10 June 2011

Our Newest Contributor -- The UK's Tori Trafford!

Tori Trafford and TINA'S MAGIC  at Chatsworth (Photo © 2011 by Tim Wilkinson Photography)
Eventing Day is so very pleased to announce a new contributor --   Tori Trafford!  Tori has generously agreed to submit posts from her home base in Leicestershire UK.  We are very excited to offer insights and updates from the very heart of the sport -- Great Britain.   Many thanks Tori and welcome to Eventing Day! And a special thanks to the UK's Tim Wilkinson of Tim Wilkinson Photography! ~ ed
Hello my name is Victoria Trafford – but otherwise known as Tori. I’m an event rider based in the UK, Leicestershire (very much the middle in fact there is a cross 3 miles down the road that factually says this is the middle of the UK).

This is my blog, my generally once a month ramblings of how I’m getting on here with my horses in the world of Eventing.

I currently have three and a half horses (I’ll get back to this) two which are in full time competition one at Pre-Novice Level and one at Novice/One star level.

Tina’s Magic aka Tina is the top gun in the yard, she is an ex-racehorse who we purchased of a lady named Geraldine Reeves – she’s a well-known figure here in the racing world she was the first lady to complete the Grand National. Tina is a 8 year old chestnut mare by the illustrious Primitive Rising sire of many a great eventer such as William Fox-Pitts - Cool Mountain (silver WEG and won Kentucky last year) and Mary King’s - Kings Temptress (won Kentucky this year) so hopefully I’m on to a winner here.

We competed at Chatsworth International in the Novice event here and all I can say is how inspiring it was to watch the World Cup riders in the dressage on the Saturday they make it look so easy. We had a brilliant day a good dressage (despite the howling rain and wind) and only three down in the Showjumping. I was so proud of her as we’ve never been anywhere that had flags, grandstands, sponsor tents, 6,000 spectators, umbrellas, dogs and everything in between so her concentration to begin with was everywhere hence the three down (which were the first three fences). The cross country was amazing despite my rookie error at the skinnys which cost us (we would have been in the top 20 if I hadn’t have done that) but always a lesson learnt. The course is by Ian Stark a well-known gentlemen in the eventing world – I even think he himself took a horse around one of the courses (could have been the CIC***).

My next event with Tina which will be in the next blog is Great Tew 11th June (PN – will explain in next blog) and then Catton Park 18th June (N).

That’s The Way aka Natalie is my youngster she is a ¾ Thoroughbred ¼ Hanoverian so a good mix to be an eventer. She is also a chestnut mare by a stallion called Nomadic Way he is a good hurdler here in the UK and won many a race. She started off fairly slowly she has a young mind for a 5 year old and needs a lot of coaching at the minute I’m doing unaffiliated Dressage and Showjumping with her to get used to the sights and sounds. We have a plan set up for her to start eventing in the summer as she contested the 4 year old classes last year and don’t want to rush her too much and want to get it right but she is coming together nicely and is growing in maturity every time we go out. (I keep mentally telling myself!).

Great Future aka Ginny (and this is where the half comes in) will be an eventer next year but this year she has had a bay filly called Rosalea I call her Rosie for short and we haven’t decided a posh name for her yet (currently playing around with names). She is yet another chestnut mare by a racing stallion called Fantastic Light (he currently stands in Darley Stud in Japan and his stud fee is astronomical) she is only 5 years old and I did some schooling with her as a 4 year old and she was amazing to jump! She was a hurdler and raced on the flat but evidently wasn’t quick enough then they decided to breed form her and then changed their mind and wanted to sell her I got a phone call out of the blue and then and there I had a mare who was due to pop in 3 days. Luckily I’ve had two seasons on a stud yard plus my mum breeds horses so I did sort of know what I was doing but it was the worst two weeks night sleep as she decided to go over her due date.

And that’s me in a sort of nutshell – hopefully now when I speak about the horses you will have a brief description of who I’m talking about and next time be a bit more on how the competitions go on over here.

In my next blog there will be a rundown of Great Tew and Catton Park with Tina and Natalie at Eland Lodge and Vale View on how she did Showjumping.

You can also follow me on twitter - twitter.com/traffordeventing

 Or facebook – facebook.com/TraffordEventing – for regular updates. 

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