Mary King kicks off 2014 with lots of roadwork


Having just returned from a lovely skiing week with her family, Mary King is raring to go for the 2014 season, as she tells us in her blog…

“Following on from my last blog, the three year olds have been turned away again and my four year old, Dan, kept working until just before Christmas. I continued his education, gradually increasing the size of the fences, adding in combinations, grids and spookier fillers and then because the weather turned quite wet I used it to my advantage and got him used to puddles. There are lots of tracks, which fill with water, and he took to them well, he is naturally brave and bold which is a good sign! Through December as the weather deteriorated I upped the horses hard feed and started giving them haylage and they are all now snug in their Bucas rugs.”

“Now that it is January all the horses are coming back into work, on Friday 3rd January the farrier, Nick Rule, cane to do two days worth of work – with ten horses to shoe it kept him busy. I am lucky to have Lauren Reed and Emma Hartwell come back again this year to work with us again, and Emily is back with us having had a fantastic time working with Ben Maher and ferdi Eilberg. She was due to go and spend some time with Lauren Hoff in Florida, however unfortunately circumstances changed. We have plenty to do here though!” 

“The work begins with lots of roadwork. We hack everyday starting with shorter flatter rides and gradually introducing hills. You need to just use your common sense really and not do too much too quickly. Some of the horses will be eventing at the beginning of March, some at the middle so we need to be fit and ready for then. The younger horses start a bit of schooling after a few weeks and begin jumping towards the end of January as they need to learn and be educated more, whereas the older horses won’t start jumping until early February.”

“We have the dentist, Keith Evans, coming out in mid January to go through all the horse’s mouths, take off any edges and report on any changes from the previous year. It is important to know that they are all comfortable in their mouths for when the harder work begins.”

“January is a month of admin work, we have to get all the horses registered with British Eventing and work with sponsors to plan for the next year. I am also working on an exciting new project, a new book that will be launched in the autumn! I can’t say much now but watch this space…”