It is a rare and unfortunate occurrence when the temperature is colder with us down south than it is at home in Pennsylvania. Such was the case this past Sunday morning as I walked my Training cross-country course at Pine Top Farm and the temperature was a blustery 22 degrees. Despite the frigid temperatures and brutal winds, Team Lily had a great weekend at Pine Top Farm's Winter Horse Trials.
Abigail Wilson had her second run of the season on Fernhill Flag in the JYOP and finished up in fifth place, just a few points out of the lead. Abigail is looking forward to having her first intermediate start at Pine Top in two weeks, so she went out on the weekend with the plan for a strong, confidence building run. The wind and cold temperatures did not lend to a soft and relaxed dressage test on Rory, but he made up for it by jumping a very clear and confident round in the show-jumping. She and Rory looked unimpressed by the preliminary questions on the cross-country as they cruised around with ease. I am very excited to coach her around her first intermediate in two weeks, as she and Rory are looking very ready!
The two young ones had their second competition of the year this weekend as well. Peace Proposal rode in the Training and Paddy the Caddy had a blast in the Novice. Both horses could have behaved better in the dressage, but were unfortunately very distracted by the heavy winds and cold temperatures. They made up for disappointing dressage tests by jumping very well around their show-jumping and cross-country courses. Both horses will be competing this coming weekend at Paradise Farm with their owners' watching, so the pressure will be on!
The highlight of my weekend was, of course, Bucky's first run of the season at Intermediate. He was very excited to be out and competing, and he felt on his game for all three phases. He was very steady in the dressage and scored a 34, which left some room for improvement before his Advanced in two weeks. He jumped very well in the show-jumping, and just had an unlucky last rail down. I was most pleased with the way he cruised around the cross-country, as we set off to have a smooth and steady first run of the season. He did just that, jumping very smoothly and finishing about 45 seconds over the optimum. He felt great around all three phases and I am looking very forward to our Advanced run at Pine Top in two weeks!
I now have to focus on being prepared for all our Team Lily visitors coming down for Paradise Farm Horse Trials this weekend! Stay tuned for updates on the weekend . . .