Saturday, 22 May 2010

Red - the wonder horse

It's been a long time since I posted – and quite an eventful time.  Dee suddenly started to lose condition at the end of the winter.  This clashed coincidentally with our vehicle being off the road for five weeks.  I therefore made an arrangement with Briwnant for them to feed Dee every day for me and she quickly was back to looking better.  It is difficult to get Briwnant without transport – expensive by taxi or a long uphill walk from the nearest bus stop, so this delayed our getting back in the saddle.
I lunged Dee when I could and managed two or three rides over that time.  She now looks fantastic – fit, shiny coat and athletic.  The herd have been in the top fields for the last few weeks.  They have to go right to the top for the best grass, but back down to the bottom for water, so she has had her strengthening exercise just by living at grass.  When I eventually was able to take her round the Wenallt horse trail, she seemed as fit as at the end of last summer.
We've had several nice rides over the last couple of weeks, and my elder son, Daniel, came out with me last Wednesday.  This was good because it gave me the opportunity to ride Red for a change.

When we first decided to put Red on working livery at Briwnant I had my concerns.  I do not think Dee's experience of working livery was very good most of the time at Pontcanna, but Red is having a great time.  As well as the lessons and treks he does for the riding school, he also gets schooled regularly and this has included some jumping.  Now some time ago I commented on my blog that I thought Red was a good horse and could potentially be a very good horse with an experienced and more capable rider than me to bring him on.  This is happening for him at Briwnant.  They have a new tutor, Alfie, who is an experienced and excellent rider, and he has been putting Red through his paces.  It turns out that Red is a bold and confident jumper and we are going to start competing him in a few weeks with Alfie riding him.  He is such an extraordinary horse.  'ö-Dzin can ride him perfectly safely and he will be quiet and well behaved.  They put beginners on him for lessons.  Yet he can also be a powerful, forward-going and adventurous horse. 

This afternoon we went back up to Briwnant to watch Red in his jumping practice.  Unfortunately there was a mix up over the time and Red had already been jumped and fed by the time we arrived.  So we watched Alfie jumping Saffron (below) and then Kalif.  He is a brilliant rider.  He told us they put the jumps up to the top notch when they are training Red.  I can't wait to see that and will definitely post some photos when we have them.

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