Janine Lamy

Better suited to cricket

Friday last week we had a lesson with Char. Between you and me I think she’s soft on Harry. All these serious dressage horses she trains and I reckon she has Harry as a pin-up! She brings him polos….they look into each other’s eyes….and Harry says “Grumpy Boy? Who me?!”. Another one of those situations when I describe how he’s been the horse from hell, Harry goes like a dream, she says “well I haven’t seen any of that today” and I feel like I’ve made it all up! She’s very good at getting into his head. Keep learning Lamy!

Then on Saturday we had another Carmen Court jumping clinic. A quieter affair than usual, but this meant I had time to ride Lily in the arena and what a superstar she was. She jumped everything first time, including the planks and the water tray – what a big brave pony! I was also delighted with Debbie Reeves’ Jazz. He was much more rideable and couldn’t have gone better (note to self ‘must steal for a party’!) Then there was John Evans – much improved, and the group of girls Rachel Stewart, Nicole Garbett and Morgan Schive – a noticeable difference to last month. Hoo hah! That’s what we like…

Lexie went to the vets on Monday for an ovarian scan and general check up. Martin is trialling her on regumate but Karen Coumbe’s money is on another stomach ulcer. We’ll see what comes out of the woodwork….We’ve also had the bad news that Rose absorbed her foal over the winter. She has been covered again this week though so fingers crossed for a successful outcome for them this time. I’m quite disappointed there’s no devil foal this year! We were expecting Ivy home this summer as we hear she’s starting to feel her age and Romy wants to go on and do more. However as I write this we hear that she isn’t quite sound…so she’ll be home in a few weeks for us to assess the situation and decide what to do next….Horses!

The one thing left for Lily to experience before a well earned holiday is a different jockey. Cue Martin to climb aboard. Last Sunday Sandra Stoddart saw Martin bending over at East Bysshe and thought it was me (I’m not sure I will EVER find forgiveness!). We were hoping Lily wouldn’t notice the difference either and she didn’t at first, then his ‘man aids’ to canter rather confused her and she pressed the ejector button! The DC remained in situ and other than that she was a cool dude. She will now have three to four weeks off, just to soak in everything that she has learned. It would be very easy to keep asking more and putting more pressure on but she’s been a total star and has deserved some chill out time.

And onto Mattingley for our first 100 today. Harry started the day by breaking a leadrope, not a great start. We then struggled with the flies and his balance in the dressage. You’d think we were trying to ride a test on a black run, not a mild slope! He did try his best but left me in no doubt that I have to find some grass to work him on if his balance is to improve. Then the jumping…..hmm. Well I thought he jumped the fillers really nicely. Unfortunately there were poles above them! Four down. FOUR! Groan. On the XC he was totally fab and it was quite an ask for his level of experience. A totally different horse, he was really relaxed and confident.  Unfortunately he was also rather hampered by his mother who rode to the corner thinking he was drifting left. Alas, I sat like a lemon and he carried on drifting left, right past the fence. Argh, what was I thinking?! I think we’d have been better suited to cricket today but nice to get out and try something more of a challenge. Plenty of homework required before another trip out though!

Lexie is off to Borde Hill, Lily is on holiday and Ivy is due home…

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May 22, 2010 Posted by | Carmen Court, Instruction, Our Horses, Results | , , , | Leave a comment

Big Goof

Well what a silly thing to say, enjoying the weather indeed. It has been horrid ever since. This morning I was scraping ice off the windscreen of my car only to see my hayfever tablets on the dashboard underneath – make sense of that!

We had a freezing cold day at Felbridge with Harry. Whether it was the cold or the spring grass I don’t know but he was certainly feeling bright. I got on, Martin let go of the reins and I was taken across the car park by a broncing bull with his head between his knees!! I had literally just put my bum in the saddle so I had my hands full of gloves, reins, whip and was lucky to pull him up before running someone down. Yet later on, having relaxed in the sun while waiting to jump, he started to wobble about so I looked down to see what was happening. To my surprise he was scratching his left ear with his left hind hoof, yes while I was onboard! Big goof. 

