Monthly diary — April

Lucinda Green

It’s been a hectic month, teaching, writing and occasionally managing to ride. My ‘XC the Safe Way’ clinics have gone well so far and the standard of riding has been very pleasing.

I decided to start Bill off with the Open Novice at Tweseldown but very nearly didn’t make it. Four days before we were out on a long hack, when suddenly there was an almighty bang and, before I knew it, I was tipped off backwards, landing heavily. Bill looked set to disappear over Salisbury Plain while I sat there feeling rather sore and dazed. Fortunately he turned and came back as I rather sheepishly realised what had happened – I’d been texting and hadn’t seen a large branch looming. The bang was it hitting my hat, before it swept me off Bill, still holding my Blackberry. The moral: don’t use your phone while driving or riding.

Fortunately, thanks to plenty of ice and homeopathy, we made it to Tweseldown where Bill did a lovely test, a beautiful clear jumping round and coasted the cross-country. I think we’ll head to Gatcombe for the Intermediate next. By then Bill will be running under his new sponsorship deal, from Succeed. This digestive conditioner, produced in the US, aims to help the equine gut function properly despite the unnatural way we now tend to feed our horses. As the use of compound feeds has increased, so has the incidence of colic and ulcers – even a mild colic was once considered a sign of bad horse management, yet now even top-flight horses are dying from it.

If we are to insist on feeding horses unnaturally, at least Succeed offers a way of keeping them healthy. Bill loves it.
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