Wet Windsor and mud, glorious mud

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Fashion at Windsor
Fashion at Windsor

Windsor Horse Show would have been a fabulous event; it had all the right ingredients; fabulous venue, amazing horses, retailers with a wide variety of goodies ranging from dog coats through to tweed caps and Royalty coming to watch.

In fact, on day two, it has been a fabulous event, except it has been raining so much that we have been walking around in mud, and it kept raining most of the afternoon, so we were also getting rather wet! Not the best weather for the show, unfortunately. The main (Castle) arena is an all weather surface, as is the Frogmore Arena where a lot of showjumping took place, but the poor old competitors in the Copper Arena started on grass, but there’s not much of that left now!

The retailers, already hit by the Badminton cancellation, didn’t have a very happy afternoon, as the skies opened, and many people left, so they were not very busy.

As I walked around the area, there were so many people talking about what a huge blow the Badminton cancellation had been to them, and also how the weather had kept the usual crowds away from this event as well.

The coffee man, obviously not an optimistic chap, suggested that perhaps the final two days might not go ahead. The main carpark was closed, and that caused a bit of mayhem, with long queues affecting the competitors coming in. There was talk of lorries being towed in. They will need to be towed out after all that rain this afternoon.

Still, rain and mud aside, it is good to be back at a horse competition. My main purpose of this trip was to go EVENTING but that has been thwarted so a good show will have to suffice.

Pippa Funnell
I finally found an eventer: Pippa Funnell was fifth in a jumping class.

The news that Chatsworth was cancelled came through this morning, not unexpectedly but very sad for all those who had big plans on going.

I hadn’t got as far as booking my train up to the event, as I wasn’t very optimistic that it would proceed, so now my final days in the UK will be spent in London, rather than watching the likes of legends such as Toddy, Andrew Nicholson, and Blyth Tait.

The twitter account went wild with frustrated eventers ranting at the weather. Their horses are at the peak of their fitness, and desperately need a run but it is not to be. Even Aston Le Walls, which has a reputation of being able to be held in most damp conditions, has had to cancel. It really is wet.

No doubt the sun will come out and the weather will come right on Monday, once I have left the country. Here’s hoping, for the riders and horses’ sake anyway.

So, back to the Windsor show. There was a lot to look at (both in the retail and horse side). I didn’t even get across to watch the driving. Just covering the three arenas was enough. From Riding for the Disabled fancy dress competition, through to jumping competitions at 1.5m with cobs, coloured and miniatures in between. All with the rather large castle in the background!

A fun day, but I’m bound to get some funny looks as I make my way back into London on the tube given the state of my trousers and boots …

Beautifully turned out ponies - but the legs ....

 

Jane Thompson

Jane has always had a keen interest in horses, and was an active competitor in equestrian events from her early days until the late 1980s. » Read Jane's profile

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