Three-time Paralympian Philippa Johnson has managed to cram two competitions into one weekend as the European equestrian season gathers pace, writes Mark Etheridge.
“Not only was I able to compete Lord Louis in the CPEDI 3* but they also had a CDN on at the same time so Verdi could also have an outing,” she told Road to Rio 2016.
“Starting with the CPEDI3*, in the team test Louis had one very big mistake which was actually my fault but after that gave me a lovely ride although the mistake did cost us and we finished fifth with 68.55%.
“The next day was cold and windy and the wind unfortunately went straight up Louis’ tail which made for some interesting riding. Again the naughtiness cost us and we were sixth in the Ind Championships with 67.5%. There were 19 horses in the Grade IV and only the top seven went through to the freestyle. We made the cut which was great.
“If I thought he behaved badly in the Championships, he threw all his toys in the Freestyle making him completely unrideable. This meant we finished seventh with 63.1%”, reflected Johnson.
“The good thing is that he is getting better and the judges do want to give him the marks ÔÇô with him scoring his first ever 9’s when he was behaving!!
“As for my darling trustworthy Verdi, he did a wonderful test in the Int 1 with one big mistake in the three time changes but again that was all my fault. Unfortunately the judges were not into giving points that day and we finished fourth with 63.55% with the horse that won only scoring 66%.”