Tom kicked off the 2017 season with a couple of advanced horses at Isleham which turned out to be a good plan as while the south was basically calling for the second Ark to be built the team at Isleham enjoyed ground that Tom described as ” Mega” and just a few scattered showers…even if he did have to go all the way to Ely to get it!
Toledo de Kerser started of his season in the perfect way. He won the OI dressage with a 26 which is over 73 % and then executed his awesome double clear for 5th spot with some time penalties cross country. Toledo is one that would rarely be in a winning position at the one days as Tom has to save his “fast days” for the big ones…. he gets a little freaked if he is allowed to go F1 speed on every occasion! Tom described him as “Magic” and that is a pretty cool way to come back out after his first 4 star at Pau last October.
Strike Smartly (Paddy) is a new ride for Tom this season. Owned by Fred and Penny Barker, Paddy is a 10 year old Ghareeb who has been produced by Daisy Berkley to CIC 3 star level. Paddy is a big horse and Daisy has trained him well…. Tom enjoyed a 29 dressage, a rail and a lovely clear cross country on him today and really enjoyed the ride and is looking forward to contesting some bigger tracks this spring.
As well as some nice young horses Tom has also picked up the spring season rides on Lucy Jackson’s 4 star horse Willy Do (Willy)and her really exciting up and coming Superstition (Stinky). Both horses are owned by the Greenlees who have been such staunch supporters of Lucy and since Lucy is (impatiently!) awaiting the birth of her first child which is due mid May hopefully Tom will have some fun with both of them along the way and keep the Greenlees and Lucy entertained at the same time. Tom is rapidly becoming the ‘go to’ rider for those who are pregnant… he is still hoping that Sammi Birch will get pregnant again so he can have Hunter Valley (Gizmo) back! In reality it is a testament to Tom’s reputation and ability that riders trust him with their most prized possessions when they are unable to compete themselves and you cannot get a bigger compliment than that.