Badminton Jog, Wednesday

And finally the sun came out for Badminton after the wettest 18 months on record in the UK and a raft of cancellations this spring.  On Tuesday there was standing water in places in the Park but that had improved considerably by Wednesday and, although it is drying all the time, it still is going to be testing in places on Saturday.

Sunshine is so welcome though since we have not seen much of it since September and horses were entitled to be spooking at their shadows today.  A jog in good weather in front of Badminton House is always such a special occasion and with Tim and Jonelle both having black horses they sure did sparkle and looked ready to rock.

Vitali is a brat at the jog and he has given Tim a hard time at Badminton and Burghley so Tim stepped ahead of the game here and obtained permission to go in first ( out of number order ) and also not to halt in front of the Ground Jury.  If Vitali can be persuaded up the lane to the archway at Badminton he waits until Tim halts before the judges then he rapidly engages reverse and he is very very adept at going backwards.  Vitali came up from his North Left stable, went straight up the lane, trotted towards the judges, prepped to stop and then found himself past them and on down the strip.  He still barged into Tim and looked like a drunken sailor as he swerved left and right but it was over before he knew it and he was heading back to his box looking slightly perplexed and relieved all at once.  It’s just nerves and for sure, the Badminton jog is a stressy affair for many of the horses and it was great of the powers that be to let Tim handle it that way.  Although Tim did comment afterwards that he felt like he had been so rude to the judges not to stop and say hello!

Grappa Nera (Grape) is quite the Princess and likes a show of public support for her appearances so made the most of her jog time by looking like the equestrian equivalent of Princess Diana in a revenge dress moment.  She dazzled, Jonelle looked stunning in her ME+EM dress and they both exuded positive vibes.

Jonelle is working in collaboration with ME+EM this season for carefully planned jog outfits and it’s looking like a hit combination for sure!

All scoring, live results and info on

Jonelle and Grape dressage 9.24 GMT Friday, Tim and Vitali 12.04 GMT.

NZL-Tim Price presents Vitali during the CCI5* 1st Horse Inspection. 2024 GBR-MARS Badminton Horse Trials CCI5*. Gloucestershire. Great Britain. Wednesday 7 May. Copyright Photo: Libby Law Photography