It is time to reflect on our weeks in Spain. The horses I have been riding for IN Showjumpers have all without exception developed and benefited from our two months at Oliva Nova and the Sunshine Tour … or the “Rain Tour” as I think the 2018 Sunshine Tour will forever be known! However, the rain didn’t manage to dampen our spirit, thanks to my 4 legged friends!
Although it is always difficult to pull out the stars of the show, as they all jumped their socks off, the two that were exceptional were the two horses I mentioned in the last update, L’Artiste De Toxandria (Toulon x Kashmir)and Cooper (Viento Uno W x Voltaire)
I have ridden and trained L’Artiste since he was bought by IN Showjumpers as an unruly four year old from a farmer's show in Belgium, at that time his body looked like it belonged to 6 different horses! Believe me; he was a long way from an oil painting! Three years of quiet training and selective competing, giving him time and the correct exercises to develop, he is now strong, balanced and beautiful! Not to mention with SO much scope! Now heads turn whenever he canters into the arena, and you feel he could jump the Olympics already! For sure one day he will be a championship horse, but for now, I feel proud and lucky to be entrusted with his training and competing as he steps up to the next level.
Cooper has come of age and has helped me do the same! He has given me the chance to develop from a 3-day event rider to being a competitive and confident 1.50m showjumper. He is so careful and brave. I simply love him!
Also, I want to say a HUGE thank you to the team who have kept the horses I ride in such amazing condition during the tours, without their dedication and passion to the welfare and management of the horses it would not be possible to maximise the potential of all the horses I ride.
Now I am heading home to focus on a number of very special six year olds which we are taking to the two-week tour at Sentower in April.