A day’s eventing usually coincides with a very early start, so if you are not prepared in advance you can end up arriving at the venue flustered and not in the best frame of mind to complete your dressage test.
Event rider and trainer Harriet Morris-Baumber is used to ridiculously early mornings, setting her alarm for 3.30am to travel to events up and down the country.
Here, Harriet offers her top tips on how to be prepared to ensure you can jump in the lorry safe in the knowledge that you have everything you need for the day.
- Wash and plait your horse the day before but ensure you always check what’s lurking under the hood and rugs before you leave home. It is far easier to wash or re-plait at home than it is once you arrive and the excitement starts to make your horse fidget 100 times more than normal!
- Re-assess all your kit well in advance of the event and replace missing items. You might look and see the bottle of fly spray looks full but does the spray still work?
- Make a tick list of items and cross them off as you load them into your lorry.
- Where possible double up on items such as fly spray, sponges, grooming kit etc so you can have one ‘horse box kit’ and one ‘home kit’, then they can all live together in a storage box so that you just have one box to lift into your lorry or trailer and not 25 different items.
- Have boxes within your main box for other kit such as for plaiting kits or studs, then when you need to do an emergency repair to some wayward plaits you can find everything you need in one go and you’re not rummaging around to find the comb in a massive box.
- If you have a grey horse invest in a really good stain removing spray. There are lots of good ones on the market and they are quicker and easier to use to remove last minute stains than trying to wash with shampoo.
- Clean studs and give them a good soak in WD40 well before an event, this really helps them go in easier than if they have become rusty.
- Clean stud holes the day before and pop in a flat road stud or blank stud, this way the hole and the threads stay really clean and then all you need to do when you get to the event is swap them over.
Harriet is available for dressage, show-jumping and cross-country lessons at her base near York.