Well now we have finished the second week in Arezzo and i think things are going along well. With only three horses i am not so busy but we are looking to increase that soon! Michelle is on a mission!!!! I amcurrently riding Bella,

Libertin and one young horse for Lorenzo Toscano called Quick Time.


Charlie was sold recently and i am very sad to see him go, he has given me so much in the last four years! His next owner is very lucky to have found him and i look forward to seeing him out at the shows with her. Speaking of old horses, Prada arrived at Arezzo with a new

rider and it was great to she her jump so well, finishing 8th on the grass arena in the Bronze Tour GP...... Go Prada!


The young horse i am riding for Lorenzo is going along well, I think its his 4th or 5th show but he is proving very easy to ride, not spooky at all with a great attitude on course.


Bella has qualified for the GP by jumping clear in his 145 qualifying class each week.

The first week (my first COC class) showed how much i am going to benefit from having my wonderful coach Michelle here again. One look at my video from this first 150 GP & she told me that i had jumped into the triple combination & under legged out, consequently having the back rail of the seriously square 150 oxer. My second problem was to jump an oxer at

the beginning of a line with typical "Bella" expression (very extravagant & big jump)...we landed a little to the left & a bit loose...i moved up with my shoulders but not enough leg. As it was a forward 4 to the double this meant I did not react quickly enough & was 1/2 stride away from the oxer with him behind my leg !!!!!!! ...... he still left the ground but had the

back rail..... not only that he kept going to jump out in a very unbalanced way out of the vertical. If i ever needed convincing that he was brave he did it that day. He then went on to clear the final fence being an airy 160 gate by about 20 centimeters. He did not want to touch anything else. What a great horse.


So....Michelle finally arrives on Saturday of this weekend. She rings from Rome at 7.30 in the morning & we think she will be here in time for the GP Qualifier....... 6 hours later & after convincing the kind ring steward to keep letting me go further down in the draw, Michelle helps me with our first European warm up together for 12 months..... Of course Bella goes out & jumps a beautiful clear round so we are qualified again for our second COC

the following day.


I am certainly appreciating the wonderful Boccacia arena & also riding the Frank Rothenberger courses which are always challenging...

Yesterdays course was the biggest & most technical Bella & i have ever jumped.The first related line (1-2) was square oxer, with a waiting 8 to a 150 vertical. Then we had a gallop to a square oxer with a short 7 to another 150 vertical. Then a long approach to a grey palisade wall with big vacant arches that you looked through. Then a 6 1/2 stride line to a treble with a triple bar in, 1 stride to vertical then 2 strides to a square oxer out.

I was very pleased with Bella because i had to get the 7 strides to the treble combination early so i could move forward to the triple bar in. He jumped this combination so beautifully making it feel so easy which was fantastic as there were a lot of rails at this part of the course. We then had an uphill turnback , vertical to oxer which could be ridden in a short 7

or big 6..... the 6 looked easy & he jumped the oxer very well.

We then had a left turn downhill to a square oxer followed by a big 7 or an 8 in hand to

the open water.

We chose to ride the 8 in hand but he moved left off my leg costing us 4 faults & representing so time at the water. I was very pleased that his attitude was excellent after being disciplined (this is often tricky with stallions), & he subsequently jumped the water straight & well.

On landing we had a short 8 to a vertical, oxer combination. His concentration was fantastic after the water as this combination was another bogey area of the course with a lot of horses having faults. The final line was an oxer to the final vertical away from the in gate & he continued his fantastic round to jump these well....... so so close .... to a clear round

& a 1/2 COC..... I certainly feel that we are getting closer with every competition.

The fantastic outcome of the day was that even though the track was much tougher than the week before & much more technical with 15 clear from the 60 starters, the very fast jump off saw none other than Australian Phil Lever on Ashleigh Drossel Dan win the GP by

more then a second from Germanys Tobias Meyer.

The Australians in the stands made a lot of noise at presentation. Congratulations Phil!


Its also great to see another fellow Australian Peter Carcary from the north of Queensland in the line up at these international shows. Peter was 2nd yesterday in a 130 class and won a 120 class on the main arena last week! Good job Pete!


Today is the only non competition day of the week with the young

horses starting up again on Tuesday. I will keep you posted next week

with another update!


Take Care



Arezzo Grand Prix

29 March 2010


Ciao everyone,


Now we are in the count down to Arezzo..I jumped my last national show last weekend with Bella and Libertin in preparation for the international shows this month. Everything is going along very smoothly &  I hope it continues this way! Alberto (vet) was out on Monday and all horses vetted well.

The lorry has been cleaned and serviced, Loes, Sanna, Beppe and I will be staying in the lorry at Arezzo and my parents and Michelle in an apartment in Arezzo. My parents arrived last week but unfortunately not accompanied by Michelle who has been hospitalized due to a nasty ear infection. It will be a few more days before she can fly.


Since being here, my parents have seen the facility under snow as well as in beautiful sunshine. The attached photos are the first 3 days of their trip


The horses are now  in quiet work leading up to the show. Today I started riding a new 5 year old for Lorenzo, called Quick Time. He will be coming to Arezzo  to jump the 5 year old classes. At this stage of his career he has jumped in 4 shows, previously with Lorenzo and Mario. He has been  in the box for 4 weeks now due to a foot abscess so today when i rode him he was very fresh but i am looking forward to schooling and jumping him for the next month. Bella & Libertin will be jumping the Gold Tour classes at Arezzo


I am also looking forward  to catching up with all the Australians that are expected to arrive in Arezzo in preparation for the selection series for WEG 2010. It will be great to see familiar faces again! I know there are a lot of stables at Arezzo but just look for the Aussie flag & i shouldn’t be far away.


After Arezzo i have the CSI3* International at Modena & then plan for the CSIO4* at Linz-Ebelsberg  in Austria in May which is a Nations Cup as well as a  COC

We leave for Arezzo at 4am tomorrow (Tuesday) morning. I will blog again a few days after settling in.




Arezzo Countdown!

12 March 2010

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