An invite to Epworth Equestrian and the Hunter Trails..October 2013

Rhiannee sent me a text last week asking me to come along to Epworth Equestrian on Sunday, they were holding a Hunter Trial event and she asked if I would take some photos of her and the boy Ruben, I said yes Id love to. So that explains why there are more than one or two of her today!

It was a really windy day, it was prior to the forthcoming fierce winds that were eventually to rip through southern England during Sunday night. The wind though helped to dry out the soggy ground, the sun was out and the sky was really blue, the temperature was really mild too. All in all it was a beautiful October’s day. Julie fancied lunging her boy home in the field, she predicted a wet soggy week so was going to take advantage of the nice day. Lightening is not brilliant at jumping…entertaining yes but not brilliant!

I arrived around 10.00hrs and went straight to the food hut for a burger and a quick natter with the ace cook before taking a wander around the many horse boxes and trailers watching everybody getting ready.

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                                            Warming up before the off.

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       I just loved this little one with the hearts.. no fear whatsover

I was surprised just how many were here today. Youngsters, young ladies some gentlemen (not many mind) and a dozens of grown ups, all here to compete and have fun. They would be arriving and leaving all day, the pony’s and horse had allocated start times.

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                        The sun shone brightly on the early competitiors

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                            I didnt plan this….it just happened and I love it!!

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 These guys were doing a pose for a group of friends stood nearby with camera phones and I took the opportunity to capture a fun photo.

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                                                        Jumping the last fence!

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I hardly knew anyone riding but this didnt detract from such a fun day

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A pairs team have a practice in the warm up ring. Beautiful colours!

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                                 A lot of girls looked their best in pink today

Rhiannee arrived on Ruben he only lives ten minutes down the lane so comes under his own steam. Elaine (Mum) drops Rhiannee off at the stable and drove across here with the team coffee and snacks. She asked me to go to the little hill with the barrels and take some photos of her jumping up a little hill? well its the only hill in miles so shouldnt be hard to find if I set off now. Rhiannee was due to set off in about twenty minutes. This was going to be a breeze…pardon the pun!

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           Finally my subject and friend arrived..say Hi to Rhiannee!

I rounded the hedge line to see a bit of a commotion and a loose horse at one of the fences. A lady had fallen off and was lying on her back, her pairs partner was circling concerned, someone had the loose horse now and a marshal with a radio was calling for assistance, I was walking down the field when from behind came the ambulance so she was in good hands quite quickly. The marshal told me later on that she had an immediate headache and her neck hurt and she had some blood coming out of her nose, it looked like she had fallen after the jump, I’m guessing she fell on her head banging her nose? hopefully someone will post on here soon and offer an update on her. She was put on a stretcher and took to hospital.

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                                         Help was at hand within minutes

The show had to pause until ambulance crew returned, it’s not a huge event you see and was covered by just the one crew. I was now on the only hill for miles and was getting battered by the wind….I was there for ages, I didn’t go back just in case they started again and I missed Rihannee! Newly arrived riders walked the course prior to their turn and giggled at me sheltering behind the barrels wrapped tightly in my windproof (not) jacket. The things I do!…. the marshal came over for a chat when over his radio came the news that we would be starting again in a few minutes, he said “Bye” and returned to his position, I got up off the floor and practiced some positions of where I might shoot from, I wanted to get it right because I would see her at this one jump. I’m not as quick as an oss and can hardly say to her “Just potter about a bit until I run to the next fence” can I?

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 The growing wind was threatening to rip of their silk hat covers!

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                                                 A shot taken into the sun

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                                                   Enjoying her day so much!

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The wind was blowing me about quite a bit into top of the little hill so I put the shutter speed upto to 1/400 sec to try and steady the camera shake and capture the flowing locks of both horse and rider…

Several riders came on before her and I practiced taking photos of them on the hill over the barrels and took a few cheeky shots into the sun, totally against old photography doctrine whilst all the time keeping my eye out for my girl in stripes.  

When she came on I put the camera on rapid fire and got lots of photos as she approached and jumped the fence at the foot of the hill then galloped up and over the barrels and passed by into the sun round the lake disapearing in the distance. I got my stiff legs moving and made my way back to Elaine and the hot coffee.

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                                     Here comes Ruben and Rhiannee!!

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                                    Trying her best to ignore the camera!!

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      And….there she goes, around the pond and off into the distance

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                                                         Pleased with her clear run

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                               Rhiannee passes on her love and thanks to Ruben

We hung around for a bit after she had finished but because of the earlier incident everything had been put back by a least an hour, they said they would put the results on the website by the evening.

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                                 Niamh warms up in the practice ring

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                                                                     Molly

I took a few photos of other riders getting warmed up before leaving for home. About half a mile down the lane I came across Rhiannee as she and Ruben were making their way back to the stables nearby. I pulled up ahead of them and took a few more photo’s as they ambled down the leafy part of the lane.

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                                                        Ruben takes Rhiannee home.

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And finally, this is the other Ruben and the reason why Ruben was entered as Patch de Patch for todays event

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