It’s been a pretty busy start to the year, but then again it is an Olympic year so we have to try and get the horses campaigned for selection.

So far my top level horses Wanadoo and Nip Tuck have been out to Spain to get a bit of sun on their backs! We had productive and successful outing – but old age caught up with me in the GP Special on the final day and took the wrong turn going down the first centre line! An embarrassment to say the least but we came a very credible 2nd with 75.02% and I was delighted with Barney. In the Grand Prix on the first day it had rained so much that we were performing in vast puddles. Good job he is used to the UK wet weather and hacking through the puddles around the roads near us at home! He got a credible 2nd in that class with 74.78%.

Wanadoo pulled out all the stops coming 5th in the Grand Prix and winning the GP Freestyle with 75.15% using my old faithful Tom Jones music on the Saturday.

Charlotte took Barolo (Rolo as he is known at home) who had a great show coming 3rd in the Grand Prix with 73.28% and this is his first international outing at GP so we are delighted with him.


Some of our other younger horses have also been out qualifying for the Winter Championships. Hawtins Delicato (Del) got a fantastic result under Amy Woodhead in the Medium Open so we will see how he does at Hartpury in April.

I have been over in the USA for a week in February helping my pupil Katherine Bateson at the Dressage Masters in Florida. We are hoping she will get chosen for the USA team for Rio – but as with the UK there are still a few shows to do yet for the selectors to see how they get on.

We are now focusing our sights on Windsor in May as our next big outing. I love Windsor and as it’s the Queen’s 90th Birthday this year I think that Windsor will be a very special show.

I hope you are all starting to plan your own competition season now that spring is just around the corner. Get your show jackets out, polish those competition boots and get your white bandages washed! And don’t forget to get your horse fit and ready for the shows ahead. Ensure they are on the right feed, get lots of exercise and turnout and their saddles and tack fit!

Oh and make sure you know your test – don’t do what I did in Spain and take the wrong turn down the centre line…