As well as prepping for the trip down to Badminton next week I also have THREE university assignments to hand in that week. This has been my constant struggle, getting the balance right between training me and Pogs for the Mitsubishi Motors Cup, but also putting the right amount of time into my studies. Hopefully I will do OK in both!
We have had an amazing start to our season so far; three events, three double clears, and three top ten finishes! Our best finish has been last Sunday (April 23rd) at BE Solihull where we came second! I’ve tried to get Pogo out to as many different events as possible, he’s never done Solihull’s BE100 before so I thought it would be a good test before the Mitsubishi Motors Cup. He has felt fantastic every time out, so much so that he almost jumped me out the saddle at BE Eland Lodge he was jumping so well! My main aim through each event has been to get a better cross country rhythm, in our first event at Norton Disney he was far too eager and practically ripped my arms out the whole way round. After a top tip from Caroline, the following week at Eland we nailed it, I needed to sit a little taller and keep my rains bridged to stop him getting away from me early on. It worked a treat and the whole course felt much smoother with Pogo jumping from his rhythm rather than rushing his way round.
This week is our last push for training, we’ve been able to hire a 20m x 60m arena to practice our test in, all our comments this season have been for more suppleness and engagement so I will be trying to work on that as I practice my test, fingers crossed I can remember it! As well as that I have my final jumping lesson with Caroline Moore on Thursday, this will be as much for me as Pogs, she never lets me get away with anything which I love and need. Then my last dressage lesson with Nick Creaton on Friday, where we will be working on getting him to work over his back more in order to get that perfect swing in his work, while staying in self carriage and staying forwards. All I can do then is to try and not ride like a potato on Tuesday and Wednesday next week! One thing I tend to do (Caroline’s always on at me about it) is I tend to not think enough when I get into the ring, I just go for survival. Her top tip, ride like you want to win. I just have to remember to engage my brain.
As this is our first time to the Mitsubishi Motors Cup at Badminton we have no idea what to expect when we get there. Luckily me, mum and Pogo are all used to staying away at shows so have a generic packing list but there is always that nervousness when it’s a venue or show you’ve not been to before. We have taken the decision to treat it as a bit of a jolly and stay the whole week to watch the CCI4*. Treat ourselves!
Obviously it would be amazing to do well in the Mitsubishi Motors Cup, but to be honest I’m so thrilled with how Pogs has done to qualify, and in the build-up the finals he has been practically perfect. My main aim is always the progression of my horse, results are always just a bonus, and if he is improving and trying his hardest I am happy. I’ve just got to make sure I don’t let him down now. I can’t wait for this week to be over so we can get there and get stuck in, let’s hope the sun shines!
If you want to follow my progress during the week follow me on Instagram (@lozzallin) or our Facebook page The Lodge Equestrian Farm.
I’ll be Number 217 Lauren Allin on The Aviator III.
Thanks for following us and we will see you on the other side!