Matt’s Diary – Week 12


Young Mum promised me a hack this morning and I was really looking forwards to it. I worked so hard practising my dressage tests but she decided that it was still too dark at 8am so we spent longer in the school and only did a little hack round the block. I was quite disappointed. But better safe than sorry I guess. Even with her fluorescent coat on… 

The rest of the day was spent in the field practising my tests in my head. To my surprise she didn’t groom me when we came in for bed.


Now I understand why she didn’t groom me! Because at sunrise today Young Mum turned me out with my breakfast. Obviously I had a quick roll after eating. But it wasn’t long before she and The Chauffeur poo picked and brought me in. Before I could start fidgeting and being a pain my boots were fastened and we were at the trailer. I marched on. I was ready! All these weeks of preparation. It was my moment!

We arrived at the same place as last time, but the warm up was very soggy so I did my best to get in the zone and stop trying to find my friends.

I confidently marched down to the nice big arena we used last time where I could study my reflection and see how handsome I am. To my horror I was redirected to a large outdoor arena. I wasn’t expecting this! Caught off guard, I hadn’t gotten my bearings before the bell went and I was heading down the centre line.

I’m ashamed to say, that it wasn’t my best performance. I had to neigh a comfort to a youngster being lunged in the distance. And as I was about to go across the diagonal for my speciality – medium trot – I realised Old Mum was there. Where did she come from? Distracted, I wobbled into canter.

I was really ashamed and felt bad for Young Mum. I thought I’d try harder in the second test. But they loaded me back onto the trailer. Well, tried to. I put my hoof down – I thought there were two Novice tests!

Back home I was thrown into the field to commiserate with Otis. Barely two hours later, when I had just enjoyed a thorough roll, Young Mum and Old Mum came back! I stood still, perplexed at the repeat of this morning whilst they cleaned me up and put on my boots. Still waiting for an explanation, I took a while to load. Perhaps I was being sent home in disgrace?

We turned up at the big posh competition again, and Young Mum soon mounted to go to the warm up. I groaned – that was a large roast dinner she’d had! This time the warm up was full of Valegro wannabes, turning their noses up at me. So I pinged around in medium trot to show off. That’ll teach them!

This time my test was in the luxurious indoor, complete with my reflection and a photographer. I tried my hardest and apart from a slight gawp at the next horse coming down I concentrated really really hard. Young Mum was pleased, she gave me a big pat as we left the arena. 

I loaded immediately, I was ready for bed after all this excitement! Young Mum told me later I’d scored 66.9%. The judge was hard to please, and we were fifth. Less than 1% behind the winner. With that news, I swaggered over to Otis to tell him. I was a challenge to the big boys now!


It was early this morning when both Mums arrived. I expected a day off, but Old Mum insisted on lunging me. She was better than last week, so hopefully she can remember it all when I go home in January. She turned me out and did my stable, as well as poo pick my field because Young Mum had to go and learn how to save lives. I’m glad Old Mum is learning the ropes, I have high standards now!

The Chauffeur brought us in this evening and Young Mum was pleased to know that we’d behaved ourselves for him.


Finally, today was my day off to recover from my dressage. Young Mum has been battling the darkness recently, so Otis and I stayed out until dark. We didn’t even get our mud packs brushed off our faces, but at least we had perfectly level beds! I let her off though, riding seven horses in one day is pretty tough on the legs and tummy muscles.


Another day off for me. I think this is my Christmas holiday come early. Young Mum turned us out early, but was back quite early to bring us in because she still had to teach two kids and ride a horse – all after our bedtime! She’s regretting taking my hood off now. I however, think it is perfectly pleasant being able to rub mud up under my rug and embed it into my eyelashes and nose.


Today Otis and I got so fed up of not having our face masks cleaned off we tried to tidy ourselves up a bit. Perhaps if grooming us doesnt look like such a huge, arduous task she’ll do it?! 

