I can’t resist talking about my horses first in this blog. They are such a large part of my life so you must hear all about them.
First is Bo, my Warmblood x thoroughbred 8 year old. I’ve had Bo for nearly 5 years so much of his education is down to me. I reckon I’ve done a pretty good job because he’s a very lovely chap who tries his best all the time. He’s a 16hh gelding who loves to jump, though we do a little dressage too to instil some discipline into his life. Bo enjoys nothing better than a gallop round a cross-country course or a day out hunting, tackling all the big hedges and ditches with the best of them. He’s not quite so keen on working in the school, but I feel it’s good for him so we do school on a regular basis.
I’m planning to do some eventing with this gentle horse in the not-too-distant future, so we’re currently working on his showjumping skills.
He’s not a natural showjumper because he’s too gung-ho! He loves to gallop and leap rather than take on the mantle of a collected and precise athlete in the ring. But he’s not bad and it’s just something we have to work on so he gets more careful in his jumping.
I’m lucky enough to have a nice set of showjumps at home in the arena, so we can practise with our instructor until he improves. Then I will be off on the eventing circuit and looking for some real fun.
My other horse is a youngster called Spider. Spider is more TB, about three-quarters, and we’re not sure what the other quarter is – probably something Irish as he has something of the stamp of an Irish Draught. Remember the true Irish breed? They were lovely horses with a great nature and when bred to a thoroughbred they produced a calm yet fast horse that was capable of a lot. I had a beautiful chestnut mare years ago who was IDxTB and she was fabulous, but that breeding seems to have disappeared in favour of a lighter horse, without the wonderful nature of the ID.
However, back to Spider. I’ve only had him 6 months and he’s something of a project. He’s 3 years old and almost ready to be backed. But he’s been spoiled by his previous owner, who was a hobby breeder. There’s nothing more challenging than teaching a horse respect when he’s been raised to think he’s in charge of everything! However, he’s learning and proving to be a willing pupil. Spider is still growing but I expect him to reach about 16.3hh so he’s a big boy.
I’ll relay some of our adventures another day and tell you about our ponies too. But for now I’m off to exercise my boys. See ya