Yesterday I covered the top 10 in the Adequan USEA Gold Cup and PRO Tour Series Advanced Division at Southern Pines, and now that I'm home in snowy Kentucky I have a bit more time to get to the remaining ten. Congratulations to Jimmie Schramm, above, who achieved exactly what she told me she set out to do at her first Advanced with Bellamy - get around and have a good experience. She was excited and a little nervous about such a milestone in her riding career, but she handled it beautifully and I'm looking forward to watching them both go on to bigger and better. With a couple of rails down on Sunday they completed in 17th place; once again you can find all the final results here.
Lizzie Snow was our first clear round of the day in the Advanced division, albeit with five time penalties, and rode out of the ring to loud applause. She rode Coal Creek beautifully to finish 15th.
Kate Chadderton was, as usual, busy all weekend with a bunch of horses in all the divisions and finished just inside the top 20 in the Advanced on Collection Pass.
Caitlin Silliman had a stop at the wall on Catch A Star and several rails after that and I talked to her afterwards to find out what went wrong. She told me that Hoku seems to have developed a phobia about the Puissance Wall, that she stopped at it at Southern Pines last year, and in the 3* at Plantation last autumn, "I felt bad for her. Show-jumping is definitely her weaker phase, she wants to be really careful, she's definitely not the type of mare that you can make have a rail in the warm-up to make her more careful, and I always get a bit nervous, so I think with a combination of it being on the grass, and the weather, and then the schedule got moved forward so we were suddenly a bit rushed. I showed her the wall when we cantered in, but she's really scared of it, and after her stop there , and then she had the planks down (the jump following the wall) she was really flustered, and I was just pleased and proud of her for getting round." Caitlin told me that they go home to Pennsylvania from Southern Pines and she'll spend some time doing smaller jumps and get her confidence back, and that she's already rung Katie Walker to see if they can borrow the Plantation Field wall to school over gently. Historically, Hoku's show-jumping has always been something of an issue which was why Caitlin was able to buy her in the first place, and it has improved beyond recognition, so hopefully this will just be a minor blip. Next stop for Hoku is The Fork and then fingers crossed for Rolex. Having won the open intermediate class fairly handily on Remington, I asked what the plans were for him, and Caitlin explained that the FEI rules mean that she will indeed have to go back and do a CCI**, "At first I was pretty disappointed because how many times in your life do you get handed a fit, sound four star horse, especially as Remi is a bit older, he's 17 now and I don't know how much longer he might go on for if he has to go back and do a two star and a three star? But Ron and Densey Juvonens, the owners of Remington and I talked about it, and they very nicely said that as long as he's enjoying it and as long as Seema Sonnad can continue to help paying his expenses they're happy for him to stay with me. Remington really doesn't owe anyone anything. We're really starting to click and to get to know each other so I'd like to aim him at the Jersey Fresh 2* and then perhaps a 3* in the Fall."
Caitlin Calder, who is now working with Jan Byyny, had an expensive show-jumping round to drop to 16th place on Jolliyat
Allie Knowles was our first clear round within the time on Last Call, and it was beautifully judged and ridden. I was also impressed by this pair on the cross country on Saturday; hopefully it will make the trip from Kentucky worthwhile.
Kate Samuels and Nyl Du Terroir - another nice clear, and one of the few to choose the option to turn left-handed after the planks and take the liverpool, above.
Colleen Rutledge and Shiraz getting some perfect British weather match practice in for Badminton! Two down though left them in 18th place.
Boyd jumped a lovely clear on Trading Aces, belying what actually I think is quite a painful ankle, not from the fall off Crackerjack but from his moped the night before; hopefully he'll get back to Pennsylvania and Silva will nurse him back to health, or knock some sense into him, or both!
Sharon White just had the last fence down and one time penalty on Wundermaske to finish 14th.
Many thanks again and as always to all the volunteers, the organisers, the grooms, connections, horses and riders. Many thanks to my friend who looked after Leo for me while I was away, and I'm sorry that he was so smelly, apparently, that he needed to be taken to the groomers! Not sure how I should feel - embarrassed, grateful, flattered, affronted? I have already made up my mind that Leo will stay somewhere else next time, well, he'll actually come with me, see you at The Fork Leo fans, but truth be told, it seems it may not even be up to me, she certainly didn't jump at the chance when I vaguely mentioned something about 'if or when I went away again' - harrumph, the cheek! But I digress! Thank you to Southern Pines for a fabulous weekend of competition despite the elements, congratulations to Will Faudree again, make sure to like his facebook page here, and GO Eventing!