Pretoria Show

So last week was a busy week but I have to just say how proud I am of all our horsies! Again we came in ahead of a number of imported horses with our locally bred talent which pleases me greatly! The two days at the show was however an emotionally driven and stress filled few hours, and had it not been for the presence of Lida, who on more than one occasion took me by the shoulders shaking me and saying ‘Get it together man’ I would very possibly run screaming for the hills!

Our results:

Bakkies van Doorndraai – 1st Stallion over 3 but under 5 (Photo bottom)

Bart van Doorndraai – 1st Star Stallion over 3 but under 5 & Supreme Champion Stallion In-Hand (Photo top)

Pandora van Doorndraai – 1st Voorlopige Kroon Mare & Reserve Champion Mare In-Hand

Alma van Doorndraai – 2nd Star Mares over 3 but under 5

Tjalf 443 ‘Sport’ – Champion Studbook Stallion Single Harness, Driven by Nynke Bosma

Friso fan S. – Champion FPS Stallion with Breeding Permission Single Harness, Driven by Nynke Bosma

After a few good results and a Vawter at the News Cafe my blood pressure also seemed to settle down a bit and the day ended with the first proper thunder shower of summer.  Realising the blackness on the horizon did not bode well for showing horses we decided to bring everybody back to the farm and it turned out to be a race against time which we just won, staying ahead of the hailstorm all the way home.  Blackness fell on the Pretoria afternoon and that was also the end of the show.  At least we got a few good results and I managed not to pull all my hair out and only have one horse stand on my foot.

I just want to say thank you to Alida, Nynke, Theus and all our Doorndraai grooms who made the day so great! At the next show I will hopefully be riding Delilah not embarrassing myself too much! Watch this space!


Back in the Saddle – Coming Home


Working for one of the biggest and best Friesian Studs in the country I have been asked many times ‘So why don’t you ride?’ I always greeted this question with the same answer. ‘I don’t ride things that can think for themselves…’  I however woke up one day and decided that after eighteen years I would get back in the saddle.  I was worried about  few things though.

1. Getting on.  This seems easy enough but lifting your leg that high to get into the stirrup is actually a lot harder than anticipated.  You can use a bucket or something else to stand on but as I’ve been told if you ‘moer’ off on a outride you won’t have a bucket to help you get back on and Then What… The first few times I think everybody that was watching burst out laughing despite me threatening to kill them with fire if they did but I seem to have gotten the hang of it.  I have in the mean time even jumped on Theuns B’s back with no saddle (photo top) which has been the most fun!

2.  Wrapping myself around a pole or crashing into a wall, this has happened this week but luckily not to me… And even seeing my good friend and instructor Nynke tearing her calf muscle in two very separate pieces has not put me off.

3. Wearing riding pants.  After wearing lycra for many years as a cyclist putting on riding pants shouldn’t be that scary but it was… Riding pants also seem to come up all the way to under your armpits which I never understood untill I tried getting on (see nr 1).  If you lift your leg up that high hipster pants won’t work and everybody at the yard will see your ass…

These few points however have not deterred me and the highlight of my day now involves riding a young mare Delilah of Millford that I am helping to put under saddle and gelding Theuns B.  Two very different horses but one very similar invatuation.  In the words of my good friend and horse guru Alida (photo bottom on Friso fan S.) “Riding again after many years is like coming home”