Jass seems to be settling in really well and we seem to be forming a rapport quite quickly. He has had a lot of change in the last few months as the requirements for grade 3 are quite different to that of grade 2 and my disability is very different to Jo’s. Jo had ridden him for 6 years and they knew each other inside out, so it will take him a while to really trust someone new. Equally, Ollie had been my sole horse for such a long time, it will take me a while to find a new feeling and trust in him as well, but it is coming together much quicker than I thought. In fact, we did our first para competition last weekend and it went rather better than expected. He is such a pro and does everything he can to help me out. I felt quite disorientated during the test, but he still kept listening and trying. It is the first time I have ever ridden another horse with my blacked out glasses on in a test so I think it will take a while for me to get used to the new feel. We had 1 major mistake where I un-balanced him in canter and he put in an un-wanted flying change, but the rest of the test felt quite good. Despite our mishap we ended up with a score of 71.8% which was the highest score of the whole day! Not too bad for our first attempt…
His owners, Bob and Hazel, came along to watch and support and they seemed quite chuffed. It was a very hard day for them as that would have been the first time they have been to a competition without Jo. So it’s up to me now to prove to them that they made the right decision in giving him to us on loan.
Ed is also going really well. We have been trying to take him out to different venues so that he can start to see the World. He has not competed yet, but hopefully it won’t be long. I feel completely confident with him at home now, but I am still a little apprehensive when we take him in the lorry, so I until I feel ready we won’t push it. I am so excited about his future that I am nervous to do anything that might upset him unnecessarily. He is still very young so we can afford to take our time and hopefully get it right.
I also have a new trainer, Zoe Colgate, and whilst she has only helped us a hand full of times it appears to be going really well.
We have squad training in a couple of weeks, then another para qualifier and then we are going away on a well needed holiday!