Unfortunately for us The Chauffeur brought us in because Young Mum was so busy fighting the darkness. Otis thought about being naughty, but I reminded him of his bad leg and the Vet Visit next week.


It seemed to be back to normality today; Young Mum lunged be before breakfast. I showed her my best canter work, but couldn’t spook and show off my prancing trot because it was still dark! 

Then this afternoon she tied us both outside my stable, took our rugs off and let us groom each other while she did the bits we couldn’t reach. Otis kept insisting I scratched his right side, but I wanted my left side scratched so after a couple of asks he turned his bum to me and sulked. I thought we both looked pretty smart afterwards.


It was really foggy this morning so Young Mum couldn’t hack me. Tomorrow afternoon, apparently. But we did some jumping. 

I loved it! I made sure I picked my feet up over the scary yellow things in the middle. I was just getting into my stride when the yard came to life. All I could hear were voices and hoof falls. So I pretended to be Valegro, passaging around; giving a loud, dragon-like snort for full effect. Unfortunately, the fog hid the large puffs of smoke that spirals out my nostrils when I snort, somewhat reducing the effect.

We had to come in early today because Young Mum had to take the cat to the vets for her jab, but I didn’t mind because there was extra hay in my net.

Matt’s Diary – Week 9


You may remember Young Mum assaulted me yesterday and scalped me – how barbaric! It was then the coldest night of the century. You’ll be glad to know that I survived in my hood and two heavy weight rugs.

Anyway, this frosty morning Young Mum took me for a hack at the crack of dawn. It was very exciting, cantering along an avenue of oaks in my designer exercise sheet! When we got back she got off and went to see Otis. Then got on me again. She thought I was going to go out again with Otis.

She was very much mistaken. I wanted some breakfast! I told her no, but Otis persuaded me to accompany them, so I did.

The Chauffeur did the evening duties today, commenting to me how level our beds were. He asked if Young Mum had a spirit level!


As is usual, The Chauffeur was on duty this morning. He did the usual jobs and Young Mum rocked up in the afternoon to bring us into our beds which definitely hadn’t seen the spirit level …

It was nice to have a day off, but my neighbour told me that a storm was coming.


Today was storm day, and it had rained all night. Unfortunately for me it wasn’t raining when Young Mum arrived so she lunged me. Cantering is still tricky with the Pessoa hitting me up the bum all the time. But I’m stretching better now, according to Young Mum.

Have I told you about the climbing cat? Otis warned me about her – she sits on Young Mum’s shoulders and sometimes tries to sit on horses! I’ve made sure my rug stays on when she’s in sight! Anyway, she leapt up on my stable door as I was being tacked up. So I jumped. And the cat fell off backwards. Quite funny really, I thought they were supposed to be good at climbing! However, the stupid cat closed the kick bolt, locking us in the stable. No humans were around so Young Mum had to vault over the door. All I can say is, it’s a good job she’s young!

Thankfully it wasn’t too heavy rain because Young Mum turned us out because I wanted to go out, and we were supposed to come in at lunchtime but they forgot us! So good job it was dry-ish after lunch!

We both had a nice groom when we came in, but Young Mum did complain about my muddy eyelashes. I told her it was good for my complexion and that she should try it.


Tuesday’s are no longer my day of rest! We were unceremoniously turfed out of our beds at the crack of dawn. 

In the afternoon we were dragged in, the tack thrown on me, and then I went to the arena for a dressage lesson! What on earth?! Medium trot, collected trot, medium canter, 10m figures of eights, counter canter, the list was endless. But no sideways stuff today – phew! 

Then afterwards I had to quickly escort Otis around the block before night fell.


I thought I deserved a break this morning after my work out a mere half day previously. But no! Jumping today after some silly sideways stuff. I did the bounce beautifully apparently, and then the two Shetland sized strides to the upright. I managed, but only because I’m amazingly agile.

When we went back to the barn I knew what to expect. I didn’t expect though, for Young Mum to be so lazy as to not get off me to get Otis out of his stable. Instead she put his headcollar on and opened the door from the saddle. I bet she wished the cat was around to help with the kickbolt then!


