Aske Hall Horse Trials


Aske Hall Horse Trial

   Up the A1 again to Aske in North Yorkshire, fair bit further than my last outing at Arena UK, but the the drive was only about 3 hours and that was including a breakfast break at Maccy D's.  I arrived at the gates to Aske Hall just outside of Richmond about 10.30.  After about a quarter mile journey up the drive I arrived at the Marquee which was pitched across from the show jumping ring, there I met Michelle Clough one of the organisers, as Tracey wasn't going to get to Aske for another hour Michelle asked me to do a couple of jobs to help out which I was happy to do.  As I was helping out in the Marquee I met Pete Hurley, the organiser of Aske,  who showed me the artic trailer that the show jumps were on, Iasked how we were going to get the jumps the 50 yards across to the arena, and his reply was the question, do you know how to drive a Manitou.  It was about 15 years since I sat in a Manitou but was willing to give it a go.



The Build

   I walked off down to the bottom of the field to collect the tractor to unload the jumps, by that time Tracey had arrived and I unloaded the metal frame containing the poles in to the middle of a very undulating arena.  Tracey  placed the poles on the ground where she wanted fences to go make sure she took in to consideration the slopes and what type of fence she wanted to build there.  After a while we had quite a few willing volunteers and the job was done, just the small job of arranging the flowers around the jumps and we could relax until the morning.


First Day

   Pete kindly invited Tracey and myself down to West Gilling to the pub to eat on the friday night which was very enjoyable, a posh burger and a couple of beers later and I was ready for a nights sleep in my tent.  Although it rained over night, I had quite a good nights sleep.In the morning the first horse was in to jump around the course at 08.40.  Most horses in the competition seem to be struggling with the conditions of the undulating ground although the going was good, but I think in this day and age even in eventing alot of people practice on a sand surface, so for me it wasn't an event where you would step up a grade with your horse.






   Later on the saturday afternoon I slipped off to Northallerton train station to pick up my girlfriend Caroline, by the time we got back there were only a few horses on the xc course and the showjumping was fiinished for theday.  I introduced Caroline to everybody and again we were kindly invited to eat with the organisrers.  It was a similiar start time to the competition on the sunday with slightly better weather ( no rain showers), the competitors were still finding the ground difficult to operate on, and there were few clear rounds.But I think most people went away happy.

   The organisers of Aske really made me feel very welcome and appreciated all through the weekend and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and we are looking forward to going back in september for their second event.


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