In our second show review of the indoor season, Marcus Ehning’s head girl Kay Neatham speaks about the German Classics and her weekend in Hannover – and we think Kay was not alone when she says she was smiling from the moment she arrived.
"Before we were going to Hannover I was in two minds if I really wanted to go with; some shows seem to always have very demanding schedules – for example sometimes the last horse that jumps at night is then the first horse in the early morning to jump again, leaving no time for horse or groom to get a rest. The shows often lack in the personal touch, it feels sometimes that people want to put a show on with minimal effort. For me as a groom, a show is great when my horses have the best possible chance to perform well. What is the point of putting the rider in a 5 star hotel, when he's partner is standing in a cramped and sometimes wet, damp conditions. Where the answer to any special needs for a particular horse, i.e. stallions, is 'we can't help' or ‘what do you do at other shows’ etc. Happy people make happy horses…
From the moment I arrived in Hannover I was smiling. The security people at the messe were polite and trying their best to get all the trucks in and out fast to unload. I was very pleased to have people with tractors bringing my shavings etc, so I was able to get the horses beds down fast. Also having my equipment taken to the stable, and being asked if I needed help with anything was fantastic!
The stabling is super even though it’s in a garage; the boxes are well spread out with large isles and it is very quiet for the horses. And it was a place for all the freezers! For me the water was very close, but I hope I'm right in saying it was not too bad for anyone.
Hannover is also a superb facility for the horses as there is plenty of space to handwalk or hackwalk around the messe, in the open air. Also the second warm-up is quiet and open all day for riding and longing. This makes life as a groom so much easier as we can plan getting our horses out during a normal working day, if such a thing exists for us.
The schedule was very well done which just makes everything easier. There was no late class and then the first morning class, and no first class in the morning and then nothing all day except the last late class... We even had time to eat the very good food provided for us.
For the sport the atmosphere is always exciting in Hannover with a pleasant homely feeling!
I asked if I could say something about this show because in my opinion it’s not often that competitions that have been around for years are looking to improve these days.
Hannover - thank you for a superb weekend for horses and grooms!"
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