Cara Shardlow’s Blog: Stepping up to Premier League!

It has been a month of extreme ups and downs for Cara Shardlow, juggling her own competitions and challenges with running a dressage series at her own stables, so she’s well and truly experiencing life on both sides of the arena fence! We caught up with her to find out more…

“After a slightly easy time after the Nationals, I finally made it to my first Premier League with Detonator. I had wanted to do two but Summeford were so full they closed the entries early and I missed out so we headed to Sheepgate in Lincs instead.”

“We did not have the best preparation as I lost my lovely homebred youngster Merena who was my next Detonator, she died while away being broken, I’m so gutted she was very special. Then on the Friday before my Grandad died after a routine operation, so I left on the Sunday not feeling my best.”

“On the first day I made two very costly mistakes in both tests, in the advanced I went wrong costing me a win but we did come 2nd, then in my first FEI PSG I carried my whip which you are not allowed to do and got eliminated, they marked my test and we would have got a 66.05% which would have been just outside the top ten, amazing as it was only our forth PSG test.”

“Then next day I had got my head together and Detonator was so well behaved, we gained just under 70% in the advanced and won then he did a lovely PSG with two blips but gained 66.23% and finished 11th, I was over the moon with the results.”

“My aim is to gain over 67% at a Premier League in a PSG, then I can apply to compete internationally for Great Britain. I will now have to wait until the high profiles shows in the Autumn but fingers crossed we will get that score soon, it would be a dream come true to get the GB flag on my jacket!”

“Rhythmic Times has had a very easy time since the Nationals, I’m trying to make the hard decision whether to semi retire him as I’m not sure he is enjoying the work as much now he is 16 and has struggles with health issues for a while. He is qualified for the summer regionals but I’m undecided if he will go or not.”

“Sandonista contested a young horse class which was at Elementary level the hardest test he has done, he was such a good boy and came 6th, he still needs to be stronger so I will continue to take it slowly with him and be patient. He won the novice class on the same day with just under 70%, he now needs some more good score as I might also aim him for the Home International in August.”

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“Measure for Measure has had a busy few weeks, going XC schooling a couple of times and for some show jumping sessions with Paddy Muir whom I used to work for. He is feeling fantastic and I think will be aimed at his first BE at the beginning of August if all goes well. Having said that, he is lame, I think with a hoof abscess at the moment which is so frustrating as he has still got a couple of Regional points to get before the end of June and is entered in a competition in two days time which is not looking good. He competed at his first elementary two weeks ago and was a total star gaining just under 68% and won, not bad for a coloured event bred horse!”

“Our Horslyx sponsored unaff dressage competitions have been going really well with record entries each time! There is only one competition left to go to decide the champions on the 3rd July and the points leader board is looking very tight in some of the sections, it should be a nail biting finish, there have been regular reports in the local papers and photos of some of our winners. The champions have some lovely prizes to win, very kindly given by Horslyx.”

“Hopefully the next few weeks will be less eventful and I should have been to the regionals by the time I write my next blog, so it’s full steam ahead to get ready for those, I can’t wait!”