I don’t think I ever sit down to write one of these without thinking how busy the past few months have been. Sorry for the radio silence and missing last months blog, everything has just been so busy that I have not been able to keep up with myself. Uvi and I have been here there and everywhere whilst Kai has been ticking along nicely at home, and the start of June also saw the back of my exams.
Uvi and I had our two selection trials at Somerford and Hickstead Premier Leagues. Starting with Somerford which was a hectic one as it was smack bang in the middle of my exams, Uvi did a lovely clean test though to get a PB at the level. Then onto Hickstead which luckily fell after my exams had finished, Uvi did another consistent test so I could not have been happier with him. I unfortunately made some costly mistakes, but we live and learn and try to improve so they won’t happen again.
The week after Hickstead we then got the very exciting news that we had been selected to represent Great Britain on the Young Rider Team at the European Championships in Italy. So it literally became all systems go to get everything ready for the long journey we were about to take. Unfortunately, the week before we were due to leave for the Europeans we lost my Grandma to her brain tumour. So, we did have to take a little time as a family to have her funeral and celebrate the amazing woman she was. This just meant that we had to speed pack the day before we left and then got on the road Monday to pre-European camp at the lovely Pidgley’s home.
Every time you pull up to Kilbees farm you are always amazed by just how beautiful the facilities are there and we are so grateful to Sarah and Tony for allowing us to have our camp there. Camp involved lots of things from training with Paul Fielder to vet checks with Rob Oulton and team building fun with the other girls. We had a lovely few days and managed to get everything organised and packed onto the Parkers lorry so that Fred from Parkers International was ready to drive the horses to Italy for us with our two super grooms Lizzie Walsh and Ollie Davies.
The horses had a 3-day journey to get to the show ground in Italy where we then were able to set up camp and get the horses settled. Mine and Rebecca Bell’s parents were absolute legends and took on the mammoth drive in our own lorries to Italy so that they could create a camp onsite for us all to be at at the show ground. So thank you Mum, Dad, Caroline and Danny for all your hard work making camp happen. The horses settled really well and Rob the vet did everything to make sure they were on top form as unfortunately Uvi got bitten really badly on his journey out there.
As a team we flew out on the Saturday as our parents and horses had arrived at the showground on the Saturday. We then got to our hotel and got settled ready for the week ahead. I can honestly say I had one of the best championships I have been to with some of the best people. We had a laugh from start to finish and although the riding didn’t always go to plan unfortunately Uvi got a little unsettled before his team test we made the most of it and learnt so much from the experience. I was so thrilled to place best Brit in the individual test and I could not have been happier with how Uvi at 18 years old coped with the long journey out there and then the heat.
We are all now safely back home and I am still wading through washing trying to get on top of all of the work I have missed. I am back working at the pub and teaching again so it is straight back to reality, but it does feel nice to be back to normality again.
I would just like to finish by saying a massive thank you to each and every person who has helped me and Uvi along our journey this year you all know who you are, and I will always be forever grateful.