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April 2013

Cassie’s Diary – April 2013

I am writing this on my first day off for a while, although as today consists of poo picking the fields, scrubbing Poppy’s Cherry Showshine slobber off her stable door , riding the three and plenty of revision, it’s not really a day off! Although to me that’s the best way to spend a day off, minus the revision!

A big, grey Christmas present …..


Last time I promised to tell you a bit more about our new addition – Patch. We weren’t looking for another horse after we unfortunately lost Henry and David last year as I had decided that two were more than enough. However, with Rupert going out competing most weekends I started to feel very sorry for Poppy being left behind on her own. A friend of mine, Jess Butler, who I met whilst on placement at Oliver Townend’s, told me about a nice grey gelding that was semi-retired from eventing for various reasons and needing a new home and this was Patch.

To cut a long story short, on Christmas Eve we made a five hundred mile round trip to collect what turned out to be my Christmas present to Simon and his Christmas present to me – Patch Curtis. For those of you reading who are into your eventing, the name ‘Curtis’ might ring a bell. Patch also happens to be brother to the legend that is Oliver Townend’s ride, Flint Curtis!

Since then, Patch has had a full vetting and started fittening work. Patch’s main problem is that, like many thoroughbreds, including Poppy, he has kissing spines. This explains a lot about his previous performance and results, and with both mine and Simon’s experience of kissing spines, we hope we can get the best out of him. So let’s just see how he goes and hopefully I will have lots to keep you updated with about him too!

Rupert just keeps getting better!


Rupert went to his first BE event this month at Solihull Horse Trials. Rupert is a fairly quirky horse and still a little green with new things. I chose Solihull for him as it’s a lovely event and the show-jumping is on a surface. Rupert was a little shell-shocked on arrival, so I let him graze and settle down whilst being able to take everything in. Our dressage was not up to Rupert’s usual standards and he was very tense. I think in fairness, this was expected – he had never been to an event like this before. The judge commented that ‘he was a lovely horse but just not listening to you today’! This was true – Rupert was too busy listening to the xc commentary!

I was a little disappointed with him in the show-jumping as we had three stops, which is not like him at all! I think we will put this down to tension and generally still being a bit shell-shocked. I left feeling pleased with him though and knowing that next time all that will be out of his system. Let’s just call that a warm up!  Our next stop is Berriewood Horse Trials at the end of May. Up until then I will continue my mission of bomb-proofing Rupert!

So after all that, the following weekend I took him show-jumping and we came home with an effortless two second places and another qualifier! We then went out the week after and added to our rosette collection with a second and a third. I think he wants to be a show-jumper!

Rupert in Action!

Happy Birthday Poppy!

This month Poppy celebrated her 17th Birthday, making her officially a ‘veteran’. I had organised a little birthday party for her but the weather put a stop to those plans. Poppy still had a few visitors and a horse-friendly birthday cake, which she shared with Rupert and Patch. She is going great at the moment and feeling really good. As everyone keeps telling me how well she looks, I really should look into doing a bit of ROR showing with her over the summer, she loves getting plaited up and looking glam!

Other news…..

Simon and I recently got engaged which is very exciting! We had a lovely break to Venice, it was all very romantic!

I’m also now a reporter for Eventing Worldwide and will be reporting from many local events which is a lot of fun! How I find the time for all this I am really not sure. I think once you have worked in a vet’s, your normal working day becomes at least 12 hours!

Badminton and Bandanas…..


We had a lovely day at Badminton too. I popped in to say hello to the girls on the HorseHage stand. It was great seeing so many dogs wandering around in their HorseHage bandanas – they looked so cool! Their stand always looks so welcoming and the feed samples always smell so tasty! I think if Rupert ever gets to go to the Grassroots he will sniff it out from miles away!

That’s it for this month, a longer diary than normal but lots of stuff going on I didn’t want to miss anything out!

Right, back to my list of jobs!

Take Care

Cassie, Poppy, Rupert and Patch