The venue boasted stunning views with lovely weather -apologies to the show jumpers who had rain the following week.
Kat and Nick came 4th in their arena. This was a great result made even more remarkable because Nick broke his leg in the field five years ago. He had a protracted recovery and Kat, and we, are extremely proud of her miracle horse for being able to compete in dressage competitions at all never mind representing VVRC at Area.
Caroline took Ulis De Vassy and her mum Ruth went along as groom (we couldn’t manage without them). Caroline entered P12 as an individual. Vas warmed up well, did his test and Caroline was super pleased with him for doing one of his best tests to date. They then had to wait for the scores! They were worth the wait as they got 66.85% and finished 2nd. As the winner was part of the winning team, this meant qualification passed down.
Unfortunately, Caroline didn’t attend the Championships after a little incident at the RoR Championship held at Aintree Racecourse. Vas thought he was back at the racetrack evoking bad memories of his racing career. This upset him so much Caroline decided not to take him to Lincoln the following weekend (a 3hr plus drive). Vas is now on his winter holidays.
Vas is 11 years old and ran a total of 58 times (over hurdles and chase fences winning 8 of his races. He last ran in a steeplechase on 16 December 2018 so Caroline has done an amazing job of getting him this far in such a short space of time.
Winter Area 20 dressage
This is in November and I will be sending out more details nearer the time and hope to get some entries.
Summer Dressage League
We have had a mixed summer with this. We have had to cancel a few due to bad weather and in some cases too few entries. Hopefully next year we can revamp and have more people coming along to enjoy some low-key dressage in a friendly atmosphere .
The Wobbleberry challenge is for “middle aged, wimpy riders to compete at a BE80 and raise money for the wonderful Willberry Wonder Pony – inspired by Hannah Francis”
“A shy, elusive creature, the wobbleberry’s natural habitat is spectating at BE events, and supporting other riders
– not currently fit enough to get round a cross country course
– not currently brave enough to get round a cross country course
– old enough to know better, and know that this will hurt!
– dedicated – to raising money, to training, and conquering the fear
– supportive of each other – aiming to be weeble-esque, “we wobble, but we don’t fall down”.”
Dammit. That had me written all over it!
I have had the goal of competing at a BE90 since I got my first horse Uni way back in 2000 but we never achieved it.
Sadly, Uni does not share my enthusiasm for competing, she prefers to stay in the warm up ring with the other horses. I have genuinely been eliminated at jump 1 more than any other person on this earth (I even broke my thumb getting eliminated at jump 2 at my first and last affiliated British Showjumping Novice competition). About 8 years ago, I decided to retire Uni from competition and concentrated on finding myself a second horse who would help me achieve my dream.
In March 2015 I met and fell in love with Gus, 17 hands of gorgeous gingerness. He was PERFECT. A gentleman and very laid back. THIS IS IT! I thought, I will manage that BE90!
His temperament is fantastic, so we started training and I started regaining my confidence on the big man.
When I saw the Wobbleberry challenge I knew I had to sign up.
Gus was diagnosed with Navicular Syndrome in January 2017 and we started on a long road of barefoot rehab and the Wobbleberry Challenge and a BE90 once again became a distant dream.
Later that year I had the unbelievable good fortune of being able to loan Alton, another big gentlemen and we were back in the game.
Alton has a fantastic temperament, like Gus, and he really helped me to get my confidence back, but the thought of jumping anything larger than a log came and went.
In 2018 though we completed the 80cm Hunter Trials at Berriewood and came 7th in the BRC HunterTrials at Llanymynech, so full of positivity, we entered the BE90 at Llanymynech on the August bank holiday weekend.
You’ll remember we had a fabulous hot summer last year, except on the day we were competing we had torrential rain. It chucked it down. Still, we did a good dressage test and I flew around the show jumping with 1 down. Sadly on the cross country we had a stop at the first, and scrambled over the second and third, which is just not like Alton so I retired.
Another year gone.
