So it must be time for a 2014 recap. Here’s the bare statistics:
Training kilometres: no idea. I need to keep better records this year!
Competitive kilometres ridden: 642 (400 miles, give or take)
One vet out for lameness (our first ever vet out, and what a time to do it – at a National Championship).
There were really only 2 major goals for 2014:
1. Qualify to ride at the Quilty. Done.
2. Get a Quilty buckle. Nope. Bugger. We gave it a good shake though, and the lameness that ended our ride was a “one of those shitty things” lameness, not an ongoing issue. Could have been worse. And we did (mostly) have fun doing it:
We had a full year: life dealt us a few curve balls, such as when Mojo died unexpectedly in January and Savannah had to step up to the plate:
She and Ashleigh have forged a solid partnership this year despite her “pigrooting after jumps and when asked to canter in the arena” habit. If nothing else she has taught Ashleigh to sit up!
I attended plenty enough rides, including vetting at a ride in Katanning and one in the pastoral country:
Some of them I rode at:
We got a new foalie:
And she grew. as foals do: she’s now a year old.
This bloke arrived:
And is now under saddle: (and looking much better than this!)
Towards the end of the year, Angel retired, after surgery to remove her eye due to a growing melanoma. She will be here till the end of her days and remain Mrs Reliable for a trail ride with visitors:
She’s just not up to showjumping any more.
So what of 2015?
Well, we have a few goals. I am always leery of having an actual “plan” as that always goes South quite fast when horses are involved but we will be busy as usual: I seem to have ended up with not one but TWO potential mounts for Lauren to take on now that Angel has retired. So although Joe will have the summer off, I won’t!
So meet Chime: a 14.2hh 4 year old Standardbred mare
And Fuzzy, a 14.3hh Australian Riding Pony:
They have both been started under saddle, but I am going through everything from scratch to see if there are any holes in the training they have had. Might be time to swing a leg over Chime at the end of this week…
So, 2015 goals:
1. Get Ashleigh and Savannah through 2 x 25 mile rides and through their first 50 miler, with a view to then getting them qualified in 2016.
2. Get Lauren well settled on one of the two horses above. (I like them both, but I can’t have 7 horses, so one will have to go back to the owner).
3. Ride middleweight again (I have been a heavyweight all season and I shouldn’t be). I need to get back to running after the Xmas break: I was running 5 or 6km twice a week and doing one interval session before the holidays but haven’t run for about 2 weeks now).
4. Get Pete and Mac through a 40km ride…
You may note most of my goals are for other people, with me as support crew. This is the way family life goes but it is also partly deliberate:
- Joe is still only 9 and it won’t do him any harm at all to have a season of shorter rides.
- I was pretty self centred and targeted on the Quilty in 2014: it’s time to get out of that (somewhat selfish) head space and enjoy endurance as a family sport if I can.
- We now have four horses in the paddock that need my attention, and who need to put some miles under their belt (not to mention get a bit fitter – Savannah in particular is OBESE!)
So there it is: modest goals compared to 2014, but they involve horses so anything is possible! Meanwhile, Happy New Year to all who read this and may your gods go with you into 2015.