(scroll down for am & pm twice daily updates)
[UPDATE: videos of Lexie jumping can be found on my Devon Diary Blog - click here ]
At about 7.45 a.m, my daughter Kathy, husband Adam and two horses, Lexie and Saffie set off for Hickstead, near Brighton in Sussex. It'll be a drive of about four-and-a-half to five hours. Following behind, loaded with equipment (including horse feed and bedding, camping stuff, and three saddles - one a side saddle) Ashley, family friend and groom for the week.
|The main, International, Arena|
(Kathy will be jumping in smaller arenas - not this one!) (thank goodness!)
|Kathy with top show jumper Geoff Billington|
in our kitchen January 2016
|On The Road - the horses in the horsebox|
I'm worrying about them getting there safe. Travelling with horses is a hard drive and there are so many idiots on the road.
I'm worrying about the weather. Camping in a field and competing in atrocious downpours is not exactly pleasant. Or safe.
I'm worrying about Kathy competing. Those fences at Hickstead are enormous, and she will be taking part in two classes per day.
|Saffie Hickstead 2015|
For Lexie this will be her first time at Hickstead. Will she cope?
|Lexie - Area 16 Sidesaddle champion 2015|
I'm worrying about the horses hurting themselves.
I'm worrying about Adam's troublesome back
I'm worrying about Ashley (actually, no idea why, he's not a son or son-in-law! )
|Amateur Derby 2001 (Kathy riding El Gaupo)|
So I am relieved, now that its Adam's turn to be Head Groom for his wife, not me for my daughter as I don't think I could manage that hill, or the camping out, now. All the same. I wish I was going with them. I'm ewxtremely proud of Kathy. We've never been able to afford quality horses, or to compete at the sort of level that would take her to the top - showjumping is a very expensive sport. She's had knocks and disappointments, We've had horses we had high hopes for, but they didn't turn out to be as good as we thought. But like a true trooper Kathy has kept going because she loves the sport, loves her horses and - yes I know she's my daughter, but she's good at it. Which is important as, being severely dyslexic she was regarded (by the education system) as a failure. I pulled her out of school when she was fifteen so she could follow her heart and her horses. She was good with horses. Good at jumping. Costs us a fortune to keep her goingb though. (Thank goodness for my books - buy a book or two and support Kathy's showjumping and the ambition of fulfilling her dreams!)
|Keep in mind that those wings are bigger than me - I'm 5ft 3!|
|Riding Lexie side saddle|
I don't care about rosettes and winning, or staying dry, nor getting tired and having sore feet.
Just stay safe all of you. (And have a nice time.)
Information about Hickstead
|'Are we there yet?'|
The girls waiting to come off the horsebox
|Settled into their holiday accommodation|
(Lexie just about fits through the door)
|The course for Lexie Wedn esday|
Class 107 The Hickstead 1m Open
Don't like the look of that blue water tray...
Question is - will Lexie notice it?
Update: 1pm one worry ticked off: they're all there safe & sound. Course walked for Wednesday a.m.
10 a.m. Lexie, just 4 faults (one pole down) in her first ever class at Hickstead (1 m. Open)
|Lexie (Shinglehall Casino)|
4pm: Saffie a prize pudding. Got way over-excited, ended up with 12 faults (three fences down). It would help to jump OVER the jumps not THROUGH them.... Oh well, tomorrow is another day.
|A relaxing Pimms|
Jumped both horses early. Saffie again over excited (very frustrating) 12 faults plus 2 time faults (no ideas how she got those!)
So, now we wait to see how they do tomorrow. Wish we knew how to solve the Saffie problem :-(
Saffie much calmer, just 4 faults (one down) but dreadfully muddy conditions!
Lexie got clear and through to jump off - just four faults at the very last - but YAY we got through to jump off!!!
and its not ALL jumping (or getting wet in a thunderstorm)
Amateur Derby - all the same fences as THE Derby, but at a lower height (1.15)
Kathy had 24 faults (6 poles down) but there's 15 jumps - a long course - and Saffie is not the easiest horse to ride. Point is Kathy finished the round (in one piece) so who cares about a few poles down?