Hill Livery represented at Bicton Arena three-day event
Hill Livery, the full livery yard just outside of Bristol, was out in force and cheering on one of our livery owners and her horse as they competed at Bicton’s three-day event last week.
Charlotte has been a livery owner on the yard for around three years and along with her horse Ellie (show name Kensington Empire), has been training for and competing at BE90 events this season. They’ve had some great placings at event venues like Dauntsey Park (placed 1st), Pontispool (placed 2nd), West Wilts (placed 3rd), Bicton (placed 3rd), Howick (placed 6th) and are ranked joint 5th in the UK for most XC runs clear within the optimum time at BE 80/90. They also have an average score this season of 74% at British Dressage Team Quest prelim. Bicton was their first three-day event.
Our yard owner Terri has been coaching and supporting Charlotte over her training and competition programme, and she was on hand at Bicton too.
Day one – dressage! Despite the 40mph wind, horizontal rain and Charlotte forgetting a bit of the test, they had a respectable score of 32.4. The championship dressage test was performed in a long arena which was new to Charlotte, so she really had to concentrate on the different layout with additional letters. Ellie went round in a beautiful outline and wasn’t fazed by the challenging weather – what a horse!
Day two – cross country! It’s a tad more technical on a three-day event, and Bicton involves roads and tracks, the steeplechase, more roads and tracks and then after a quick vet check, the cross-country course that asks some tough questions of both horse and rider. Fitness is a key part of the journey and Charlotte and Ellie have been training for some time to make sure they could go the distance.
After nailing the steeplechase, and before the second part of roads and tracks started, Terri noticed that Ellie had lost a front shoe, so a quick check in with the on-site farrier was needed. Luckily Terri had come prepared with a spare set of shoes and studs, so Charlotte didn’t have too much time to make up. More rain greeted Charlotte and Ellie on the cross-country course but they flew round, making a lot of it look easy. Unfortunately, Charlotte admits that a lack of concentration at the last but one fence meant they had an avoidable run out which took them out of contention for a placing, but with lots of support from the Hill Livery gang, who had travelled down to support the team, they were cheered over the finish line.
Day three – trot up then show jumping! For the trot up, Charlotte had borrowed some clothes from another yard owner to ensure she was as well turned out as Ellie! The arena had taken a serious amount of rainfall over the last few days, so it worked in Charlotte’s favour to ride a steady round – Terri described it as “the best show jumping round I’ve seen them do – brilliant”.
Charlotte was beaming throughout the whole event and said “So many brilliant forever memories. My biggest highlight was seeing everyone form the yard arrive on Saturday morning to help and support – I couldn't believe it! These acts of kindness from phenomenal yard friends felt far more valuable than any rosette! Tez’s incredible organisation was epic with every eventuality planned and prepared for, along with Drew being so supportive, helpful, useful, funny, and hospitable.
“I also really adored seeing Ellie beautifully turned out and so brilliantly cared for each day. And of course, every time I sit on Ellie’s back, regardless of hideous weather or exploding horses around us, I know I trust her 100% to look after me and do her best – love her so much! I could go on and on”.
We’ve featured some more of Charlotte’s pictures from the event on our Instagram and Facebook pages; give us a like, share and follow to keep up with all the adventures from Hill Livery.