BEu18s & Supporting the future of the sport - Frickley Championships Event Report
Last week we introduced you to Daisy who was heading off to the Under 18 championships down at Frickley Park, but how did they get on?? Read Daisy's post-event blog to find out...
We had the most fabulous week with the best team at Frickley Park competing in the u18 Championships. Team Scotland truly are a perfect team to be part of, making so many lifetime memories.
Player was a superstar all week. We arrived on the Wednesday and got him settled before the whole team met to collect our sponsored team kit. We were definitely the best dressed team and there was a lot of envy from other teams over our Apt Cavalier jackets!! A nice hack with the team (despite getting lost), rider briefing, Ros Canter demonstration and a quick browse round the XC kept us all busy on Wednesday afternoon.
Player was FULL of energy all week and felt amazing when hacking and schooling while we where there. We had arena familiarisation on Thursday, possibly his highlight of the week as he bounced around the arena; he disliked their taste in music!!
Our team did 5 fantastic tests on the Thursday with lots of PB’s to start the competition on a high! There were more stunning tests from the team on Friday with very consistent scores all round. Last to go for the team and it was Players turn to put his dancing shoes on. In 30 degree heat he did a faultless test for 28.1, I couldn’t have asked any more from him in the first phase. Our scores put the team in 5th and individually =3rd over night going into XC however the results were so close it was all to play for the following day.
Sue Hendry and David Gatherer deserve medals for the amount of miles they must have walked on the XC course walks they did with us! All of their fantastic coaching paid of with super rounds on Saturday from the team. We had great positive feedback from team members about how the course rode which was very helpful to everyone still to go XC. Player was last out the start box for Scotland, he was a joy to ride and went perfectly for me. The ground was fast and he didn’t waste any time anywhere finishing full of running and jumping clear and inside the time. Following an influential day of XC the team stood in 6th place and Player climbed one place to 2nd.
Every team member played such an important role in the recovery of each horse after finishing XC. It was vital to get them settled as quickly as we could and let them rest before SJ the following day. It was also a priority to make sure each horse was happy and healthy. In the evening, after our photo shoot in team kit we all did an unofficial trot up, each pony/horse looked fantastic.
It was a scorching week at Frickley however apparently you can’t have a proper Frickley unless it rains!!!! On SJ day, the final day of competition, the heavens opened. Thankfully the Scots are used to weather like this and the first clear of the day came from a Scottish rider!!! There really was no margin for error in the SJ, the team scores and individual scores were so close.
We show jumped in reverse order and the standard from Scotland was so high. Even after the long XC the day before the whole team jumped polished rounds. Player was immaculate the whole way through and made it a perfect finish to a perfect week by jumping a superb clear. His round secured a Team 3rd place - a podium finish!!!!! I am so delighted that Player finished on his dressage score maintaining his 2nd place - 0.7 of the leader! It’s fair to say that we couldn’t have wished for a better finish for Scotland.
A huge congratulations to ALL of Team Scotland. Everyone did Scotland and our team sponsors proud. We were extremely lucky to be so generously supported this year. Thank you so much to Apt Cavalier, Country Ways, Aberdeen Riding Club and Avonmill Equestrian Centre. We could not have got to Frickley without your exceptional support and we were all so proud to be representing you all - Thank You!
Our week has left us with incredible memories and friends to last a lifetime. There are so many thank yous to make,
firstly, to genuinely the most amazing u18 coordinators Rose and Lucy - we have all learnt so much from them both and they are exceptional role models to us all. They have given their support, dedication, commitment and fun to each of us; it is what makes Scotland’s u18’s a joy to be part of. Sue and David, who are top team trainers and inspire us with their course walks as well as bringing out the best in us and our horses in every phase! I was very fortunate to have my amazing Family, Alex Turnbull, Stevie Purves and Libby Lindsey all there to give endless help and support. Alex polished Player perfectly all week, Stevie captured the most beautiful moments, Libby from Physio Plus made sure I was pain free for each phase, my Mum who keeps the show on the road and knows Player and I inside and out and to my grandparents and neighbour Emma for keeping the ponies at home in tip top condition! Finally thank you to Player who is an absolutely incredible horse, a true legend who gives it his all every time and was insane all week!
Photos by Dave Cameron Photography and Stevie Purves Photography