The American sports season is now in full swing and Asmir couldn’t be happier. The amount of sport taking over our television at home has been incredible, with the spring baseball season commencing in the States, the build up to the NBA basketball finals beginning. The continuous Masters coverage took over every phone, tablet and television Asmir had access to last weekend. I didn’t feel left out however, as this meant I had no excuse to avoid studying for my upcoming exam. For those of you that don’t know, I proudly hold an HGV license and as I may need to drive other rider’s horses as well as my own I have to hold the drivers Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) as well. So I have spent many happy hours studying such fascinating subjects as the EU working time directive, various load-handling systems and transport heath and safety! Having done all this, I am planning to take the test to drive articulated vehicles (Yes, articulated horseboxes!). Perhaps I could join Lisa on Ice Road Truckers one day?!
This week sees the start of the FEI World Cup Finals in Las Vegas where Charlotte DuJardin and Valegro are set to defend their title. It has been exciting watching the qualification stages up to the finals and even enjoying the coverage of the horses’ journey over the pond to Las Vegas. Forty of the world’s top showjumping and dressage horses gathered in the early hours at Amsterdam airport before boarding a chartered cargo flight direct to Las Vegas. Many people often ask me how the horses move inter-continentally and they are usually quite surprised to hear they can take flights just as we do. They fly in pairs in a special stable crate and get loaded into the hold by the hydraulic lifts just as any other cargo. A team of grooms travels on the same flight, and has access to the horses throughout.
Although I was due to attend this fantastic show, I made the decision to stay home and focus on my training for upcoming International shows, one of which will be my debut riding for Great Britain. I look forward to telling you more about this in my next column.
On the note of good results, I was thrilled to have a first place at “Intermediate I” (the highest advanced test I have competed in to date) in a recent competition with Foxy. This gives me great optimism as we move ever closer to the top test level in dressage, Grand Prix.
It was great as well to witness the passionate Stoke fans celebrate a well deserved point, on a rare away match trip for me to West Ham. Unable to control our sheer delight at the last second goal for Stoke, my family, friends and I threw our hands up in the air jumping and cheering in delight to suddenly feel the icy disapproving stares of the West Ham fans that were surrounding us bearing down on our group. Safe to say we made an immediate and swift exit to the safety of a hospitality box. It was a great feeling to see Stoke take a point home from London last Saturday.
Also in recent news, Asmir had a successful European qualifier against Andorra winning 3-0 securing their position in the top 3 of the table. These 3 points were vital as Bosnia got off to a slow start. The new manager with his own playing style has complimented the playing style of the team, and the future for Bosnia’s Euro 2016 campaign looks very brighter.