This Sunday, riders from AGDRC head to Alconbury for the Area 7 Summer Dressage Qualifiers. This is the first time in many years that Aspley Guise have had such a strong team to put forward for the Summer Championships.
When I was offered the opportunity to organise a team for this event I jumped at the chance. I joined Aspley Guise because it was one of the friendliest clubs and I wanted the chance to make other people feel as welcome and included as I was by everyone.
My mantra… “Everyone is welcome, it’s all about having fun and supporting each other”.
I was overwhelmed with the response I received, so many of you were willing to come and support the club. I am sad that unfortunately, due to some horse and/ or rider injuries, we have lost some of our intrepid competitors along the way. (Wishing every one affected a speedy recovery.) Despite this, I very proudly entered not ONE but FOUR teams, as well as ONE Junior rider, ONE Individual Senior, AND a pairs team!!!
Wow!! Is all I can say, that and Thank You to everyone who has volunteered!! As team manager I am very excited to be working with such a great band of riders and their stunning horses.
Which brings me to the crux of my post, to introduce to you the Summer Dressage Team and their horses:
Olivia Davis and Sahara Breeze
Olivia’s pony Breeze became a new addition to their family at the beginning of Spring 2013, purchased from a Riding School. In Olivia’s words:
“I was only a little 10 year old who’s legs couldn’t reach past the saddle flaps! Breeze has taught me how to ride and has challenged me as we both got older. Breeze has brought the confidence out in me and has made me that person I am today, and I will always be extremely gratefully to have such a willing, honest first pony. Breeze has taken me to competitions and has shown the competitive, determined attitude in both himself and I. The past two years Breeze has really come out of his shell and has proved himself that he is a fabulous dressage pony who can strut his stuff! With me just finishing my G.C.S.E’s Breeze and I have a fabulous, well-deserved 3 months to go out, have fun and take on more challenges!
Poppy Read and Dudley High StonebridgeP
Poppy rides her relatively new horse, Dudley, a liver chestnut gelding.
“Dudley is a 10 year old gelding, Irish bred from Kent originally. We’ve had him for 10 days, poor guy! We’re excited about getting involved in the team, starting at Intro and taking part in the Pairs test and see how we go”.
Tracey Toombs and Pollyanna Steel
Tracey has had her grey 13 year old ex-racehorse, Pollyanna Steel aka Pocket for 3 years. In Tracey’s words:
“Pocket raced PTP & NH, retiring from racing at the age of 9. She is now trying her hoof at dressage. 99% of the time she is a pleasure, 1% of the time not so much!! We are thrilled to be part of the AGDRC dressage team and hope that on the day we will be on our best behaviour but whatever happens I will have cake and Pimms in my lorry!”
Marianne Rabanal and Neon
Marianne has owned Neon, a grey 15.2 PRE (Andalusian) Gelding for 12 ½ years,
“Neon is a Veteran as he is 22 in 2019. Although he has competed up to Medium level dressage he is a lovely all rounder and we’ve also done show jumping, working equitation, showing, fancy dress, gymkhana games and loads of hacking. Neon has a lot of character and is quick to express his opinions, especially about the English weather! He does also get quite tense and pick up on any rider tension so staying calm in tests is an ongoing work in progress”.
Rebecca Pratt and Edelmann
Rebecca has owned her horse Edelmann, stable name Diesel, for 5 years.
“Edelmann stable name Diesel is a 10 year old Dutch Warmblood out of Fruhling. I have had Diesel from a very green 5 year old. We have done a little bit of everything and have decided to concentrate on dressage this summer and see how we get on”.
Kim Thomas and Skittles
Kim is bringing her 16hh Welsh Section D cross, Skittles:
“I have owned Skittles since she was 2 years old, and brought her from a local sale. We have done Dressage (of course), endurance, le trec and showing. Skittles also has a great jump on her and has competed show jumping and cross country with one of my friends riding her. Skittles does have a crazy side, but then she’s a mare… with a wall eye… you can’t tell her, you have to ask her”.
Anna Rose and Artist Crest
Anna brings her Irish Sport Horse Artist Crest, aka Charlie, to the team.
In Anna’s words:
I have owned Charlie for 5 years, he is a coloured Irish Sports Horse by The Artist Breed. Charlie was bred to show jump however he has shown he has a natural flair for Dressage, which considering his love for it, I’m learning to enjoy it. Charlie has a massive personality and is naughtier than a pony at times, but he is tremendous fun”.
Lauren Hewett and Coole Ben
As well as team manager, I am also supporting the team with my Ex-racehorse, Coole Ben (aka Ben)
Ben is a 16.3hh bay gelding, he “raced” NH although his career was short lived as he didn’t feel the need to ever finish a race. We have owned Ben for 7 years and whilst not always an easy journey, he is my horse of a lifetime. Ben will turn his hoof to anything - we mainly do dressage, however we also do a bit of jumping, and showing.
We are very proud to be representing Aspley Guise, and to be surrounded by such a lovely group of people.
I hope you will join me in wishing all of our
Riders Good Luck, but most of all good Fun!!