Victoria Bax – It is nice to be back

“I was very much looking forward to getting going again this year with Alberta’s Pride when details emerged about Tweseldown running their event on Good Friday just 4 days after restriction allowed at the beginning of April.

I arranged to go XC schooling on our first day of freedom, then show jumping on the Wednesday, followed by Eventing on the Friday, so Alberta’s Pride had a full on week.

Everything ran smoothly, resulting in a beautiful dressage test for a score of 28 penalties followed by a super show jumping round however we very sadly managed to tip one rail, but somehow managed to leave the rail up that everyone else was having down!

Then onto a nice clear XC coming home just a couple of seconds over the time.

A solid performance at BE 100 Open level to start our year.”

“The plan was then the following week to run back up to Novice level at South of England however horses being horses, Alberta’s Pride had other ideas!

Two days after Tweseldown I noticed a slight swelling on the inside of a front leg.  This didn’t cause any lameness however I decided that Eventing him again five days later probably wouldn’t do him any good.  Instead Alberta’s Pride enjoyed a quiet couple of weeks of work.

He appeared very well in himself a couple of weeks later and the swelling had reduced, so we started to up the work again with the hope of enjoying another run at Chilham Castle at the beginning of May.

In preparation for this I decided to take him showjumping the Wednesday before.”

“I was pretty disappointed with how he jumped that day, it certainly didn’t feel like him but I couldn’t quite put my finger on what the issue was.  I continued to work him for the next couple of days and then Chilham was upon us.

We had nice times which meant we didn’t have to leave too early and instead enjoyed a leisurely Sunday morning getting the yard done before leaving.

Upon our arrival I went off to walk the course and check out the ground as I was concerned how the lack of rain would have affected it.  However, I didn’t need to worry as the organisers had worked their magic and done an amazing job of making the ground as good as could be expected.  I was excited to have a good run back at Novice level round not a big, but a fairly technical XC.

So onto the dressage, where Alberta’s Pride felt extremely “hot” 

I couldn’t really get my leg on him and he was throwing in flying changes and going disunited every second stride.  Originally I thought the geese on the lake that were being rather noisy was causing this unsettledness however I now know this not to be the case.

The test itself was horrendous!  This boy is very consistent with his dressage these days and generally scores in the 20’s/70% so to be stopping going backwards and leaping about I know something was wrong.”

“I walked back to the lorry feeling pretty deflated and sure enough as I untacked I realised his back was not in a good way.  This is where the day ended, I withdrew and then made the long journey home, but not before messaging my physio and explaining I needed her magic hands ASAP!

Lucky for me she was able to come the following day where she took one look at him and diagnosed a pulled Gluteal muscle.

I have very high suspicions that he may well he done this by getting cast in his stable the previous night.  This is not unusual for him to get cast, he has been caught a number of times enjoying a roll only to get himself stuck.

Still at least I knew what the problem was and I managed to sort it ASAP.  Alberta’s Pride has enjoyed another quiet week to recover and then hopefully we can get back up and running for a third time if I’m lucky and actually make it around an event!  Here’s hoping anyway!”

“Alberta’s Rose has been progressing well with her jumping and confidence building in relation to dental issues that were originally identified in June 2019 and have been troublesome ever since.

She has been out showjumping a couple of times jumping clear rounds in the British Novice and Discovery classes so we returned to the cross country course too.

We took a trip down to Lodge Farm in Kent to use their superb facilities.  We had a fabulous session picking right back up where we left off at the end of last season where she ran round a couple of low level hunter trials.  

I left feeling much more confident that she will make a return to Eventing at some stage this season.”

“In the meantime we returned to British Dressage in some Medium classes again which she did rather well in scoring 69% and 70%, even qualifying for Summer Medium Regional Finals again in just two outings!

She was also entered for a low level One Day Event, however in true horse style, 3 days before the event I got her in to have a last jumping session and low and behold she was now lame.  I have been unable to find anything obvious so have been cold hosing and using my Arc Equine unit in the hope it will settle things down before long otherwise she may end up returning to the vets again to try and identify the cause.

Horses hey, remind me why we have them?!?

Until next time…”


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