• Jacky Green

Rockingham International

Photo: Charlie Birch with his puppy. Believe it or not it has the highly original name of Woofie. Credit Hels Tagg.

A couple of hours drive northwards to the lovely venue of Rockingham which hosts huge CIC one and two star classes alongside a host of other national tracks. Sammi had Debonair ( Dee) and The Kincooley Ceili ( William) on board leaving #naughtyGizmo at home to bask in the sunshine and the peace and quiet. Except that it probably was not so peaceful as the plan had been to leave Charlie at home with Ed!

Dee is not blessed with the most stunning outline in the dressage and although beautifully schooled Sammi had decided that perhaps a double bridle may help her cause. It did not! In fact, if anything, it made the whole test a zillion times worse! Sam simply had to sit still and get through the motions while Dee made his dislike of the double evident to all and sundry. Sammi described it as " awful" which is Sammi speak for this is what ordinary mortals have to ride in the dressage everyday as the score of 37, while not good for Sammi, is a fairly average score at CIC 2 star!

William doesn't find the dressage as easy as the other two phases but having watched Dee humiliate Sam he tried really hard for a 28 in his section. Only 7 horses in the whole section scored sub 30 so that was a good effort.

Saturday dawned bright and sunny and with the ground drying out fast now after the biblical rain we have endured this winter it was time for t shirt and shorts. Unless you are riding in which case you don long socks, boots, shirts, jackets, plastic number holders etc...None of which put Sammi off jumping two super clear rounds on William and Dee.

Off to the cross country and Dee must have been somewhat shocked to discover that Sammi means business this year and she set out on a mission. Dee has been allowed to mature slowly by ambling round allot of tracks but now he has had to wise up a bit quick! After a minor disagreement on a stride to a table which Dee thought he had won until he hit it quite hard and it turned out Sammi was right he did indeed sharpen up and he came home well for just 4.8 time which elevated him into the top 12.

Not to be outdone William cruised around to come home clear just one second over time which was good enough for a podium position in 3rd. Sammi is flying again and has been proved quite right in her decision to delay the start of her 2018 season.... all the rest of us have done is enter, pay abandonment insurance, re enter, delete and repeat anyway!

has to step up and

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