The RDS (Royal Dublin Society) Horse Show invited the Side Saddle Association to put on a display at their annual show to be held in August 2012. I immediately signed up to take part in the display as I had ALWAYS wanted to ride at the Dublin Horse Show, but seeing as I never competed in anything as a child and only at a very low level as an adult in the riding club, I had never had the opportunity before. We had to attend two training days, one in Tipperary and one in Wicklow. There were quite a few riders taking part and we learned a lot during the training!
Horse show week arrived, I travelled to Dublin with Tex and my new side saddle friends Verity and Emily and their horses SueEllen and Duke 🙂 Having never ridden at Dublin before, I couldn’t believe the rigmarole when it came to dropping off horses, unloading gear, locking tack boxes, trying to find parking…!
We had a 5am start on the morning of Ladies Day, as we had to be mounted for a full practice in ring 3 (the sand arena) for 6am! I maintain that I always ride better when I have the habit and all the other formal gear on…
To be allowed to take part in the display at such a prestigious show was a huge honour and we were turned out immaculately- as Verity, Emily, Sarah and I left the stables to ride down to the practice ring at 1:30, people stopped, stared and smiled!
Our display was held at 2pm on the grass in ring 2. I was paired with Emily and Duke, we walked, trotted and cantered around the arena while a commentary was read out.
I was still smiling a week later, Tex went very well for me and I think she enjoyed all the attention too! Extra carrots for supper that evening. I was delighted to have fit into my size 8 habit, the only reason for that was that I was on a strict wedding dress diet, I got married the following week 😀