Saturday, 31 July 2010

The long and the short of it

It was so great being back showing a pony again. I realised that it had been a couple of years since I'd done any showing and I've missed it. There's something about being out with livestock at their peak condition, with like minded people, that's very engaging.

The first bit of good news is that by the morning the weather forecast had changed totally. No rain was due til the afternoon, so by the time we arrived at the showground the sun was shining, and it was not too hot for the animals, with hardly any wind at all. In other words perfect conditions for showing.

Then the steward directing us turned out to be none other than Doddy Weir, Scotland's Rugby Union lock, who was such a warm smiley person. He was dressed up in some rather natty tartan trews and was head and shoulders taller than anyone else there. He insisted on having his photo taken with me, before wishing us luck.

We spent a pleasant half hour tarting Bridge (full name Bridge of Transy) up, til she was looking good from head to hoof.

Our class was pretty small with 3 Exmoor ponies and 4 Shetlands. We came 3rd after a rather handsome Exmoor stallion and a lovely Exmoor mare, who had the loveliest eye. But because we came ahead of all the other Shetlands we were awarded the Shetland prize and were put forward for the Shetland championship.

After an hour we went forward again, and we won! So we were Shetland overall champion and we got the Transy Cup, which had been donated by The Transy Stud... all very prophetic given that Bridge is a Transy pony. Her name was already engraved on it as she had won it back in 2007, and Anne was delighted. As, I have to say, was I.

And that's where the good luck ended. We went in for the overall show championship but we didn't even get a look in. It was won by a Welsh Section B mare with a foal at foot. And very showy she was too, so well deserved. Still we did pretty well I think.

So we came away with our winnings of £5 for a third prize, some nice rosettes, and a cup, all done in lovely sunny weather. By the time we finished the wind had picked up and the rain had started, so we really were very lucky indeed.

I will post some pics of Bridge with her prizes when my beloved has managed to download them for me, as they're on his iPhone. He just happens to have a busy day doing a 95 mile (yes, I said 95 mile!) bike race round the Borders today, so I will have to do my supporter's bit for him as he did for me yesterday.

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