Monday News & Notes from Fleeceworks

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Sunday Suspense – with the rigours of Saturday’s cross country behind them, those surviving gather for the vet’s inspection and decision on soundness, enabling them to proceed to the final phase of showjumping. Horses and riders are beautifully turned out in front of a huge and knowledgeable crowd amid the regal surroundings of Badminton House, with the wonderful hounds of the @beauforthunt providing the background music. @bhorsetrials #badmintonhorsetrials #beauffort #beauforthunt #badminton @virtualeventing #virtualeventing #danielcranepaintings #trotup #vetsinspection #finalday #winner #britisheventing #worldclass #wellmeetagain #stayathome #heresto2021 #missingyou #horse #hound #hunting #icanhearthehounds

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How’s everyone doing on week 289 of The Happening? Anyone written King Lear yet? All I’ve managed to do is muck out a lot of stables and stare at this painting by Daniel Crane for so long that I’ve convinced myself that I could also do a very complicated and rather beautiful painting of Badminton. Haven’t actually picked up a brush though, so basically the concept is just Schrödinger’s Painting — it could be good or it could be terrible, but because I’ll probably never try to do it, we’ll never know.

National Holiday: National No Dirty Dishes Day. We’re really scraping the barrel — or, um, pan — here.

Your Monday reading list:

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and the Chronicle is publishing some brilliant original content on the subject. In this blog by Samantha Silver, the writer delves into her experiences as a bipolar equestrian and how she’s learned to be gentle with herself when she needs it. It makes for enlightening reading. [Moving Beyond “Why Me?”: Life After A Bipolar Diagnosis]

Apparently the Queen of England is making the most of lockdown — she’s been riding every day. Admittedly this, um, insightful article from Cosmo doesn’t tell us much else, but that’s fine. It’s Monday morning. Sometimes you need something light. [The Queen, 94, Has Been Spending Quarantine Riding Horses Every Damn Day]

Speaking of royals, Vanity Fair celebrated Princess Anne’s 70th by putting her on the cover. It’s not often we get eventing legends on the cover of major mainstream magazines, and okay, they’ve definitely put her on there because she’s a princess, but there’s some mention of her riding career in the accompanying piece and one heck of a cover shot that’ll make you forget the infamous bouffant. [Princess Anne Opens Up About Her Lifetime as a Royal]

If cross-country schooling is on your to-do list this week, check out this great advice from Boyd Martin about nailing sunken roads. My approach is usually ‘kick on, Hail Mary King, and hope for the best’, but apparently it’s possible to add a bit of finesse. [The Downs and Ups of Sunken Roads]

In some countries, horse racing has started again — but what’s life like behind the closed doors of these racetracks? BBC Sport shares all the details, giving us plenty of food for thought as we look ahead to the eventual resumption of our own sport. [Horse racing behind closed doors: How it works in Hong Kong and elsewhere]

Bonus! Monday listening:

The first episode of EN’s brand new podcast, Insanity in the Middle, has hit the airwaves, and we’ve got the legendary Lucinda Green along for the ride. Click here to tune in.

Monday Video from Fleeceworks: Social Distancing as Explained by Two Plastic Horses

What did I just watch? No idea. Am I now watching all the rest of them? Yeah, sure am.