Thursday, 2 January 2014

Garstang Show

Photo copyright Garstang Show

Back at the start of the month we all set off for Garstang Show.  It was the usual four of us, but we had Helen's sister Megan along to help this time.  We were due to perform our double act show - for the last time this year!  Last time we did it, back at Byfleet Parish Day, it went really well, so I was hoping for a repeat performance.  

On arrival we were met by a lady called Sally, and her two dogs Guess and What.  Sally took me up to see the arena, and it was an absolute monster!  Easily the biggest arena Casper would ever have seen, and probably one of the biggest for Tinker too.  Luckily it was divided up for the various showing sections, so I managed to arrange for some of the barriers to remain in place, meaning we would work at one end of the arena - right in front of the grandstand!

In the morning we had a really good warm up. I'm very lucky that Helen is able to warm the Tink up for me, as it means I can concentrate my efforts on Casper.  Megan lunged him for me and he was lovely to vault on, although this always makes me nervous for the show!  It was soon time to go up for the show, the only slight problem we encountered was the incredibly efficient stewards, who wouldn't let us go up to the arena as we didn't have our wristbands on.  Cue a quick sprint back to the lorry for Helen!  

As often happens where there's lots of showing classes the arena was running slightly behind schedule.  However, as we were only using half the arena it meant the next showing class could go on at the same time as our display.  I knew my two would be fine with it, but I was very impressed with the showing horses, as they had to contend with us whilst trying to put on their best showing effort.  At one point I was charging around doing Roman riding, with somebody doing their individual display - obviously not ideal for them, I hope they got extra marks for not being fazed by us!  It looked nice though, as the class was for coloured ridden horses, so they all fitted in nicely with my two!!

The show all went through really well, and I was especially pleased with the Roman riding as I'd put Casper back on the outside.  It makes sense as he has a longer stride than Tinker, but Tinker had taken exception to it back in May at Ilkley Carnival and I didn't want a repeat of that episode!  Now that Casper has more confidence he's more than capable of going on the outside and it worked well, so hopefully we can stay like this from now on.  

The crowd were brilliant all the way through, and clapped and cheered in all the right places which was lovely! Following the show we went for the meet and greet and were absolutely mobbed.  We must have been there for a good hour chattering to everybody, and we sold lots of horseshoes, posters and key rings.  We met a couple of local dignitaries, and had our photos taken with them, which I think have now made their way onto the Garstang Show website!  Everybody was so welcoming and friendly, I really hope it's a show we go back to another year.

It was quite a long way between the lorry and the arena, and unfortunately the trolley decided it just couldn't cope with the return journey - one of its wheels sheared clean off!  Luckily there was lots of young farmers to hand, and Helen soon press ganged a couple of them in to carrying all our props and kit back down to the lorry.  No mean feat when you have eight bases each weighing fifteen kilos, as well as all the other kit!

Next week we're up in Northumberland for Slaley Show.  Ben is going to be there with the Eagle and Vulture Team as well, and I always enjoy having him at shows with us so I'm looking forward to it.  I'll let you know how we get on, but in the meantime you can see some photos from Garstang by clicking here.

Love Rosie x

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