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  • Lisa Marshall

Time to get myself back out there… Baby steps...

I have retrieved my comp gear from the hanger and polished my boots to take the reins of young Donald for a little while.

Matilda has been doing a cracking job with him and getting great results. Donald has just proven that he can still come out and throw some shapes and be sharp as stink 😬 He is a difficult one to read and ride, so I thought I'd swallow my worries of others' opinions (which I ask the girls to do all of the time (it's just something I've struggled with my whole competing career no matter which discipline)). So, putting my main worries and concerns to the back of my mind and having to deal with Matilda's nerves (which are now more so with me being on board than her), I have booked myself in for a little class for him to come to terms with himself and his worries. He is a very challenging little sausage as he has such extravagant movement with a wonderful pace, along with the feel that he's about to internally and externally explode which just makes you ride a little defensively. All of this and the explosion pending we arrive at our little competition. He comes off the lorry quite a bit taller than he went on 😁 We get him looking as beautiful as he can do and get him dressed ready for his party.

So... the mount is one of his challenging parts and something we've been working on so much and he is becoming far less worried. (Matilda not so)! I get my leg up, I'm on and he's not too bad, so we get him moving quite swiftly and he's starting to relax a little more. We get to the warm up and I don't actually ask too much from him, just ask for as much focus and acceptance as possible. He's done pretty good... I'm doing ok - ish 😜

We head down for our class, in we go, and he's become a little like a tank (clearly where my thought process and energy has changed) so I try and tell myself this is a little schooling session and what will be will be.

Bell rings and we're off!! Ooo.. CL seems not too bad and we're in a pretty good rhythm. We have a pretty good test so far, a little loss of balance in areas but we manage the 4mins, back down the CL for our halt. Oh, and I breath 🤣I must have forgotten that along the way!!

So blooming proud of us both!! I stayed on board and didn't pass out, although VERY hot & exhausted (wow! I need to get fitter). He was a good boy and tolerated me on board and we both came out relieved it was over 🤣

We did get some pretty pics and a lovely score sheet, picking up on the areas I knew we'd lacked balance - we still managed to do a pretty good job and managed a first place with 67.39%

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