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My first season with British Dressage

This year we affiliated with British Dressage for the very first time. It has been a long-term goal of mine since I started horse riding three years ago and became interested in dressage. I have developed the most exciting partnership with my loan horse Diesel. He is a black, Dales x and has the most lovable nature. He is one of those special horses that has taught me nearly everything. Every day I feel so unbelievably grateful to have him at the yard with me.

Our season got off to a late start in May. We paid our membership with BD and started looking for some shows locally. Our first competition was held at Epworth Equestrian Centre on the Yorkshire / Lincolnshire border and we entered the Prelim 2 test as a Bronze level combination. It was our first trip to a new venue and as we had not travelled for a long time I thought it was sensible to ride the sole test to see how it went. Diesel was hoof perfect for the whole trip and we came home with an educational 61% and a third place in the class.

Our next competition came around a few weeks later and we travelled down to Eland Lodge in Leicestershire. Again, another new venue and an early start for us. We entered the Prelim 7 and Prelim in an attempt to get our qualifying scores for the Summer Area Festivals. The Summer Area Festivals are regional based competitions which give you a chance to compete at a national level at Somerford Park, Cheshire. Diesel was challenging to ride in the first test, a little distracted by the flower pots and generally not around my leg enough. Despite a few nice moments, it was another educational experience for us and we scored 63% which I was pleased with considering how badly I felt it had gone. Our second test was much better after a more successful warm up in the ring. This time we came away with a 67%, just missing out on the rosettes.

In our first season we achieved our 3 qualifying scores over 60% and qualified for the PetPlan Area Festivals at Port Royal Equestrian Centre at the end of August. We can’t wait to update you on our progress.

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