BE 80(T) Little Downham (3)
Pleased, and mightily relieved that me and Ollie managed to complete our challenge and along with my fellow Wobbleberry Julie Broome, to have raised over £1,500.
36.8 for a PB dressage (we both struggle with nerves once we are in those white boards) was a good start to the day. With mounting nerves we headed for the show-jumping, I didn't hear the bell at first so started a bit on the back foot...Ollie settled quickly though and off we went. Just the one fence down because I over steadied him at the penultimate fence, and we were done. No elimination, as feared!! We were going cross country....shit!
Very quick change into XC gear for us both and we were at the warm up. By now I was wooden with nerves and Ollie clearly thought he'd done enough for the day. My 16 year old son was a gem - reminding me how to warm up properly and liaising with the start box steward as our last XC in May had seen Ollie have a major meltdown. Suddenly I am told it's 10 seconds to go and I start my stop watch (felt a bit of a twit, why was I even thinking about a watch, was I even worthy of trying to make the time, concentrate on the fences, girl!). 5,4,3,2,1 and we trot into the start box. Ollie is too busy spooking at the xmas trees to realise we have left the other horses in the warm up, and we are off! A fall at the first fence on a previous outing is still seared in my memory and so a quick tap with my stick and plenty of leg and we are over the first fence. We land and I feel Ollie go through several gears - it's the fastest we have ever gone but that's how the pros do it, heck let's just go with it. He gave me such an amazing ride, ears pricked the whole time. As we began to turn towards home (still clear, f***!) he got quite strong but was still listening and then before I knew it the last fence was in sight and we were over and clear. It went so quickly that I was convinced I must have missed fences out and was waiting to be told I had been eliminated. My noisy supporters confirmed I had gone clear, with just a few time faults and with it my Challenge was completed. Stunned!
So grateful for the opportunity to take part in the Wobbleberry Challenge- much learned, new friends made, middle-aged lady confidence boosted and a chance to spread the word about Hannah's legacy. #rideforHannah #kickingcancersbutt