Young Mum overslept today so it was a quick lunge session, but she made me canter! However, I did it brilliantly, to her amazement so hopefully she’ll let me off it next time!

In the afternoon she attacked my legs again, to work on blending the clip line into my leg fluff. The dog groomer lady said it wasn’t a bad job, but she wouldn’t let Young Mum loose on her dogs yet! I rolled my eyes. Why was she loose on me then?!


Fresh bedding for us today, but Young Mum ran out of time so it wasn’t perfectly horizontal. The Chauffeur had better buck his ideas up for the weekend as I’ve heard he’s in charge and I can’t have an unlevel bed two days in a row. 

I escorted Otis on his walk this afternoon and then practiced a dressage test until it was too dark to see even Young Mum’s bright orange coat. I worked hard, knowing I have two whole days to recover!

Matt’s Diary – Week 5


For a weekend, Young Mum was up early and lunging me into the ground. I can now canter with the weird Pessoa-bum-hitting thing. It’s easy when you know how! Young Mum says I’ve put on weight because Otis’s girth now fits me… I disagree. It’s all these tummy muscles I’ve now got. But I was pleased to hear that she’s bought me my very own Pessoa so I can show off to Old Mum when I go home.


The Chauffeur fed me this morning and did a very good job of cleaning my field. I am impressed that he feels the need to clean it twice a day. I mean, Otis gets his stable done twice a day so I should too really. Maybe I’ll ask Young Mum…

This afternoon she took me for a hack. I wasn’t very impressed that she had deserted me in the morning and then expected me to work hard in the afternoon! So I cantered away from her in the field. We did have a nice hack though. Not enough open fields for my liking though.



We had an early morning dressage session this morning, learning my tests in the dark. I’m feeling pretty confident about them now. At least, I know where I’m going.


Today was my day off and Young Mum quickly fed me because she had lots of other horses to ride. She didn’t even poo pick my field!

I assumed she would do it this afternoon, when she served dinner. And she did. In a fashion. However, I’m convinced I did more than five droppings since Sunday and she definitely missed the top corner of my paddock. I made a note to complain to The Chauffeur when I see him on the weekend. He’ll sort it out.


More dressage practice today, and a quick jump at the end. Apparently we’re going to a hunter trial on Saturday. Good! I was led to believe there would be more jumping at this boot camp, and less of this dancing malarkey.

To make matters worse, Young Mum put this hood on me. Apparently it’s to keep my mane flat, so the dressage judge doesn’t think I have a swan neck. How embarrassing! I hope the horses back in Wales don’t hear about this, I’ll be a laughing stock!


This morning it was my dressage lesson. Thankfully we didn’t do that silly sideways stuff, but practiced the dressage tests.  I definitely know the novice one now. We did it once to find out Young Mum`s weaknesses. Then we videoed it. Apparently we`re entering e-dressage too this month. The test was going so well. I felt amazing, if I do say so myself. And then the quad bike was started up right behind me, so I ran away. Young Mum has good Velcro though, so she just pulled me up and we restarted the test. I was a bit on edge now, I could hear that quad bike. We finished the test this time, but I had a little blip in the middle when cantering towards the quad bike, and then when it revved behind me I got scared again, so ran off in the canter a little bit. Young Mum put the video on YouTube though, so my fans can see me in action. What do you think?


Young Mum told me to get lots of rest today, ready for our busy weekend. So I did. I still have to wear this ridiculous hood though. Today was another super quick poo picking. I don’t know, I shall have to lodge a formal complaint tomorrow to The Chauffeur. This afternoon Young Mum brought my into my stable for dinner. There was a full bucket of water and two haynets, so I assume I` staying in for the night. This will be a nice change. Otis told me that there are fireworks tonight, and the best thing is to watch them from my stable. I don’t know what fireworks are, so I`ll tell you about next time!