Winding down for the year | An Eventful Life

Winding down for the year

Another year is drawing to an end and we are starting to wind down. The last event for the year was Adelaide International and once again it was a fabulous event. We took four horses down this year, Shanghai Joe (Nugget). APH Rusalka (Rupee) both in the 2 star and CP Qualified (Darci) and Taurus (Arvey) in the 4 star. We had a very busy week ahead of us. The boys were all very well behaved for the week.


   Nugget was first horse to head out on the CCI2* course


Nugget had the task of leading everyone out being the first horse in the 2 star and while he did a lovely test he perhaps didn’t score quite as well as he may have if he had been later in the field. I have a soft spot for little Nugget as he was the very first horse that we bred here at Bimbadeen. He has always been a laid back character and he took this trip, his first outside of NSW, in his stride coming home clear and under time cross country and one of only a few clear show jump rounds in the 2 star. We have also just started breaking in his full brother!


Rupees test started out lovely but in the canter work he tried to jump a shadow on the ground and so was a little tense for the remainder of the test leaving him just out of the top 10. He also jumped clear around the tough 2 star track but picked up .4 of a penalty for being 1 second over time. Shane said he was up on his minute markers early in the course so put Rupee in cruise control and realised slightly to late that he needed to pick up the pace. Show jumping Rupee and Shane had a difference in opinion as to who was in charge and unfortunately had 2 down.  The boys finished fourth and seventh respectively.


   Arvey gives this fence plenty of air
   Photo with thanks to Janelle Christopher


After missing his flight to England and a trip to Burghley, Arvey came to Adelaide at a slight disadvantage. He had to have time off to get over the virus that had prevented him from flying overseas and so he headed to Adelaide perhaps not as quite as fit and ready as we would have liked. He also hadn’t had a cross country run since May. But he is a real professional and came out in the dressage and did a lovely test to leave him in third. Cross country he was a little rusty to begin with but soon remembered his job and jumped around clear and fast, picking up just .4 of a penalty. The show jumping would prove to be a tough task and coming into the first line, Shane cut the corner slightly and they had two down. Shane was very happy with him given the year that he has had and is excited for next year after he pulled up feeling fresh enough to passage his way around the presentation!


   Darci has really stepped up this year


Darci has been thrown in the deep end this year, Sydney 2 star, Melbourne 3 star and Adelaide 4 star! It was always going to be a big task for him but Shane felt confident that he could do it and he certainly didn’t disappoint in the dressage. His test was beautiful and left him in the lead going into the cross country. This was always going to be the big test for him given that he has only had half a dozen starts at 3 star level. But he jumped around the course like a pro, gaining more confidence the further he went.  He picked up a few time penalties and dropped back to third behind the more experienced horses Pluto Mio ridden by Stuart TInney and Taurus. He was a little tired for the show jumping and over jumped a little resulting in two rails down but again we took the positives away from the week, remembering that this is only the third preparation he has done in his life. The 4 star boys finished fourth and seventh, slight déjà to the 2 star.


Next year looks to be an exciting one with these four boys plus adding in Virgil who has arrived home from England and is enjoying having a little holiday back in his own paddock.  He kept the quarantine people on their toes, escaping one night only to be found the next morning having a nap outside his girlfriend’s box with empty feed buckets spread all around him!


   'I was just keen to see my girlfriend' said Virgil "and the feedbuckets were in the way!'


We also have Fantastic Mr Fox aka Henry, another home bred superstar. He stepped up to 1 star at the end of the year. He is owned by Lee and Bill Brydon who also had shares in the beautiful Il Vici when he was a racehorse. I told them that next year Henry would be making the trip to Adelaide for the 2 star and that they should book their accommodation now and we would need supporter  t-shirts. A couple of weeks later a parcel showed up in the post with just such a shirt!


   Have shirt - will travel ... hopefully to Adelaide next year!


So all the kids are on holidays now and enjoying the lovely warm weather. We have turned our attention to renovating the flat, fixing fences and general maintenance. It’s also the time for a few refreshing beers and some backyard cricket. Olivia is quite excited with the Christmas tree and decorations going up around the place and looking forward to Santa’s visit. I am actually heading off on holiday for a couple of weeks to the WA coast, my first proper holiday in a long long time.


   Olivia looks ready to pounce on a cricket watching, beer drinking Shane!


We heard on the radio the other week that the average Australian will put on 1.1kg over the festive season and drink twice as much alcohol as they normally would. I’m pretty sure that everyone at Bimbadeen is well on their way! Have a very Merry Christmas everyone!