Monday, 30 March 2009
Sunday, 29 March 2009
On the way to fetch Gethin and Iona from uni on Friday, I called in at the Outdoors Show (I had free tickets!) which turned out to be a detour well worth making. I even discovered Rowena's neighbour James Moreton presiding there in a yurt (or ger as the Mongolian version is called) He and his wife Karina run travel company http://www.panoramicjourneys.co.uk/ which runs off-the-beaten-track holidays in Mongolia and Bhutan.
We are all anticipation at the moment, as one of the Section B mares, Millcroft Simone (property of fellow breeder and friend Rob Jones who keeps his ponies here) is dripping milk and due to foal before the night is out.
Monday, 23 March 2009
There was a certain amount of media concern that a doddery old senior citizen such as myself would be able to hobble her way across China. They seemed mollified when I pointed out that a British woman even older than me (Rosie Swale) has just RUN round the world.
While waiting for feedback, I was called by ITV Wales, who want to cover the ride. A palpable media frenzy for Pumpsaint!
I am pleased to say we have three new sponsors. Charles Owen have donated a ProII skull cap to replace my decidedly dodgy old riding hat. To the highest safety specifications for which Charles Owen are renowned, it is also lightweight and well-ventilated with gold heat reflective paint. To complement this I am being sent a safety helmet shade all the way from Australia by bush hat company Cutana, who make wonderful shady brims in a variety of colours to fit on safety helmets. My fears re sunburn are thus gone!
On the first stage of the ride I forgot to sort out safety reflective gear, which I bitterly came to regret after a couple of scary moments riding on Chinese roads after dark. Shires Equestrian have kindly offered to provide said gear to keep me safe.
Thursday, 19 March 2009
Monday, 16 March 2009
And an on the move video taken by a passing motorist :-
And an article in China Daily
I have now actually booked my flight out to Beijing for April 5th to arrive on the morning of the 6th. This gives nearly two weeks to gird up my loins before the start of the next leg of the Long Horse Ride on the April 18th. This has been set to coincide with the Guangting reservoir Endurance Ride.
And here are my new Just Chaps, especially designed for the ride, and the ultimate in equestrian sartorial elegance. Black wih red piping, they sport Union Jack and Chinese flag on opposing legs. They are excellent quality, and extremely comfortable. I can't wait to show them off at the start of the ride next month! See http://www.justchaps.com/ for their range of colourful chaps for every occasion.
(This post was published late!) Snow has been falling all around and Dyfi our sheep dog has been bounding everywhere in seventh heaven. However it has meant more work for me trundling wheelbarrows of hay out to the field in front of the house for welsh pony stallion Cwrtycadno Cymro and his two mares. Thankfully I don't need to worry about the ponies down by the river as they have two big bales to keep them happy.
I am only left with the little Welsh filly foal now, as friend Sarah Ollis has bought and collected Cwrtycadno Pahang - a lovely big bay colt by Welsh cob Maesmynach Flyer out of my endurance arab Silver Sea Gem. He is destined to follow in the hoofprints of Cwrtycadno Zeus, another part-bred Sarah bought from me a few years ago. Zeus has had a very successful endurance career, and last year was winner of the Cairo award for the best part-bred arab in EnduranceGB's annual awards. after his half brother Cwrtycadno Keltic Star the year before. So Pahang has a big act to follow!
Arrangements for the ride have been progressing well thanks to Irish lawyer David McNeill who has helped to negotiate an agreement with the Chinese Equestrian Association. And the British Equestrian Federation have agreed to help out with contacts in the countries we pass through as well as publicising the ride on their website.
However we are still desperately looking for some financial sponsorship to help cover the costs of running the China section. Any suggestions gratefully received!