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Badminton - cross country

08-May-2023 13:23
in General
by Admin

 Cross country day arrived and the course had taken a real hammering from a lot of rain on Friday.  So riders were naturally quite concerned about how the horses would cope. Alterations had been made, in my opinion not necessarily the right ones.

Grafennacht was feeling on great form but I had no idea how she would cope with over 11.5 minutes.  It had become quite obvious no horses were going to do the time.

As the day unfolded the course was clearly causing trouble and I was quite concerned about how she would be feeling.  I needn’t have worried, she coped in a terrific fashion. I knew the time was not possible so the course was very much riding the horse you were on.  I really couldn’t have hoped that she would go much better.  She was less experienced than many, but really rose to the challenge and answered the questions.  I had a lucky moment at the Holland Cooper owl hole, but she was spot on with finding her fifth leg.  She was naturally down on her minute markers but she lost a little more time in the last three minutes.  She happily finished with plenty of running and it seems to have taken nothing out of her body.  She trotted up really well last night, Andy Bathe was more than happy.  She also had her usual physio session from Lily Jackson.

I have just walked the show jumping course and it is pretty decent, so she will need to be on her best form after lunch.

The course naturally fed plenty caused of trouble, several didn’t start as some horses just don’t got in the mud, some got tired and pulled up and plenty of horses were eliminated on course for all sorts of reasons.

The course caused trouble throughout, there was no one fence.  It had been designed in a way to really encourage quick reaction for the horse and rider, to adapt and then kick.  Not many people jumped my favourite fence at the lake, and only one of the 6 who tried it had the pin.  So maybe it wasn’t as fragile after all.




© 2013 William Fox-Pitt. Photos copyright of William Murray in partnership with Fox-Pitt Eventing. With contributions from Kit Houghton, Fiona Scott-Maxwell, Julia Shearwood, Gavin Hudspith, Ian Loveland & Adam Fanthorpe.

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