At the start of 2019 Llanymynech (1) and Berriewood BE events were cancelled and feeling rather despondent and wondering whether I even wanted to do a BE90 any more the first half of the year just disappeared but then we went to VVRC camp and all that changed. We had an amazing time and were flying over all the 80 jumps like a pro.
Now I was in a quandary. I was talking to the vet while he did Alton’s vaccination, saying I couldn’t decide what to do or if I should be doing anything and he basically said, “ Just bloody get on with it and enter the 90 at Llanymynech!”. So as soon as he left, I did.
I had 6 weeks to go. I started C25k (again), got my mate to give me a circuits routine (she had me jumping jumps in the arena and rolling over bedding bales, and pushing my old garden roller around) and Alton and I had a cross-country lesson at Berriewood;he FLEW the 90 jumps so we were prepared!
It was a gloriously hot day and I tried not to think about the previous year. I was very pleased with our dressage, scoring 36.3, an improvement on the previous year, we flew around the show jumping and had one down again. Off to the cross country. Well, what can I say. Alton was AMAZING. BRILLIANT. He FLEW around the XC (we did have 1 stop at the owl hole but no probs on representing). I didn’t even have time to get scared, we were over them before I even saw them. He’s the best horse in the world.
Luckily for me, completing a BE90 also completes my Wobbleberry Challenge and we raised £275 in the process
So what will we do in 2020?
Who dares to dream?
Sara Wright and Alton
It was great to be back at Berriewood for camp again in early July. Berriewood has such fantastic facilities and a lovely relaxed atmosphere, it’s the perfect location.
A few early birds kicked off on Friday afternoon with a clinic to get the party started while the rest of the gang started arriving. Once we’d got our horses settled in to their lovely large stables and before people had a chance to pop a cork, Emily Price gave us a class in exercises for rider fitness which was a lot of giggles.
Saturday started bright and early and we each had two lessons of either flatwork, polework, jumping or cross country schooling in small groups. Our instructors this year were Elspeth Carr, Ticky Fletcher, Kim Webster and Janet Green.
In the evening we had a demo from Voltora trick riders, which was very entertaining and we all fell in love with the rather gorgeous Brugie.
We then had the chance to practice trick riding on a vaulting horse.
Rather you than me!
Saturday night’s dinner was provided by The Fox and was tasty and generous as usual, followed by some socialising helped along with a drink or two.
Sunday started bright and early again with beautiful weather and we each had two more lessons of our choice and before we knew it camp was over for another year.
This year’s camp was particularly good, with everyone leaving with a smile on their face, good memories and everyone looking forward to a rest!
Thank you to all of our instructors for your excellent tuition, to Justine James and Sally Evans for organising and to Berriewood for having us
Looking forward to seeing you all next year.
Presented by Liz and Emma Launder who very kindly offered to come and give our members an insight into the work they do.
Liz, who is an osteopath and rehabilitation specialist at Osteopathy for Horse and Rider focused on the influence of balance, stability and postural control on riding capability and explained how fitness and core stability interact to increase control of posture.
She went on to explain how this affects fatigue and the impact on the horse’s way of going.
It was very interesting to listen to Liz share her experience and knowledge; she works regularly at Hartpury College with riders from all disciplines and shared some of the work she has done with event rider Jonty Evans.
Emma, who runs ESL Remedial sports therapy and rehabilitation, spoke about a range of exercises and activities that can improve posture in riders. She also spoke about how she can help those dealing with poor posture, limited range of movement and pain caused by sports or exercise and focused particularly on riders.
The whole presentation was very informative and builds on what some of us have working on in our rider core strength and fitness classes with Emily.
We hope to follow this up with some sessions with Liz and Emma focusing on posture and biomechanics on and off our horses.
Also,thanks to a small donation from all that attended, we raised £40 for The Brooke.
Prize giving as usual followed our AGM in February of this year.
Rosettes and gifts were given to twelve of our members who have given more than sixteen hours of their time to help us run competitions. We are so grateful to them for their help as without them competitors could not compete.
