Janine Lamy

Off games

Well it’s been two very busy weeks fitting in Lily and Harry around normal lessons and teaching at camps. Normally I give the horses most of August off as I find it hard to do it all, but this year I have been determined to keep them going. The consequence of this is that I have been tired and tetchy, thoroughly delightful to be around, growling at Martin whenever he starts a sentence with ‘have you managed to…’!

Last week was my fifth year doing the jumping sessions at Chislehurst and District Riding Club camp. It’s a lovely camp to teach at, everyone trying their very best and they are always really supportive of each other. I always get lots of enjoyment seeing the progress through the week, and the lunches are amazing!

Part way through the week we got news that Lexie’s 28 day scan had revealed a heartbeat – woohoo! I mustn’t get too excited as I know things don’t always go to plan but this is fantastic news.  I also hear from Stud UK Euro that Rosie was scanned in foal, so everything crossed for things to go well there too. On the Saturday Martin moved Lexie from West Kington Stud in Wiltshire (where there is no winter broodmare accommodation) to Groomsbridge Stud in Cambridgeshire (where Lily came from). We know that Sally Forster at Groomsbridge pampers everything like it was a favourite pony in her back garden, and that is exactly what we want for our girl. She’s still looking rather fit and I imagine a rather well bred, curvaceous broodmare taking her to one side “this place is fabulous darling but you really must eat your greens…you’re eating for two now sweetie…”

While Martin was driving around the country in the lorry, we had a very busy Carmen Court jumping clinic. Debbie’s Jazz jumped like a star again, maybe a trip to Felbridge for the boy is looming after all. He had saddle trouble and was a little sore two months ago when he nearly had his Aunty Janine eating sand, so it’s good to have that behind us and be back on form. It’s great to see the progress in the regulars but also lovely to see quite a few new faces this time. I also jumped Lily in a group which is a completely new experience for her and she behaved brilliantly. Although very green, she’s feeling really confident now and at times was a bit of a cocky show-off!

Then came our Pony Club branch’s camp at Judd Wood nr Tonbridge where I have been teaching all week. Only a small number of Pony Clubbers in attendance but for me, one of the best camps we’ve had in years. A great bunch and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. By Monday lunchtime there had been a finger shut in a lorry door, and a trip to A&E for a key helper with a bang to the head. Fortunately the rest of the week mainly concentrated on keeping everyone dry overnight – not really the best weather for camping. Then on Thursday, a horrible incident….I managed somehow to put a salt and vinegar crisp in my eye instead of my mouth, not something I would recommend! Now I don’t want to get anyone in trouble but between you and me, I have picked my way through the camp Risk Assessment and nowhere does it assess the Health and Safety issues regarding crisp eating….

Harry made an appearance on Wednesday, the hack had been cancelled as my ‘sweeper’ had concussion (!) but he was still lined up to teach them how to lunge. I had started to question my judgement and was worrying he’d snack on some poor unsuspecting child, but he was an utter star, totally on the charm offensive, and I think he would have trotted circles around them even if they were doing headstands! Unfortunately when I came to ride him on Friday he was slightly unlevel. It looks like he’s throwing a splint which at six he’s a prime age for. There’s a rather large hot lump in the splint area on the outside of his near fore. So Harry will be off games for a while and I expect Smiths Lawn will turn out to be his last event this year – I’m glad he went so well and proved that he’s learnt so much. He will be one for the future… but so much for working my butt off for the last four weeks to keep him in work, typical – where’s the justice in that?!

Bonnie Kerr had a great result at Brook Farm BD this week with a win in the Elementary with over 67%. We took Oliver back to basics about a year ago and Bonnie has been very patiently waiting to see the upshot of her hard work. Typically the results got worse before they got better and I’m sure she wondered if we were doing the right thing, but she’s had two wins recently so I would say we’re back in business, plus some! I also hear from Zalena and Claire Carter that they have qualified for the Riding Club Championships at Lincoln in the riding test. That’s a fantastic effort. Zalena came to me as a rehabilitation following an injury and was re-backed and slowly brought back into work over the summer last year. She was a smart young horse and we sold her onto Claire on behalf of her owner Zoe Squirrel who also had an injury, and in less than a year together they have really got it together – top effort girls!

Today we took Lily to Felbridge to school in their arena over some jumps. She was a bit overawed by the arena there and very spooky, but after a little while really got into her stride and grew in confidence. More of this planned!

So that’s it, August is nearly over… I have to admit that I’m looking forward to the slightly slower pace of life that the autumn will bring, but am disappointed they’ll be no Harry parties for a while. That’s horses though…

August 29, 2010 Posted by | Carmen Court, Dressage trainer, Eventing trainer, Instruction, Our Horses, Pony Club, Schooling | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment