Doug Payne: Saumur CCI3* Dressage Reflections + Video

Doug Payne and Crown Talisman currently lie in 4th place going into cross country on Saturday after dressage at Saumur. Check out Doug’s latest blog post, as well as video of the test. Be sure to follow Doug on Facebook and Twitter for much more on his trip to Saumur with Tali, who he owns in partnership with Larry and Amelia Ross.

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From Doug:

How cool is that?! Tali was excellent, not without room for improvement but he put in his best test to date!

I rode him earlier in the morning where we worked on basic suppling as well setting him up for the test. He was reasonably settled which had me hopeful for my 2:05 pm ride time. Just after we headed out to walk the first portion of the cross country putting us at the arena in time to watch Liz’s tests. She did not disappoint…they put in a very solid test which placed them 8th at the end of the day!

We finished up walking, the footing continues to improve. The countless volunteers have been working non stop to improve the conditions. The depth of the water with the amount of rain we’ve had was a big concern, but it is improving my the minute.

Following our walk and lunch, Jess and I grabbed a power nap at the car. The alarm went off and it was show time! I got changed and hopped on. I had ridden a lot this week, more than ever before leading up the dressage, so I wanted to be mindful that I didn’t do too much. I got on about 30 minutes prior and headed down to the warm up. He warmed up well and was just about as settled as he’s been all week. Good timing!

As I entered the arena he did get worried, but right back to the same suppling exercise I went. He returned to earth pretty quickly and put in the best test he’s had yet. Crazy to think that it could be a whole level more in time. I keep reminding myself to enjoy my time with him and of course I have to thank Larry & Amelia for their long time support. The day finished up and we’re sitting in 4th place, just a few points from the lead!

Following dressage we headed out to walk the course again. I finished up in time to head over to the trade fair for a bit and catch the riders meeting. Nothing too terribly exciting was discussed aside from permissible route options on a few of the combinations.

I plan to head out to the event in the morning, walk the course once more and get ready! Luckily for me I head out just after 4 pm which gives me 3 hours of watching the course being ridden.

Fingers crossed!

-D

View the rest of Doug’s blog posts here. And don’t forget to order a copy of his book by clicking the cover image below:

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