Posted on Tuesday, March 20th, 2012 at 7:51 am.
So, having done Australia, Christmas AND skiing, meant that the season was now coming at us like an express train so off to West Wilts it was for some very cold, very long days doing BSJA and then lots of trips to Rosamund Green and Boomerang XC schooling courses with various lorry loads each time. Luckily, they were all fantastic, seeming to have picked up where they left off. Boomerang was a particularly good day as I taught a lesson that a lovely lady, Penny Hayward, had won in a competition organised by my long time sponsor, Tri-Zone boots, which, judging by the smile on her face went very well.
And then I also had Happy Times on the lorry, who schooled like a real professional – just so smooth and bold – very exciting. I’ve also ust got back from a week’s Australian team training at the Unicorn Centre. I took 4 horses, Happy, Paulank Brockagh, Mumbo Jumbo and Real Dancer so it was pretty intense – one morning I had had 4 jumping lessons and 4 dressage lessons all by 2pm – exhausting!! But great training sessions though, particularly with Brett Parberry and Gareth Hughes who are both the most brilliant dressage trainers.
Which brings us right up to date with Moreton last weekend where we had all the young ones out doing their first run of the season. It’s great to be underway, but as we were driving there, we couldn’t believe the weather – torrential rain and very cold! Luckily, just as we were pulling in, the clouds blew away and it was beautiful blue skies all day – thank goodness! So the weather, teemed with lovely courses and excellent going made for a lovely start to the season. All the horses went very well indeed, with 4 out of 5 double clears and Lucy picking up 3rd place with the very exciting Angelo. It was great to have all our owners there to support us which made it a really fun day.
This week, we’ve got quite a few going to Tweseldown and then Happy Times has his first run of the season and begins his Badminton build up at Aldon the weekend after. It’s non stop from here on in….!! <<Read previous post here
More pics on our Griffiths Eventing Team Facebook page…
Posted on Friday, March 16th, 2012 at 10:02 am.
Team FLAIR’s Melissa Miller takes a whack at the Red Hills Horse Trials…
A few days have passed since the Red Hills International Horse Trials which has given me time to reflect on how things went. Luckily for me, never having been to Red Hills before, I was able to get a great view of “The Red Hills Experience”. We were blessed this year with wonderful weather all weekend long which lead to many spectators coming and showing their support during the competition!
It’s always funny to look back on an event at how many things you may or may not change about the weekend; the best part about our sport is we don’t have to do well in one phase….. We have to do well in three phases. Dressage had it scores all over the map, with a few people in the CIC* being near the 80% mark and with people being in the low-mid 20’s in other divisions. So needless to say I was happy with the Intermediate horse keeping his brain inside of his head (which wasn’t easy with so many people there to watch) and bringing home a score in the mid 30’s.
Cross Country day was much of a waiting game as the Intermediate group didn’t start until nearly 4pm. So after plenty of time to walk the course, and watch, I was finally getting to go…. Just as I was about ready to head out of the start box we had a hold (just for a jump repair, no one was hurt thankfully) so another short wait and we were finally off. The intermediate course jumped beautifully, was decorated to no end, and my horse was eating up every jump and combination like it was nothing. That is, until I had a minor brain melt down near the end of the course….. so a circle around and off he galloped again finishing the course in great rhythm and absolutely FULL of running thanks to the wonderful FLAIR strips that kept him feeling fresh and alive the entire way around the course.
Sunday came and finally after another extremely long waiting game we were able to Show Jump, with them finishing our division around 5pm. Show jumping is held on grass on a fairly angled area that was causing several issues in all divisions. The course itself rode well with my horse and I just having minor disagreements on how we were supposed to jump (think my horse still had slight cross country fever in his head). But none the less it gave us excellent ideas to bring back home to the drawing board. And look forward to the Ocala CCI** in a few short weeks.
Overall the ‘Red Hills Experience’ was a good one and we will be looking forward to heading back there next year. As I hope FLAIR will be there as well since it’s great to see such an excellent product that supports the horses while sponsoring and supporting what we all love to do, Eventing!
Posted on Thursday, March 15th, 2012 at 10:00 am.
