CCI* Osberton

CCI* Osberton International Horse Trials

Rebecca had two seven-year-old horses contesting the CCI* at Osberton International Horse Trials & Young Horse Championship, September 28-October 2: Very Good Tempo, ‘Tempo’ owned by the late Christina Knudson and Harlequins Pretty Puissance, ‘Ruby’, owned by Kelly McCarthy-Maine.

“It was a great experience for both of the horses, they enjoyed galloping on the slightly longer track in the CCI* and I knew they were both capable of jumping clear rounds in the show jumping. Harlequins Pretty Puissance, ‘Ruby’ has gotten a lot more confident in the dressage phase and Very Good Tempo, ‘Tempo’ did a nice test for 36.9”, Rebecca says.

“Plus my parents, Mary and Bob, were over visiting and Lucinda Fredericks kindly lent us her big lorry, so we had seven people staying away for the week which was a lot of fun”, explains Rebecca.

Cast your votes

With so many people staying together, some decisions were made based on the outcome of informal polls, for example: what to have for dinner, 3 vegetarian vs 4 meat eaters, whether or not to put butter into coffee, 5 ‘no ways’ vs 2 ‘yes please’, and what music to play, 6 Canadians vs 1 Brit – Tragically Hip all week hurray!

When it came time to decide what wine to have with supper in the evening, the vote was split: 3 reds vs 2 whites vs 2 that were utterly delighted with whatever happened to be open.

As Rebecca pondered over what jacket to wear for the show jumping phase, the whole the crew unanimously voted for her red team jacket, last worn during the Olympics in Rio. ‘The red jacket’ seemed to work it’s magic, with both Tempo and Ruby jumping immaculate clear rounds to finish on their dressage score.

horseandhoundcropHorse&Hound on Very Good Tempo’s second place finish:

“… running him [winner Sam Ecroyd on Christoff] on  close was Canadian Rebecca Howard with Very Good Tempo, a Tam Tam son of the Selle Francais mare Eleveine. Rebecca, who finished at the top ten in the Olympics, had contemplated running the horse in the seven-year-old championship, but left him in the CCI*.

“I decided it was the right level for him at the moment”, said Rebecca of the late Christina Knudson’s horse. He has plenty of blood and is a rangy type – I hope he is a four-star horse in the making”.

Though out of the ribbons in 29th place, Harlequins Pretty Puissance, ‘Ruby’ finished her first CCI* double-clear on her dressage score, moving up more than 20 places with her immaculate clear round in the show jumping. Of roughly 138 entries, less than 25% of the horses jumped clear in the show jumping.

Rebecca had this to say about Harlequins Pretty Puissance: “Ruby has had a great first season eventing in the UK – she is a bright, athletic mare who really loves her jumping. There is lots more to come from Ruby and after her nice holiday in the field, I can’t wait to see what we can do in 2017”, explains Rebecca.

Ruby and Tempo had a great time away at Osberton and would like to thank their grooms, head girl Pippa Allan and working pupil Olivia Alstad for feeding them so many carrots. Honourable mention goes to working pupil Danielle Searson, who stayed home at Rosegarth. While Danielle may have drawn an unlucky chore straw with several fields to poo-pick, Danielle was able to put the training she has had with Rebecca to great effect, schooling the horses at home and keeping them on track for Bricky Horse Trials the following weekend.