Bonnie Fishburn’s blog: Getting the top hat and tails out

In her latest blog, Horslyx Ambassador, Bonnie Fishburn tells us how she is battling with the weather, but still managed to get her top hat and tails out for a CIC*…

“So we are now into June and the weather is still causing us eventer’s grief. I have lost a few runs because of the wet and it looks like we have more rain on the way. Frankie and I went the European CIC** Training Day at Aston-le-walls in April and he behaved like a little star, particularly in the team of 6 dressage test, he was used as the lead horse and I thought did an excellent job.”

“He was quite fresh to jump but really jumped well. I have recently heard back from the selectors and they have said he hasn’t been chosen at this stage but to keep them posted with what we are up to and what results we get, because if we were to pick up some good form at Intermediate events then we could still be considered to join the team training.”

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“A few days after this we headed to Kelsall Hill for our first event of the season. We had entered the Intermediate and walking the course I found myself thinking maybe the Open Novice would have been a better first run, the fences were big and bold with a few quite tricky combinations. He was rather hot headed in the dressage for 36.8, he then showjumped very well but just had a couple down, probably more my fault then his, I hadn’t jumped such a big course for a while but then cross country he was an absolute saint, jumping a foot perfect clear and taking all the straight routes. I had decided I just wanted to have a nice run as it was our first Intermediate since are bad fall last year. Although we didn’t go for the time at all he actually only picked up 10.4 time penalties. Such a brave and honest boy, I was so happy with his performance.”

“Percy and Florence headed to their second event of the season at Bradwall at the end of April. Percy was a little excitable for the dressage and got a 33.5 but then jumped a fab double clear, he really is turning in to a bit of machine cross country, so bold and brave. He finished up 9th. Florence was marked a little harshly for a 33 because she really did do a foot perfect test. Her showjumping was impeccable and clear but cross country I felt where the going went a little heavy she lost a little it of confidence, probably remembering her run at Stafford where the going was terrible, so had a couple of stops half way round but then got going again and finished the course well.”

“Next was an outing for Florence and Percy again to Llanymynech. Florence again did a very nice dressage test for 35 in a harshly marked section, jumped another awesome showjumping clear and was back on form cross country, clear inside the time for 3rd place. Percy did a wonderful dressage test for 32, a really unlucky 8 faults sj and another outstanding run cross country, clear in the time. His 8 faults show jumping cost dearly to knock us out of the top ten.”

“At the end of May Frankie and I headed to Brand Hall International Horse Trials for the CIC*. I let him down a bit in the dressage by having a satnav malfunction and turning off the long side a marker too early to do my rein back, then my top hat nearly flew off in our half 10m canter circle so I had to tap it back on quickly which mad us lose a bit of balance. But the rest of it he was lovely. We scored a 56.6 under FEI scoring which is about 63%. The ground was quite sticky and holding and we had 3 showjumps down which was quite annoying but then he tried his heart out cross country on very tricky going and round a course that cause a considerable amount of trouble. I just found we couldn’t really get galloping in the sticky ground but actually our 10 time penalties weren’t bad in the section. We finished up 19th.”

“Now it’s time to cross our fingers and pray that we get a bit more dry weather, my horses really don’t enjoy this wet ground we are coming across, if it continues they may have to hunt this winter to get them used to it and I really don’t fancy doing that!”

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