It’s been full steam ahead in the past few weeks in the run up to BEF Futurity grading for the foals and
some of the youngstock which is taking place at Hartpury on 9th August. We are taking all three of the mares and foals we have this year as well as 2 year old mare Parkfield Distinctive – it is sure to be an action packed day!
In order to prepare for the day we have had to keep a close eye on the feeding of the mares and foals. We happen to have 3 very different broodmares – one that could live off thin air, one that is very active and we have to feed very carefully to maintain her condition, and one that is in-between. This makes for lots of moving around of fields and splitting mares up in order to feed them correctly. We are lucky enough to be supported by Keyflow who’s feeds are top quality and really do keep the horses in top condition with their coats gleaming, so we have been carefully monitoring the mares’ intake of feed to keep them looking great in the run up to futurity grading.
In between playing musical paddocks, we have also been teaching the foals to lead properly – something that some have taken to better than others! Now the foals have grown much bigger and have developed serious personalities, we have experienced many challenges along the way! Parkfield Little Phoenix, full sister to Parkfield Quintessential, has been impeccably behaved all along, very easily taking to leading and not putting a hoof out of line. Parkfield Vicarage Vee however, has become increasingly adventurous and opinionated and thinks everything in life is for his amusement. He has been running circles around us but we think we have finally nailed the leading – we hope! Parkfield Folies Bergere, who was extremely shy when she was born, has developed a huge personality and attitude, and given she is the tallest of the three foals, she has been a handful! Fingers crossed they all remember what we have taught them on the day!
Parkfield Distinctive (aka Dizzy) one of our 2yr old mares is also going to be graded, but as she is 2 she will have to be loose schooled on the day. With this in mind, we decided we should take Dizzy to an indoor school so that it’s not completely new for her on the day – massive thanks to Laura Collett for kindly allowing us to use her indoor. Dizzy travelled very nicely and was impeccably well behaved loose schooling, demonstrating to us her beautiful attitude, paces and behaviour. We are very proud of this lovely youngster and have high hopes for her. We can only hope she will be as good on the day of the grading.
Meanwhile in the last week before futurity, we are trying to keep everything running as normal with the competition horses, liasing with our farrier to get all of our futurity horses feet trimmed neatly before the big day, and trying to keep our foals on the straight and narrow! Fingers crossed for a good day, wish us luck!