He jumped really well in the first class and I was very pleased. He’s only jumped about eight rounds ever and was feeling more rideable – hurrah! While warming up for the second class it started to hail heavily. We were in the small indoor school and my delicate little flower could not bear the noise on the roof and started throwing himself about like a runaway dinosaur while people on baby horses looked at me in horror. Needless to say in the second class we had reverted to feisty boy “shut up I know what I’m doing” and had a couple of rails. I think you call it ‘work in progress’.   

Election night I slept really well, assuming (as you would) that lying beside me was Martin. When I woke up my partner was grey and hairy, but there was also a faint smell of fox poo. Martin had stayed up all night to watch the results unfold and I had been sharing my bed with Ted. Ughk!

OK, it is cold but I think the spring grass is working its magic. Lily wants to do everything at three hundred miles an hour all of a sudden and Harry completely lost the plot on Tuesday leaping and bucking in the school. Felbridge should have been a warning – sometimes I am very slow on the uptake! With cross country schooling planned for Wednesday I had packed my parachute but actually I have to report that he was on his best behaviour. Seems I just can’t predict what’s coming next!

Lily has had very limited jumping experience to date, but I thought it was about the right time for her to be introduced to a small filler. Bless her – she really didn’t want to touch it! We have another jumping clinic day at Carmen Court on Saturday and it looks to be a quiet one so I’m hoping to take her in the arena with the course set up, even if only to ride around. It’s great that we can do this at home before venturing out.  

Next time I write Harry and I will have been to Mattingley for the 100. Talk soon!

May 13, 2010 Posted by | Our Horses, Results | Leave a comment

Stilebridge Champions!

Not the best of days, last Saturday Martin and Lexie were at our local event Nurstead. This is a lovely event and great that it’s only half an hour from home but it never seems to go right for him there. I taught in the morning, headed to Nurstead to watch Martin’s dressage, headed back to ride Lily and got back to Nurstead in time for the SJ warm up! Unfortunately it was not to be and Lexie said no thanks in the SJ early on. We now need to see if we can work out what she’s trying to tell us. She flew around the last two events so there must be something. If only they could talk….(although on consideration I probably don’t want to hear what Harry has to say!).

So quickly onto Sunday when both Debbie Reeves and Louisa were at winter dressage championships. Louisa and Strider did a fantastic job and won the Stilebridge Walk and Trot Winter Championships – what a clever boy, I was very proud having helped her with him from the beginning. Zalena who lived with us on schooling last year was also 6thwith her new owner Claire Carter which was lovely to see.  Then Debbie and Jazz were placed in all three Ingleden Park championship classes qualifying for the Trailblazer finals at Stoneleigh in the Novice and Elementary – top effort guys!

I left Stilebridge for Chilham where I had two groups schooling in the afternoon. The sun shone and the ground was amazing. I received a text from Kate Lawson to say she might be late due to lorry problems. I assumed that it wouldn’t start but later on it transpired that Kate had filled it up with unleaded – doh! In the same group, Sam Hemple had barely been on for ten minutes when an awkward jump left her with a broken and dislocated finger. Ouch! Despite all that, a good afternoon was had with some noticeable improvement in a few combinations on last time out while others found their feet after the winter break. The terrain at Chilham, like Eridge, is far more challenging than we give credit, not least for the trainer who marched around twice!

Today Lily was an absolute star. She had her first trip out ever, soaked it all in, took it all in her stride, tried her very best and brought the red rosette home with 67%. I am really pleased with her. Her eyes were on stalks when we arrived yet she didn’t put a hoof out of place. She’s so cool.

Next I have a non-horsey weekend planned and Harry gets some more jumping practise in before Mattingley. Am loving this weather!

May 1, 2010 Posted by | Instruction, Our Horses, Results, Schooling livery | Leave a comment