The amazing twelve are:
Jane Walker and Lynda Haigh who have helped at all of our show jumping competitions.
Dee Sides and Jessica Jones who helped us with our show jumping and also worked for many hours pole picking at Area SJ last year
Lauren Lawley, Siân and Sophie Williams who helped their mothers run our Show Jumping at Radford’s last year
Karen Lawley and Babs Williams who very successfully ran our SJ last year
Izzy Roberts who has helped run our Dressage competitions
Alison Ollier our treasurer who has put many hours into looking after our accounts
Sally Evans who is our Helper of the Year. Sally is always ready to help out whenever there is need, she has helped in the organisation and been in charge of camp, helped with our dressage competitions and show jumping competitions and has put in at least 25 hours for us. She is a great asset to Riding Club
Retraining of Racehorses
Ruth Hurley who received a RoR trophy
Karen and Babs’s Show Jumping Awards
Rebecca Furniss who received a cup
Heather Jones and Zoë Chamberlain
Best Member Awards
Members are awarded one point for every Riding Club event which they attend but it does not include competitions as they have their own award
Anne Roberts who received a trophy
Erica Morgan and Zoe Chamberlain
Ali Harper, Sally Evans and Ruth Hurley
Summer Dressage League
Anne Roberts who received the Pimm’s Plate
Ali Harper, Amanda Hopwood and Zoë Chamberlain
Best Competitive Rider Award
Rachel Woolley who received a trophy
Dressage to Music
Well done everyone – we are very proud of you all.
Yesterday, our summer dressage league finally got underway.
It was a lovely evening of dressage with delicious pimms afterwards, the weather was good and the going excellent.
It was so nice to see our members out with their horses and I would like to thank our helpers for calling, writing and scoring, Alison Lewis for having us and judge Diane Hesketh-Jones for her constructive feedback.
The points after our first competition are:
Isobel Roberts The Wizard IV 9
Ali Harper Donovan 8
Sally Evans Sirius 8
Sara Wright Alton (coffee) 6
Anne Roberts Millie 6
Elspeth Carr My Top Diplomat 3
Caroline Hurley Chorister Girl 1
Ruth Hurley Chorister Girl 0
Zoe Chamberlain Douglas 0
Well done everyone.
We look forward to seeing you at our next competition on Thursday 20th June
BRC Arena Eventing Qualifier at Radford’s Equestrian. 27th October 2018
We entered a team for the 90cm Area Eventing competition at Radford’s. The team consisted of Rachel Woolley, Rebecca Furniss, Meg Higginson and Ali Harper. A few of us had not competed in a competition like this before or for a long time at this height and Becky and Ali were lucky enough to get some practice in the week before with Sarah Warner.
The course consisted of eight show jumps followed by eight XC jumps. The final “joker” fence was a show jump set at 10cm higher than all the other jumps. The course designers had done a great job designing a course that was very rideable which provided some interesting choices about which line to take and this did prove that those who were brave enough to ride the tighter lines made the optimum time.
As we all know, Radford’s is a great venue for parking and spectating and our times allowed us to walk the course together and to cheer our team mates on. We all got round and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
Our team came 4th and Rachel Woolley came individual 3rd.
A big thank you to our helpers, without whom these BRC competitions can’t run.
Once again we were invited to Wynnstay Oswestry Open Day and for a second time we chose to run a tombola.
Riding Club members were very generous with all the gifts they gave and we thank you all so much for your generosity.
We had a slow start to the day with our tombola and then in the afternoon it became very busy.
A team of members gave their time to help out and we all had a lot of fun.
Most of the prizes were won and at the end of the day we just had a few left for next year.
Thank you to everyone who helped out on the day and to everyone who supported us.
The good news is that we raised £200.00 from the tombola to which I added £100.00 from goods which I had been selling for the Brooke – so £300.00 was sent to the Brooke to support the good work they do with horses, donkeys and mules.