[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]International event riders Kevin and Emma McNab have a string of horses competing regularly which requires a lot of planning and good organisation, from deciding which classes to enter to the actual day at the competition. The Avant sponsored team provide advice on being prepared as the winter dressage and show jumping season approaches.
Management of all horses and ponies at competitions is very important down to the last detail and being organised. Planning your trip can make all the difference between a good day or a bad one.
Packing for a Competition
When it comes to packing the lorry for a competition, everyone on the yard has certain responsibilities.
Emma makes a list of tack and equipment we need for each horse, a list for our riding gear, including shirt, breeches, boots and jackets, and we also take spare clothes in case of bad weather.
Our grooms load all of tack and feed but if anything is forgotten it is our fault as we made the lists!
When we return home after the competition it is quite amusing, we go into ‘ant army’ mode – everyone knows their job, the horses are unloaded first, undressed and put to bed, then the tack and all the huge amount of things we seem to take is put away – even when it is very late, as then it’s one less job in the morning.
Managing Horses at Competitions
At day shows we like to arrive two hours before the test or our show jumping rounds, allowing the horses plenty of time to relax and work in. Ensuring plenty of time is available is the key – arriving late and getting in a flap will only transfer to your horse and by then you might as well throw your entry money down the drain!
Coping with Nerves and Tension
We try to relax the horses as much as possible in the run up to a competition and some of them benefit from being turned out the night before.
Every horse is different with little quirks and preferences. We plan around the ‘times’ and decisions are made depending on the horses nature and how they are acting.
On arrival at a competition, we try to get the horses out of the box to walk in hand and graze as we find that this gives them a chance to stretch their legs and have a good look around without being asked to do anything. We also spend some time grooming and preparing them.
Good management when at competitions is key to success. You need to be organised, keep calm yourself and have a good team of positive people around you in order to keep the mood relaxed. All in all remember that you are there to have fun and enjoy your horse – good luck!
Kevin and Emma go from strength to strength in their eventing careers and running hand in hand with that success is their desire to run a tidy and efficient business at their base Coneycroft Farm, nestled in the rolling countryside south-west of Guildford.
Their Avant machinery plays a major part in the smooth running of the yard and Kevin is especially a huge fan.
“The Avant is just fantastic and makes life so much easier. The machines are incredibly user-friendly and adaptable thanks to the many attachments available.”
[/vc_column_text][vc_separator][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner][vc_column_text]Avant manufactures a wide range of compact, 4-wheel drive machines, which can be fitted with a very comprehensive range of accessories to meet the many varied requirements to make yard work and general maintenance jobs easy and less labour intensive. For further information visit www.avant.co.uk[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row]