It will be a second visit to Badminton for British rider Dani Evans. Based near Bristol, 24 year old Dani has been a member of British Junior and Young Rider teams and is bringing two horses to the world’s most famous three day event – Raphael II, owned by Vanessa Watson, and Smart Time, owned by Luana Edge. Eventing Worldwide had a quick catch up with this talented young rider on the eve of the competition.
How has your pre-Badminton preparation gone with the two horses you are riding this year?
Preparations have not been perfect but I’m still going with positives vibes. I took both Raphael and Smart Time to Fontainebleau and then they missed a run at Belton due to the weather. They are fit and well despite not running at Belton. I have managed to get them both out show jumping locally.
What are your thoughts on this year’s course?
I don’t know as I haven’t seen it! I try not to look at the online video so I don’t have any preconceived ideas. When I walk the course on Wednesday after the riders briefing, I will then get to see the track as the horses will see it on Saturday. I will walk the course at least three times, but more than likely four times. The final walk I will do by myself so I can walk the lines I intend to ride. I will walk with the owners once and more than likely with Yogi Briesner once.
Have you set yourself any goals for Badminton?
To finish with two sound horses, having done a personal best in their tests, jumping double clears and all being well in the top 20 on Sunday. Then I’ll be delighted.
Are you more or less nervous coming back to Badminton for the second time?
I want to get past fence 5!
It where all riders want to ride, me included!
What are your overall aims for 2015?