Ups and downs at Upton and Barbury

We last visited Upton House Horse Trials 7 years ago when Ellie did her first ever BE100 there, and it was a joy to be back!

The heavy rain showers added to the ground that had already been well-prepared by the event organisers. It was just Pure Trendsetter on the first day, doing her first run since Bicton and her only run before her first Advanced at Aston this weekend. We were very happy with her dressage, SJ and XC, although Ellie didn’t really enjoy going slowly (but she did say she had more time to think what she was doing!) They produced another double clear to add to Pure Trendsetter’s impressive record.

The second day didn’t quite go according to the plan of two steady clears. One ended with Ellie rolling off Kalico at fence 5 and walking home with her tail between her legs and a wry smile saying “sorry Mother, I missed”! Then Upsi Britannia thought he had jumped another double clear – but choosing the Intermediate hedge at fence 10 instead of the Novice earned him a technical elimination. They both go on to Dauntsey next week.

One busy day at home preparing for two days at Barbury, which resulted in a win for Upper Class Brit (Daisy) in the 100 and another super double-clear and 5th place for Williemina van der Goes-Petter’s Nicolai in his section. Both of these 5 year olds will run in their first Novice at Aston in August.

On Saturday Ellie downsized from her 17+h horses to Working Pupil Grace’s little 14h pony, having a lovely run in her first ever event with just one spook at fence 1. A super day for her. Working Pupil Georgia Woods was thrilled to finish clear XC in her second ever 80 on her horse Kitty, so a happy team all round.

Teke followed in the 90, but Ellie went wrong in her test and had an uncharacteristic dismount before doing a beautiful double clear. This lovely 5 year old mare goes to Dauntsey for her first 100.

Thank you to the team at Musketeer Events – we do love Barbury! Let’s hope it is back next year for the International. It really is the most beautiful setting for both riders, owners and spectators.

Ellie’s face says it all in this photo when Upsi opts for the Intermediate hedge!

Photo credit: Matt Nuttall Photography