Posted by on April 8, 2011

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Oliver TownendOliver TownendOliver Townend

So far so good…

Hi All,

Well, so far so good, it’s been a very busy but pretty successful start to the season and I thought I’d better get a newsletter done before Badminton or it will suddenly be May!

As usual we started out at Isleham, and I couldn’t have asked more of the horses. Power Line was mega, winning his section and then doing the same at Poplar – he makes my job easy, he has ability and enthusiasm to burn.

Neo du Breuil has also come out really well this season, having missed last year through injury – he’s very full of himself and I’m excited about his future. Two wins out of two starts can’t be bad! Jeepers Creepers is producing better and better dressage tests, while Belmont Virlandie surprised me with a win at Tweseldown. At Belton ODT Master Rose gave me the best cross country round to date – he met every fence bang on and will now head for Luhmuhlen.

Carousel Quest has had his pre-Badminton run – I took him steadily around Gatcombe and then just did the dressage and show jumping at Belton, and will probably do the same at Weston this weekend. He’s very well and could do with settling a bit, but doesn’t need to practice cross country – he knows his job.

Ashdale Cruise Master is also heading for Badminton, and with a runner up spot at Poplar and then a win in the CIC*** at Belton last weekend he feels better than I could have hoped. He’s changed, both mentally and physically, over the winter and is much stronger now. I admit that last year he didn’t produce quite the work I was hoping for, it’s taken time to build a partnership with him – but this year he feels a different horse.

The Novice horses are, so far, living up to expectations – all my early mornings seem to be paying off. None of them have disappointed me, and are coming on with every run.

So all in all a good few weeks. It’s Weston Park this weekend, and then Badminton – I  hope that you will all be cheering me on. It will be good to be back riding there, after having to watch from the sidelines nursing my broken bones last year!


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