The British Dressage National Championships were extremely emotional for me this year, as it was to be the last time I would compete Rio before he went to his new lease home.
The competition started with me riding Darcy (Don Carissimo) in the PSG. He was a bit tense and we did have some mistakes so ended up just out of the Top 10.
I then competed Rio in the Inter 2, our last competition together. He was a really good boy and tried his heart out for me finishing 8th.He does find the Grand Prix work hard and that is why I made the decision to lease him to Pony rider, Ottilie Bardsley. He will be able to drop down to Advanced Medium level with her and he will be in his element. Hopefully they will be selected for the Junior Team European Team at some point and I can go and support as an owner!!! :)
The Friday saw Darcy and I compete in the Inter 1. He wasn't as tense as the day before but sadly we still had a couple of blips but the judges still seemed to like what they saw and we were rewarded with a 70%+ score and 7th place, ensuring our place in the Inter 1 freestyle the next day.
The Saturday was a difficult day for me as Rio was picked up by the Bardsley's to go to his new home. I know he is still mine but it didn't make saying goodbye any easier.
Later that afternoon, I had to focus on competing Darcy in the freestyle. It was a new floorplan and music and I had never performed it in competition before. Darcy was amazing, he was so relaxed and with me bar a slight miscommunication in the 3's....thankfully I had a spare line to repeat them! I was over the moon to get a 72% score and come 8th. Not too shabby considering we were not going to try for Inter 1 until next year!
It was a really good show and there was even more excitement to come when I got home! Darcy and I have been selected to compete in the Mount St John Inter 1 freestyle Championship at the Horse of the Year Sho on Friday 9th October at the NEC in Birmingham. It will be a first for us both as I have never competed in such an electric atmosphere and I am so excited!