Show Season in Full Swing

In her spare time, Dengie Feed Advisor Katie Evans enjoys riding side-saddle in a wide range of disciplines including dressage, showing and jumping. In her latest blog, she updates us on how her showing season has gone so far.

May is always a busy month with shows, but this year seemed to be particularly full on! We started the month off with Royal Windsor Horse Show on the first weekend in May, a week earlier than normal meaning one less week of prep! Unfortunately, the weather was not on our side and by the Sunday when we were competing, the lorry park looked more like a ploughed field than a showground. The walkways, warmups and grass rings had also gotten pretty churned up. The Windsor team were brilliantly organised with a team of tractors to tow everyone on and off, as well as putting straw down on all the walkways and rolling the rings. I have to say, I did feel very grateful to at least not be riding a grey!!

Katie Evans and Pearl at Royal Windsor Horse Show 2024

Next up was Hadleigh Show who had side saddle classes for the first time this year. This is the first time we have been to Hadleigh which had a brilliant atmosphere and a lot going on for a one-day show! Pearl was quite disappointed that the Working Hunter fences had been left up from the class before and she wasn’t allowed to jump them, but I was very pleased with how she went to come second in both her classes.

The following weekend we had an early start for Hertfordshire County Show with the side saddle classes being in the ring for 9am. Again, to Pearl’s disappointment we warmed up next to the show jumping but didn’t get to jump round, but she felt absolutely fantastic in the ring to win the Best Horse or Pony Ridden Side Saddle class and second in the Ladies Show Horse class, just missing out on our London International Horse Show ticket. She then stood Reserve Side Saddle Champion which I was thrilled with. Herts is always such a lovely show with so much to do and see but unfortunately, we didn’t have time to look around this year as we had to shoot straight off to get to my friend’s wedding, which I thankfully made just in time!

We finished the month off with two days at the Suffolk Show and as we stayed for the duration, we had plenty of time to look round, shop and watch some other classes. On the Wednesday, Pearl won the Side Saddle Concours d’Élégance class and on Thursday she was pleased to finally get to jump in the Working Show Horse class. She jumped a fantastic clear which I was thrilled with, to come second, again narrowly missing another London International ticket!

June is not quite so busy, we have one show planned, our side saddle area show, and a couple of dressage outings which we will also do side saddle as we are hoping to qualify for the British Dressage Associated Championships again this year. We also have a couple more London International qualifiers planned for July at Kent County and Tendring, as well as our Side Saddle National Show at the end of the month.

horse eating from bucket

Pearl is fed Dengie Ulser Lite with a performance balancer to provide her with a balanced diet which is high in fibre but low in calories, sugar and starch. She is a good doer but this diet provides her with plenty of slow-release energy and stamina for her busy workload, without promoting weight gain. Pearl also has a small amount of Dengie Alfa-Beet with plenty of water to help keep her hydrated, she has this and salt in her ration every day, but an electrolyte supplement is added on her harder working days. I keep the Alfa-Beet in her ration every day, to ensure no sudden changes are made to her diet by only adding it in on show days which could cause digestive disturbances.

A big thank you as always to my mum who is top driver and groom and gives up her free time to come to shows with me!

Katie Evans and Pearl with her mum