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3 Did the course ride as you thought it would? Yes it did, although I did have a couple of near misses on both horses. When Stormhill Michael jumped the sunken road on a bit of an angle he lost a leg and fell into the sunken road so I had to do a quick rethink and take the 4 long option coming out. Although that was unplanned it is certainly something that, as a rider, you know might happen so you have to be prepared for it. The second How did your horses pull up after the event? mistake came at the hollow fence, a rail to a hollow with Both horses pulled up fine and were completely injury three to four strides to a big corner. He didn’t really jump free and being injury free is what made show jumping the hollow fence probably but again we managed to pull day so easy. With no injuries to treat after cross country out and do the option but those two mistakes did add to the horses must have slept well and I know I did. Both our time penalties. Inonothing and Michael had three weeks off after Inonothing put in an extra stride at the water, which was Badminton and are now back in work. a bit unnerving because it meant we got pretty close Did you mange to have a good celebration after to the last element but he was quite happy to jump it Badminton or was it back to business as usual the next anyway. At the last part of the sunken road we also put in day? an extra stride but got away with it. I just held tight and hoped he would take off and he did – it wasn’t quite in We are only 45 minutes away from Badminton so we the plan, but he is the type of horse to add a stride rather drove home that night and were greeted at the front than take one out and I know what he is capable of. gate by about 100 kids and their families, many of them I’m assuming you were pretty nervous going into show clients, all cheering, waving flags and balloons which jumping, how do you keep your nerves under control? was just amazing. There were also many, many bottles of champagne popped that night. Georgina and I were No I wasn’t nervous. I have put in a lot of time and effort mentally and physically exhausted and I think we passed into mental preparation in the months and even years out about 1am but the party kept going a lot longer. prior to Badminton. I knew my horses were perfectly The following morning we certainly knew we had partied capable of jumping clear rounds. They have both jumped because I only managed to ride 3 horses in the afternoon hundreds of clear rounds so there was no reason for them and even then I felt particularly useless. not to jump another one on that particular day. It is just But we were back into things right away and were out a case of controlling your mental attitude and giving competing the next weekend. But there was nothing yourself the ability to perform at your best. normal about that event because so many people kept What was the first things that went through your head coming up to congratulate us. It took us an hour to walk when you knew you had won the event that most event from the lorry to the secretary’s tent to get numbers and riders in the world would love to win? back again because of people stopping to talk to us. But It was one of sheer relief and enjoying the moment. Ten the whole event made it really dawn on us how much years ago when I won Bramham I wasn’t really sure how celebrity status we had achieved by winning Badminton. the English public would take to a complete unknown . winning that event so I felt extremely self conscious during the prize giving and didn’t really understand how to enjoy it. But I have now been in the country long enough now to know I have a very good rapport with the general equestrian public and certainly have a very good rapport with all my fellow competitors. So I just enjoyed the moment. I waved to the crowd and jumped around like an 1 Tom McDermott on Hugo at Youth Olympics/IOC, Liao Yujie idiot. 2 Tapner wins Badminton/Mitsubishi Motors, Kit Houghton 3 Paul Tapner, dressage phase, Badminton 2010/ Mitsubishi Motors, Kit Houghton 4 Bill Levett at Badminton 2010/Mitsubishi Motors, Kit Houghton 43


Equestrian_NSW_Yearbook_2010
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