I was competing on Sunday so we drove down on Friday. Ant and I were stabled in a lovely place just five minutes away from the Burghley grounds, were we met other competitors from different pony clubs. That night me and Ant went for a long hack, just to stretch their legs. We had a delicious BBQ and went to bed nice and early.
The following morning I exercised Cymro in the school and did a bit of jumping. I was feeling confident and ready for it!
We all then decided to go to Burghley. I had never been before, but heard a lot of story’s about the place. It was HUGE! It was confusing to begin with, trying to find your way around the place, but I soon got the hang of it. There were so many shops there, I didn’t know where to start. I bought so many things I didn’t have any money left! So me, Ant and Phoebe decided to leave the shopping for the day and go watch some Cross Country.
It was so exciting and intense! There was a new water jump there so we thought we might watch that one. We found a really good spot where we could see three jumps and the water! We cheered for everyone, but mostly Mary King.
As the day grow on I started to feel more nervous, more scared. The atmosphere of the show had made me realise that I was actually competing in Burghley! The thought had finally sunk in.
When we got back it was dark. But we still had a BBQ, and me, Ant and Phoebe went in the hot tub! We were there for hours…it was so nice!
The next morning was a blur. I just remembered everyone rushing round and passing things to me. When we reached the ground we got Cymro off and stretched his legs. I went to have a quick look at the ring. It was scary! But I didn’t feel nervous or scared, I felt really confident and I just wanted to get in there and do it. I watched a few, the jumps were bigger than I had imagined and it was different to how I had expected. The dressage and jumping were all in the same ring!
Then came Ants go. But just before she started it poured down with rain, everyone was soaking! She did a perfect dressage test and her jumping round was lovely, unfortunately she just got one pole down. But other than that it was amazing!
I was one of the last to go so i knew the all the scores and had seen everyones round. When i was in the collecting ring my stomach was turning and I felt a bit dizzy. But I got myself together and started warming him in. I was really excited and so thankful to be here that I had forgotten all about being nervous. When they called my name I trotted in and bowed to the judge, even though there were so many people there watching it felt like it was only me. Straight after the dressage I had to do my jumping, you had one warm up fence and I cantered him really positively to it so he knew we were jumping now. The Cross Country was the best bit even though there were only about five jumps it was still really fun!
As soon as I come out the scores were announced. I was in the lead! Everyone came up to me and said well done but five minutes later the tannoy then announced Ihad won! Suddenly mum just bursted out crying and everyone was cheering and patting me and Cymro on the back. I couldn’t believe it! I thought they must have made a mistake, surely I couldn’t have won, I thought! I was too happy for words. They hurried me in for the prize giving. There were so many people, people from the Pony Club i hadn’t seen for years! Even some people I didn’t know were cheering and screaming.
I then had to go in for the championship. I hadn’t prepared at all because I never thought I would win! I wasn’t used to shows so I asked Ant, she gave me some really encouraging words and really help me to relax. I was really scared, and wasn’t expecting anything. I loved doing the gallop bit, so did Cymro! We had to line up, Cymro was buzzing. They pulled me up and a huge smile beamed on my face! I could hear everyone cheering but only faintly, I couldn’t believe we’d won! I looked to my right and saw friends and family crying! I felt a bit emotional. I had only gone there to have fun and try but I had won! I was over joyed! When i did my lap of honour I really went for it!
I left the ring and everyone was laughing, crying, cheering, clapping. I just didn’t know what to say! It was an amazing feeling knowing I had won, for me and F’n’D pony club. I felt so proud!
I’d just like to thank Bethan and the commitee for letting me have this opportunity to compete in such an amazing competition and venue.