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The Tuesday WoSJ guest blogger from the World Equestrian Games; Kay Neatham

Tuesday, 02 September 2014

Hi everybody,

As every day it began with an alarm clock going off, today it was 5.40am – I let it snooze once and got myself out of bed. Deodorant tick, red t shirt tick; not to forget it has to be the one with 'Fendt' on the right side – everyone is part of the team and has a dress code to follow. Three German arm bands – tick. One was from Bertram's groom for luck, one from the team – all the other German teams wore them also. Otto said they're lucky, the other I brought for this week in Aachen. Hair, rest of my clothes – tick, pass – tick, jacket – tick. 5.55 off to work... Thinking through my plan for the morning in my head.

Caro from Christian is first to go, so she was already hard at work and had given all the horses a little hay. Our team vet arrived to jog the horses and Cornado got his breakfast. Corny was happy to see me (or his breakfast)! Bandages off, legs all good as always – tick, mucked out 'shit' looked normal – tick, drunk a good amount of water – tick, blankets off body normal.. Yep if we want to start today everything needs to be as it always is – tick – because yes it's a list in my head to check and now I am relaxing.

I had booked the lunge arena for 20 mins at 7.05. Made our way there Corny was as always very keen to get to work and start the day – tick – all normal. He longed super; loose, fresh but relaxed. Back to the box a little hay and yes the world is ok again I have a coffee in my hand.

Everyone is here now and we are all pretty focused on our own things. Otto was so focused he walked over and asked very seriously 'Plotty slept good?' I thought at first he was trying to make me happy, as Plotty was top fit but Cornado was the right choice to bring here. Then he shook his head and said 'Now I'm going crazy, I mean Cornado!' Otto was ist los!

8.30am: Marcus came to ride Corny. They both looked happy and relaxed in their morning work. Marcus was pleased and that is the main thing. ...Corny a little more hay, pee, drink water – all ticks. Read a book for 20 mins, more coffee and give Corny some peace.

9.20 start plaiting, I put the German colours in his forelock for luck. 19 plaits plus the forelock makes an even number lucky. 4+3=7 which is the big boss from NRW stud farms lucky number... Corny's start number today is 43. I have a lucky charm from Marcus's kids sewn in the martingale.. We also all sewed a little piece of the German colours on the top of the fly fringes for team luck!!!! I mean what can go wrong, but at least everyone feels they are helping! The more luck the merrier!

Tack up – tick.. No tick for the fact that we had to make the straps on the front of our horses jumping boots black yesterday, with permanent marker (too much private advertising not allowed) and I made two right ones, just a little faster heart beat as I did quickly a left one while pretending to Marcus nothing was wrong!!!

Off we go, Christian had started super so bring it on world here come the Germans!!! Clear and not crazy but enough.. That weight on my shoulders fell off and I was relieved to have the first day behind me.

We are a great team, we all help each other and stick together. This helps a lot as this championship stuff is not as easy as it looks. The mental game is everything. Fun is something else and we are all signed up for a team come what may...

On another note the stabling is great, these boxes that we had at the Olympics in London also, are for sure the best on the market/circuit at the moment. Water is right by each isle. The stewards are doing a superb job to make everything run to the rules, in a good working conditions. The wash boxes have warm water and the stable helpers bring the straw/shavings or hay that we order. Food was busy today but is enjoyable with choice of menus. Sleeping in my own bed in my own truck is of course a bonus!

As I write this sitting on a stool, leaning on Corny's box, he is hanging his head out and just staying close to me – my buddy and me. Good luck for everyone in the next days... Great things will happen and crazy things... It's a championship!!!

Best wishes

Kay

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