Thursday, 2 June 2016

Rockingham Castle International Horse Trials

Rockingham Horse Trials was another first for me in 2016. My main purpose in attending was to see Vicki Hancox and her lovely horse Uluru in their first 1 Star but I took the opportunity to capture action from all around the 1 Star cross country course as well.

Rockingham is one of those places that to me is further away than it should be! But some motorway driving on a Saturday morning saw me arriving in Rockingham under grey skies in time for a walk around to introduce myself and get my bearings before Vicki's show jumping. The good thing about the international events is that things generally happen on time. None of this "the start schedule is just there to prove it is logistically possible to get all those horses through all three phases in the allotted time!"

There was a "so you're Harveywetdog moment" in the secretary's tent before I headed off to video the first half of the cross country course. The Rockingham water complex comes early on (fences 6 and 7) and was spectacularly dressed with flow water and a couple of abandoned JCBs to distract the horses. (I had been promised well dressed fences and this proved to be the case). Having completed the first loop back to the car I swapped the monopod for the tripod and set off to the show jumping.

Uluru (Roo) jumped well with just one fence down in a well disciplined round. Roo was followed into the arena by Kitty King so I was able to capture her round as well. It was then back to the cross country.

Not knowing the course meant I didn't really know where the best place was going to be to watch Vicki go passed. I decided on the Quarry complex and although Vicki gave me a slight scare with a stop at the water she schooled Roo round to make sure I videoed her at this arrangement of fences.

It remained a grey and windy day with rain threatened for later. So once I'd completed the 1 star cross country and a little #liveyourstory2016 interview with Vicki outside Roo's stable I set off back cross country for the drive home.