemima Harbottle and Cadifor Byron

With Ronnie having been sold the day after we qualified we felt very lucky that his new owners had agreed to let us take him to Addington, but we were a bit unsure how he would go given that he had only just moved to a new home.

We picked him up in the morning from his new yard – a bit later than we had anticipated as I had left my hat at home – and headed to Addington.  I felt quite nervous when it hit home that this was actually a Championships and everyone looked so smart and impressive.

We were in plenty of time so we had a chance to allow Ronnie to take in his surroundings and get used to all the flags!

He warmed up beautifully and I was pleased with his test, but was thrilled and surprised that we were in the lead at the half way point.  We went to have some lunch and were hanging out at the trailer when someone came up to us to say we were 2nd with a score of 72% and needed to get ready for the ride off!

We were 2nd to go in the ride off and this one was inside with proper white boards, flowers and 2 judges and I’m not sure who was more nervous me, Ronnie or Mum!  I have to admit nerves were kicking in and the person before me had just gone in when Vic and Tash Bailey came round the corner as they were there to Show Jump later that afternoon.  A quick 5 minute pep talk from Vic and a joke with Tash made me feel much more relaxed.

We thoroughly enjoyed doing our test and I did feel that Ronnie got better as we went along and he rose to the occasion.

In the end we were 3rd overall with a score of 70.1% but only 0.8% behind the winner so I was really pleased. It was great fun doing a mounted prize giving and a lovely way to finish our time together.

A huge thank you to Jo Baker Tuck and Zara who despite having been on early in the day waited to support and also to Sarah Stewart for helping me turn my hunter in to a Dressage Diva!

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