Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Sinead's Boekelo Update

"There can only be one winner of Boekelo, but everyone else is going to have a bloody good time!" has been the quote repeated throughout the stables and common area's at Boekelo CCI ***. I feel like this is the right event with the right group of people/horses and most definitely the right time to be here in Holland. At Bad Boekelo (our hotel) the four of us (Will, Doug,Tiana and I) have very quickly become like family members due to the fact that we are all staying in a 2 bedroom apartment together. Unfortunately when living with two boys being like a "family" means politeness is out the window. Tiana and I have found ourselves speechless and a little grossed out on more than one occasion, but mostly there has been a lot of laughing!

We had our trot up and briefing today which both went well and then we took off to look at the course. I knew that I liked the idea of going on this trip for the experience of travel etc. but when I walked this track I realized that my horse nor I have competed with atmosphere like this. I am feeling like this experience will help in future competitions where hopefully we will be competing in an official team championship. The knowledge on how our horses and how individually we will handle this type of "high profile" event will be invaluable . I'm not kidding you when I'm saying that literal bars( for drinking alcohol) are built into the jumps! There are supposed to be around 40,000 spectators and the galloping lanes at times are only about 5 ft in width. The track is 10min 45 sec and is mostly flat terrain in and out of woods, stadiums, trade fairs, restaurants, lounge areas and occasionally an old fashioned field!

Dressage starts tomorrow and because of the unofficial team competition here we got to decide our order of go. Doug will be starting us off around 9 in the morning. Doug's horse is green and will benefit from less of a crowd also Doug handles being the the first of the the day pressure very well. Will and his mare will go next tomorrow around 1:45 Tiana will go Friday at 11:30 and I will finish off with Tate around 4:00pm. We will go in the same order on cross country day. We are all feeling excited and eager to compete. The horses all traveled well and now it is just a matter of preparing properly to get the best horse we can in the ring. All I want to do is ride 5 times a day and practice every move in the test and then jump 1000 jumps but instead I am trying to keep myself occupied by sitting back and watching the likes of Mary King, William Fox-Pitt, Bettina Hoy, Clayton Fredricks and on and on and on... There are 104 starters and every nation from Australia to Sweden representing so its enough to keep me from annoying Tate and keep my eyes peeled to see who is going to be walking past my stall next. The organizing committee is working on live feed from Boekelo so stay tuned I will email it to john before cross country day. To everyone at Fair Hill good luck! We will be working hard and enjoying this experience here for sure!

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