Because of the huge amount of entries at Carolina we left Tuesday morning. Dyson had a great dressage test—the only thing I could have improved may have been collecting him a bit for more uphill expression. Katie Lichten held the day's lead in the 1-star on a 39.5 with RF Luminati—talk about a proud coach! I went on Thursday with Rem; the horse is going to be so nice on the flat but I've had a hard time keeping her rideable in the ring. Carolina was the first time, other than her medium and extended walks, that I felt like we showed what we’re capable of. She’s a great mover and getting better with time, but the issue with her jumping is the same as her flat work—keeping her rideable and respecting my leg and following the reins is a work in progress.
The cross-country did not disappoint, and all the hype about Ian Stark’s courses was right on. You had to be bold and brave and everything was there to be ridden, not tricky, but you had to hold your line and be brave. The one thing they did change on the 2-star was to take the boat house out of the middle of the water, which was a good decision. When you’re locked into a distance because one of the elements is an immoveable bank, and the distance walks a bit awkward, you have to make a change.
Rem show jumped on Friday morning and it was certainly one of the most rideable rounds I’ve had on her yet. She was super fun! Dyson and Luminati did cross-country Friday afternoon. We went early in the division, and I didn’t realize how hard the time was going to be. Dyson was awesome and I was running for time, I just underestimated how quickly we had to go and ended with a beautiful round but two time penalties. Luckily, I was able to tell Katie about making the time and she had a great run, quite quick and really well ridden.
Rem went cross-country on Sunday morning. We had a good warm-up but were not the best starting out. The first jumps were quite close to the start box and I didn’t quite put Rem on task—rider error! It took me until fence five to get into a little bit of a groove, which was just in time for number six, the Stonehenge complex. She was all about it, and from that point on she got better and better on course. She was quite quick around and finished 7th. After that we had show jumping for the one-star and Dyson tried really hard and was clean, and Katie won with style, adding nothing to her dressage score.
We had a super fun weekend at Carolina. I loved the courses and I feel like the whole organizing committee there has really made eventing something special in this country. And what a treat to have live streaming! I really hope that other events will follow suit.
We’re off to Morven Park this weekend with the young horses and Alannah Galbraith, who’s been working hard for me all spring, gets to compete her horse for the first time. I’ll Iet you know how it goes!