Last Touch (Jack) continues his rehab and is now back trotting and not only is he looking good, he feels amazing, in fact he is feeling extremely well within himself!! If the results from his scans are good he will have a proper break with few weeks in the field before we start his proper build up for the following season.

Cooley Enno and Well Foxed are still out on their holidays and loving every minute of it, so much so, that when I pop over to see them, they are not rushing up to me to be brought in!!

After a few mornings Autumn hunting, where he has been very well behaved, Langton (Corky) was my mount at the Heythrop Hunt opening meet – he will go a few more times ‘proper’ hunting as it is beginning to make a ‘man’ of him.

A new addition to the yard is an ex-racehorse, Fort Smith owned by John Beswick, who is recently out of training and after just a few weeks is now really beginning to take to his new career off the track. He has gone on a fun ride at Cotswold Farm Park, where he had to ‘man up’ and not worry about getting his feet wet crossing the river and has been to a hunter trial, all new experiences for him. Coming from a NH racing background, jumping cross-country fences was a new experience, but he naturally is very scopey with a good technique and keeps a good rhythm, it is now just educating him about the different fences that as an event horse he will need to jump, he has come one massively in a short time and is game on, which makes my job easier.

Bridge of Diamonds, (Harry) owned by Lorna Vaughan is a horse that I have had to take slowly due to his immaturity, but he has always possessed power and range, it was just a case of him learning to use it in the right way and therefore, I had to ensure that the correct foundations were in place. He has a lot of natural ability and is bold and brave and although at times he wasn’t quite sure of what he is doing, with his intelligence and now with more rideability he is beginning to make positive steps forward – with horses like Harry there is no substitute for time and patience and fortunately his owner has always understood this and hopefully her patience will be rewarded in the future.

Both Fort Smith and Bridge of Diamonds will go to our local cross country schooling course at Lyneham Equestrian Centre a few more times before it closes for the winter months, after which there will be trips to all-weather schooling arenas in preparation for their eventing debuts in 2019.

After a few days Autumn hunting, Cosmos du Figuier is also taking a well earned holiday and once he, Well Foxed and Cooley Ennos are up and running my plan is to put on my proper ‘show jumper’s’ hat and take on the show jumping boys at their own game in order for me and the horses to be confident and practiced at this phase before the start of the eventing season in March (weather permitting!!) There will be quite a few forays to Addington and Summerhouse Equestrian Centres over the next few months.

Turning 21 years of age in October brought the most lovely present of a portrait of the horse that has been so influential to the start of my ‘professional’ eventing career and I could not be happier than the likeness that Lucy Milne has captured of Jack, which will always hang in pride of place wherever I am.