Fontainebleau Europeans and Fourth for team GBR

Maisie and her team mates came 4th in Fontainebleau at the Pony European championships in France.

What a great team effort bringing in the highest team average ever for GBR over 70% !! We still have a way to go to beat the Germans and the Dutch but think we were underscored on the whole as a nation and feel the judges did not use the full range of marks for all the nations! But that aside what a show they put on for these children. Fontainebleau is a stunning venue and the team spirit  and support from all the disciplines from GBR was fantastic.

Maisie and Rembrandt last to go in the team test was dissapointed to make a mistake after the first halt, cantering and starting on 44% which she managed to get back to 69.3% which was a feat in itself, she was glad to get it back but so upset for her and Remys last show together.

She did not let the team down and her team mates were so supportive and they knew she would have had to have gained 76+% to have been in with a chance of getting the bronze. With the judging as it was this was an impossible task and this was put to rest and on with the individual.

Rules changed last year and instead of the top 25 going through to the individual, reverse draw and a consolation comp for the bottom 25, they decided to let everyone go through to the individual(52 combinations) random draw over 2 days. No consolation comp and top 15 from 52 to the Kur.

Maisie ended up with an early draw on the 1st day, 3rd to go, a lovely test no mistakes and beautiful canter work, rein back good simple changes all good. We were dissapointed for Maisie when the judges yet again sat on 6.5s and 7s which left Maisie and Rembrandt on 69.1% less than the day before with the mistake!! Such a shame as after the second day she missed out on the Kur by one place and it was the first time they have not made the kur ever.  I felt that the lesser nations in all the tests were not marked fully, if its good give it an 8 or a 9, if its poor mark it accordingly, but don’t sit on the fence.

These children are the best in their country, in Europe and this is the equivalent of the Olympics for them, they have worked all year for this been supported by parents, trainers,owners, friends and family. They should be given the full range of marks no matter what flag you have on your jacket.

A perfect example being a final comment on one of Maisies sheets “I loved your counter canter!!, especially your serpentines” this was marked at an eight which is a good mark, but if you as a judge at the European Championships love something and single it out for comment surely its worth a 9 or 9.5!

Barring these feelings which were very strong amongst the crowd and from all nations, we are still behind the top German and Dutch riders but not too far. Work to be done for next years pony team, lots of PR and test training in front of the International judges to see exactly what they want.

Time now for us to reflect on what a fantastic 2 seasons we have had with this fabulous pony Rembrandt, who never fails to amaze us and still has people  exclaiming over how beautiful,brave and talented he is even when things have not gone his and Maisie’s way. Maisie has had the time of her life and he will be a hard act to follow.   Onto horses for us and the hunt is on for Maisies Junior ride.

Rembrandt is now for sale and ready to take his next rider into the realms of top class International competition and the ride of their lives, contact us for details.

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