It's been a quiet October for Yeti as she has had a few weeks off competing and enjoying some time to relax. Padmay, on the other hand, has been out almost every week!
Firstly, we took her to West Wilts on the 4th October where we jumped the British Novice and the 95cm open. It was Padmay's first experience indoors but you would never have guessed! We came 3rd in the BN, and had an unfortunate run out in the first phase of the 95, but continued to jump clear around the rest of the course and the jump off. Sadly, I didn't get any photos at this show so here is one of her jumping at home 2 days before we took her to West Wilts.
It was a busy weekend for Pads as the next day we took her to Glanusk for a fun ride, which she has never done before. She took it all in her stride and jumped everything, including several BE90 fences.
We had no competitions the following weekend as my mum and I travelled up to the University of Liverpool for an Open Day. I absolutely loved the Uni and it is one I will definitely be applying to! It's been 4 years since I've been to Liverpool so it was nice to go back and I'm now looking forward to returning in November with Yeti for the Amateur Finals! Here's a photo from last time we were in Liverpool - at Aintree with Yeti for the Eventers Challenge Championships - fingers crossed there's no snow this time!
On the 18th, we took Padmay to West Wilts again. This time we jumped the 95cm and the Discovery. Pads jumped a super double clear in the 95 to come 2nd, and then went on to come 3rd in the Discovery! I remember saying to my mum as I warmed up that she was feeling great that day, and it showed!
This is Padmay in the Discovery - apologies for the blurry-ness!
On the 25th we headed over to The Hand Arena in Bristol, this time just for 1 class which was the 95cm Amateur Qualifier. Pads jumped clear however we didn't get placed this time, but she has improved so much and is jumping much better which I am so pleased about!
I spent the week of half-term milking at a dairy farm. As I hope to become a Vet I need to gain as much work experience as possible: a minimum of 10 weeks! I had never worked with cows before this so it was a new experience but I really enjoyed it, especially hand-feeding the calves!
On Saturday 1st November, we took Padmay to Summerhouse EC for the Brirish Novice and the Discovery. Unfortunately we had a stop at fence 4 in the BN which I think was due to the horses in the warm up causing a distraction as Pads came around the corner. This fence seemed to cause a problem for quite a few people. However, Padmay jumped really well and clear around the rest of the course and the jump off (the class was run as Single Phase - despite having poles/refusals in the first round you can continue into the jump off which I think is a great way for young horses to build experience). We then had a pole in both phases of the Discovery, but Padmay felt quite tired as she has had a very busy few weeks.
The next day we took Yeti to Badgworth Arena for the National Amateur Second Rounds. This time it was for the 95cm class. I was so so pleased when Yeti jumped a double clear to come 3rd in a competitive class to qualify for Aintree, again! To qualify in one class was good enough for me, let alone 2 classes - qualifying both times at our first attempt.
So plans have now begun for Aintree - the Dodson & Horrell National Amateur Championships is from Wednesday 19th to Sunday 23rd November, but we will be missing the Wednesday classes because I am studying my AS levels so can't miss too much time off school. But Yeti and I will jump Thursday, Friday and Saturday and these classes will be qualifiers for the Grand Prix, and if we qualify in either class we will jump again on the Sunday in the GP! We will be packing plenty of Likit treats & toys to keep Yeti occupied as she will have to be stabled for 4 days and 4 nights at Aintree.
On the 8th November I took Padmay for a lesson with Geoff Billington. It was going really well until the end of the lesson I came off (at quite some speed) and got my left foot caught in the stirrup. This was the first time I've ever fallen off Padmay - how embarassing! Luckily Geoff has a great sense of humour! In the morning I went to hospital for X-Rays - no broken bones, just a very lame Gaby! Now, 2 days later, it is feeling much better and I can walk on it.
Other plans for November include gaining more work experience in veterinary physiotherapy and lambing, and possibly some other competitions - we have been so busy making plans for Aintree that I'm not quite sure what else we are doing this month! Also, it is my birthday on 1st December and I will be 17 - I'll finally be able to drive!