“Hi,

I hope you all had a good Christmas?  We took Zing out over Christmas to a couple of Pony Club training rallies and he was super, as usual, and the instructor there loved him! I was supposed to take him out last Sunday but the weather was awful but hopefully we will be taking him out cross-country schooling at Tweseldown again on Sunday. He's had lots of hacking recently and I've been introducing lateral work, such as shoulder-in, shoulder-fore and turn on the haunches, to get him working from behind more which has worked amazingly well and he is going better than ever.

I also managed to teach him to do a flying change which has always been a dream of mine and I can't believe it's happened! He's always struggled to sort his legs out even when jumping and hasn't ever changed properly while jumping so this is a real achievement.

I have also been giving my friend lessons on Zing, as I think he has so much to give and teach that I want it to be shared. By the end of the lesson my friend who had never ridden on the bit before, had Zing going amazingly and it's was great to visibly see how quickly she was learning from him in just an hour. She is riding in the photo of Zing over the jump with placing poles- she was learning about the importance of the quality of the canter and the line of approach on striding and the shape of his jump.

Now I've got my ‘mock’ exams out the way I look forward to getting Zing out more ready for the event season. I wasn’t accepted by Cambridge which I rather expected as I was really nervous for the first interview and it didn't go so well. Nonetheless it was a good experience and I still have three other universities to hear back from. If I don't get in this year it means I have time to earn some money and have a break- and have another year riding Zing! So I won't be too upset if I have to reapply next year!”

Olivia & Zing