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There have been some changes for me and my horses, the biggest of which was moving back to Lincolnshire after having moved to West Sussex. In my last post I mentioned we had moved to a new yard, and after working there for six months I decided the situation wasn’t going to work for us and made the move back to Lincolnshire in May. I also mentioned that due to unforeseen circumstances we didn’t have the best end to the season and were working on improving that, but things are turning around for us now…

Geesteren and Zuidwolde…

After spending a few weeks getting settled back in at home, we headed to the Netherlands for three weeks, competing in Geesteren and Zuidwolde. We took Wonder Why and Chaccomo Agostini, who are both now back on top form. The first day at Geesteren started with a bang… a bang to the head that is! During the trot-up Chacco got a little too excited and reared up, hitting my head with his on the way down. It looked worse than it was and the show doctor stitched me up fine. It seems that having a bandage under my hat all week made no difference to my riding as we had a great show with multiple placings and Wonder Why and I won the Grand Prix.

5th in the Grand Prix at Zuidwolde

From Geesteren we went on to Zuidwolde which was another great show. The first week I was placed 4th in the ranking class with Wonder Why, but we unfortunately had four faults in that weekend’s Grand Prix, with the last part of the triple combination catching us out. The second week we were 9th in the Friday’s ranking class, just jumping a bit too slow and having a time fault. The Grand Prix also went well with us jumping clear in the first round but having an unlucky fence in the jump off, we finished 5th in the end.

Weston Lawns…

Once back in the UK we spent some time with our younger horses, taking them out to a couple of shows at Weston Lawns. My four-year-old, Hero vd Akkerhoeve, went especially well, coming equal first in the four-year-old final with a double clear.

Roosendaal and Verbier…

In August we packed up the lorry again and caught the ferry from Harwich to the Hook of Holland, heading for Roosendaal. Having never been before, I wasn’t sure what to expect but I had heard good things. The facilities were all quality and the new arena they had just put in was excellent. It was another great show for us with a 6th in the Friday’s ranking class, as well as a 3rd in the Grand Prix. I was really pleased with how Wonder Why went in the Grand Prix as there were only three clears through to the jump off due to the time being really tight.

Wonder Why at Verbier

The spectacular setting at Verbier

From there we headed on to Verbier in Switzerland. What an amazing place to host a show, the setting was astonishing. The drive was a little scary – we had to drive up the mountain to the ski resort and at one point I thought we were going to roll back down! Wonder Why jumped amazingly in the ranking class coming 4th. I was worried because he can sometimes get worked up in smaller collecting rings with all the other horses and it’s difficult to keep him relaxed. Unfortunately that was the case on Sunday when the Grand Prix came round, but we only had four faults so I was still pleased as tight arenas aren’t his strong suit.

Next time…

I’m now back in the UK again having a bit of down time and working with the youngsters again. We haven’t got another international show now until October when we head to Oliva Nova for their Autumn Tour. I’ve also got a training session with the European Young Riders Academy in Stockholm and a friend’s wedding in Italy to attend. Don’t forget to check out my social media pages to see what I’m up to.

Until next time,

Spencer