Little Downham (1)

Posted on 7th June 2021 by Joe Lethbridge

This weekend, the team headed to Little Downham in Cambridgeshire to give the older horses Novice and Intermediate runs.

Friday saw Kate and Amelia contest the Intermediate with Call Me Dassett (Casper) and Dassett Rock Star (Rocky), who both went very well despite the rainy conditions. We were pleased with Casper’s 31.8 dressage – especially considering he threw a shoe a few movements in! He followed this up with good jumping rounds, coming home from the cross country clear and with a few time. Given his previous experience it felt unnecessary to run him fast across country, but it was lovely to see how on-line he was round a tough track after doing so little competing the last couple of seasons. The event seemed like water off a duck’s back to him and his clayed legs the following morning were the only giveaway he’d been competing. It’ll be great to see him at another big event soon!

Not wanting to show anyone up, Rocky and Amelia scored an identical 31.8 dressage in the other section, and we were delighted with his effortless clear cross country. An uncharacteristic couple of rails in the muddy arena unfortunately dropped them out of the placings but we were blown away with his class cross country round, so all was forgiven! We are only just scratching the surface of this horse’s potential, and he is a really exciting prospect for the future.

Kate returned the next day with four more horses in the Novice. We all had a very early start to get the horses ready – you never truly get used to a 2.30AM alarm! Kate is hugely grateful for Craig driving ‘Big Blue’ (the bigger DE lorry) as Kate had 2 little people in tow so made the trip in her car. And it was beyond exciting to have Lauren back at the helm as she came along to organise all things Dassett for the day…including a very excited Ella, who loved spending the day with her god mother!

Dassett Code (Smartie) gave Kate a great ride and jumped some super rounds, with just one rail and a few time added to their dressage score. Owned by Alice Rocher, Smartie and Kate are forming a solid partnership and look to have an exciting season ahead of them.

Dassett Select (JJ) also had a good first Novice run of the season; he did some lovely work in the dressage arena and then jumped some good rounds, unfortunately making a couple of green mistakes out on the cross country. The testing courses were very educational for him and he will have gained lots of experience for his future competitions.

Andrea Burdett’s Dassett Forever Autumn (Autumn) was outstanding to produce a 30 double clear in her first Novice run of the year, and looked ever more established and confident at this level. Unfortunately Andrea wasn’t able to come to the event, but we are keeping our fingers crossed she gets to see her compete in her first 2* at Blair castle later on in the year.

Dassett Showgirl (Lola), owned by Lesley Rocher and Sheena Hawkin, also contested her first Novice of the season and jumped brilliantly. This classy mare has so much talent and it’s great to see her demonstrate this out at a competition. Everything looks so straightforward for her that it’s easy to forget how little she has done so far; she is an incredible horse and Lesley and Sheena are bound to have an exciting journey ahead with her!

Overall we’ve had a successful event, especially baring in mind most of these horses haven’t had a run since mid September due to Kate’s pregnancy.  It’s fantastic to see Kate back in action and competing so many horses, especially so soon after having baby Finn. We can’t wait for the next one!

Joe Lethbridge

Posted by Joe Lethbridge

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