Le Lion d’Angers Dressage

GBR-Tom McEwen rides Lordships Graffalo during the first day of Dressage for the CCI3*-L7YO. 2019 FRA-Mondial du Lion – FEI World Breeding Championships. Le Lion d’Angers. France. Thursday 17 October. Copyright Photo: Libby Law Photography

The sun came out on Thursday morning for Lordships Graffalo’s ( Walter’s)  dressage test but it was on decidedly soggy footing!  At least as 2nd in they had some traction and the grass still looked pretty green.  The judging at Le Lion is always true to a Championship in that they mark tough and although Walter did a lovely smooth test which no doubt would have been in the high 20’s anywhere else a score of 31.8 was posted on the board. It wasn’t an unfair mark and Walter certainly put his best foot forward and rose to the occasion as best he could.

Friday morning dawned misty and cool but with the promise of some more weak sunshine.  The arena had been moved slightly overnight which meant that the muddy track was now on the 3/4 line which was sort of odd but I guess the best that they could do!  By the time Brookfield Benjamin Bounce  (Bounce) went in the afternoon there were multiple tracks and the poor German horse that went before him looked most confused to have to be asked to plough through such heavy going! Fortunately Bounce does have a 4WD button and he used it to much advantage as he effortlessly dealt with the footing and produced a great test.  A slight blip when he got a bit stuck in the first turn on the haunches was the only set of lower marks and a score of 27.2 was good enough to propel them into 2nd place with the last third of the field left to go.

Quite how Anna has Bounce looking so brilliantly white in such conditions is testament to her ability! It’s a long old hike up to the main arena from the stables as well… Bounce must have tip toed his way up!

Saturday morning sees the 6 year olds go cross country before the 7 year olds head out after lunch  (most civilised!). The course is the usual stunning display of intricately  designed fences with everything from guitars to spiders depicted as fences and with simply amazing fence decorations.  It is a unique event for sure and who knows what stars of the future it be shaping over this weekend.