Prepped and ready for Adelaide

      Showjumping at Boneo Park


Since arriving home from the UK, I’ve been focussed on preparing Muso for the CIC3* at Adelaide and the CCI3* at Wallaby Hill (which will be our first 3DE at 3* level). I expect the step between CIC3 star and CCI 3 star to be quite a big one, so my preparation has been carefully planned and thought out.

Muso tends to be quite an incredible ride on cross country, which has meant that the competitions he has completed leading into the events have been largely dressage and showjumping focussed.  At this point, it’s nice to have only the two FEI horses (with Shinakuma - Kiwi also aimed towards Wallaby Hill in the CCI*) as it allows me to directly target our weaknesses and continue further consolidating our strengths.

In terms of fitness preparation, we have changed our routine somewhat, mainly to add variation to prevent boredom.  Although it is important to have horses super fit for Three Day Events, Muso is still quite young at nine years of age. I want him to be competing for a good while to come yet, so I have devised a fitness regime that maximises further cardio/respiratory development, while minimising stress and undue impact on his legs.



My Three Day Event preparation usually includes Interval training on a hill, which is quite steep, therefore speed is kept low and their heart rate will be much more easily increased. Muso’s workouts also include hacking about 3 kilometres up and down hills at a walk, finished off by trotting to the top of a lovely long, and again, quite steep hill. As well as being quite low impact when compared to the cardio workout he gets, being on the road, it also ensures that he is legged up! In addition to our usual fitness regime, we also added gallops at the Bunyip State forest this season. These gallops can be quite lengthy if you pick the right hill but the ground is consistent, regardless of the weather!

Recently Muso and I were included in the National Recognition Squad for 2016 thanks to our finishing score at Melbourne 3DE. As a result we have been to Werribee several times to train with National Coach Prue Barrett.  Prue is a very effective coach and seems to have made some incredible improvements with us, so I cannot wait to see how this influences our dressage score!


      Dressage in Adelaide in 2015


I also consider myself fortunate to have had the support of Jamie Coman, who has continued to assist Muso and I in the showjumping. This phase unfortunately proved to be our weakest at last year’s AI3DE so in specifically working to improve this phase, we have travelled to a range of different showjumping events to gain more experience and further develop our skills in this discipline. As a result Muso has been jumping consistently around some big tracks, including the course last weekend at Boneo.

With almost all of our preparation complete, I am very excited to be back in Adelaide! Adelaide is a unique and incredible event, so I cannot wait to gallop through the parks, over main roads, and jump before the sky scrapers again! But first the trot up today .....................


      At the first horse inspection in 2015