Bonnie Fishburn - 2015 Starting The Year

As I probably say at this time every year, the first 3 months of a new year is my busiest time of year, all the horses are back in after holidays and it’s when I spend hours getting the horses fit ready for the coming event season, as well as clipping, mucking out and going to lots of little competitions for training etc…. One major change that has taken place for the start of this event season is that for the first time in their lives at the age of nearly 8 and nearly 9, Percy and Florence, my two homebred horses have had shoes on. I just felt towards the end of last season, when they upgraded to BE Novice that they would benefit from having the added bonus of studs, I’d always got away with it at the lower levels but now I’m asking more of them it seemed the right thing to do. They were both immaculately behaved for my farrier. 

We are now at the end of March and three of my team have just done their first event of the season and leading up to that they had all been to Somerford Park for the farm ride and also the cross country schooling. Our first competition of the year was at Rodbaston for the BE Jump Training qualifiers where I was 3rd, 5th and 6th on Florence, Crosbie and Percy picking up two qualifications for the championships. From there I went with the same three to Reaseheath for dressage, all very well behaved Crosbie gaining 67.9% in Prelim 14 for 3rd, Percy 73.26% in Novice 30 for 6th and Florence also in the Novice got 75.38% for 3rd, very pleasing results against strong competition.

We have also been to some BS competitions and it hadn’t been as straight forward as I’d hoped. Percy and Florence both took a disliking to Field House’s indoor, Percy jumping like he’d never seen a fence and jumping much too big and Florence stopped which is most unlike her, she usually loves SJ, so I took them the following day to Southview where they have jumped loads of times and they both jumped confident double clears, Percy picking up 5th place. And on the same day Crosbie went to Reaseheath for the combined training gaining a 68% in the dressage and making two baby mistakes SJ for 5th.                                                

After this the weather got colder so I didn’t rush to get them out anywhere it was a few weeks before we did go to our next competition. But next we headed to Southview for BS, Crosbie jumping his first affiliated class and put in a great performance in quite a decent and twisty British Novice just getting 4 faults. Florence was flying that day and loved popping round the Discovery double clear for 2nd narrowly missing out on 1st place. Two days after this we headed to Aintree for the BE JAS competition, not my greatest of days. Crosbie jumped nicely round the SJ part but was completely confused by cross country fences indoors. Florence was flying until I turned up a bit tight to a skinny and had a run out, then Percy also flew round but we just had the last fence down. 

Great photo taken by Ciara Doone Rush Photography.

Our next outing was to Southview for Arena Eventing. Crosbie did the 80 and 90 classes. Again in the 80 he jumped lovely round the SJ but got confused by the change to cross country fences half way round, so had a silly stop at the first fence and then jumped the rest nicely. And in the 90 he was much improved but lowered a couple of fences. Percy and Florence were on perfect form this day in the 100. Both jumping speedy double clears to take 1st and 2nd.