Christmas is always quite a big event with us as we head down to Lucy’s family home on the Isle of Wight for some serious festivities! This year was no exception…with 17 of us for lunch – ranging in age from 23 to 93, and Lucy’s uncle being a wine merchant, you can imagine how long that lunch was! Great fun…
But, after Christmas, it really was time to knuckle down and begin preparing for the 2012 season. With horses coming back from their winter holidays and pipes freezing we had a lot to be getting on with. It’s always a tricky time of year as the horses are fresh but working them can be a bit ‘stop, start’ with the weather conditions.
However, a brief respite from all this was on the cards after we received an amazing invitation to join the Posfords (our long time owners) at their chalet in Meribel for a few days skiing…how could we say no!?! It was, of course, as incredible as we had hoped – the weather was beautiful, the snow excellent and of course the food and wine just superb – the whole trip was very spoiling indeed.
Lucy had only been skiing once before (when she was 12 – I’m not mentioning how many years ago that was…) so apart from a bit of a shaky start on the first day, she then ‘got the bug’ big time and much to my irritation, soon caught up with me! Despite my competitive nature getting the better off me, it really was the most fantastic few days and you can see more evidence of the fun times in our Facebook page! Read next post here>>
Posted on Sunday, March 11th, 2012 at 9:39 am.
Team FLAIR Eventer and member of the USPC Board of Governors Eric Dierks takes the viewer on a course walk of the 2010 AEC XC course. In this fifth video in the FLAIR Master Class series featuring Eric Dierks, he discusses AEC 2010 Fences 15 A&B — The Bending Line.
View all of Eric Dierk’s FLAIR Master Class videos here>>
Posted on Saturday, March 10th, 2012 at 9:29 am.
I can’t believe how quickly the winter has gone and, as I write this, I’ve already done the first event of the 2012 season…! I think most of the reason time has passed so quickly is because Lucy and I have jammed in so much to the last three months…
As soon as the season was over last Autumn, we headed off for Australia for a ‘Busman’s Holiday’ – we were there for 4 weeks, but three out of the four were spent working with my title sponsor, Horsequest, who are growing fast in Australia. We spent a few days at Equitana -the big equestrian trade show in Sydney – working on the HQ stand and then we headed across to Adelaide to help promote the brand at the Adelaide CCI****. This is a great event, with a wonderful atmosphere, again I was busy doing signings on the stand and we certainly managed to lure in my Aussie mates with some cold beers to offer round! I then also did course walks and a lecture demo – this was quite amusing as it turned out the horse that I had been lent to ride was called Lucy – you can imagine where I could have taken the inuendos with that! I thought better of it though and restrained myself!
From Adelaide, I then headed back to Sydney where I was teaching a 4 day clinic at the beautiful Wallaby Hills. Unfortunately, it poured with rain the entire time we were there so we didn’t see it at our best but it is still the most stunning location and Alex and Derek were the most incredible hosts. Our week at WH finished with a rather out of control evening as Chris Burton had joined us there and it coincided with his 30th birthday…I think it would probably sum up the evening’s proceedings if I mentioned that a certain undergarment of Chris’s ended up hanging from the chandelier….say no more!
After all this we needed some quiet time so Lucy and I headed down to my parent’s house in Melbourne for a few days of R&R -not to mention detox…Then it was time to head back to the British winter. Read more>>
Posted on Thursday, March 8th, 2012 at 10:56 am.
FLAIR announces Diamonds and Dirt sponsorship featuring a Bounty Bonus
FLAIR, LLC announces their sponsorship of the Diamonds and Dirt Barrel Horse Classic to be held March 14 – 18. The premier event will be hosted at the Brazos County Expo Center in Bryan, Texas.
Founder, Kristi Schiller of Schiller Ranch, is dedicated to developing the Diamonds and Dirt Barrel Horse Classic into an annual event.
Schiller said Diamonds and Dirt is bringing the bling back to Texas with their first class hospitality and premium payout.
This year marks the first Diamonds and Dirt Barrel Horse Classic offering one of the richest purses in the country. In addition to the $10,000 5D open race with a $60,000 prize package, the event will host a $50,000 added futurity plus another $60,000 prize package.
As an event sponsor, FLAIR will initiate their first of many Bounty Bonus programs to be held at various races across the country. A Bounty Bonus will be awarded to the fastest time wearing a FLAIR strip at each race at Diamonds and Dirt. The winners of the prize will receive a cash bonus, FLAIR strips and a FLAIR cap.
FLAIR is pleased to announce their involvement with the first Diamonds and Dirt Barrel Horse Classic and the initiation of the Bounty Bonus.
Media Contact: The Western Integrity Agency