the first time and we even hadacanter together.Wedid that on two different ridessoitwasn’tafluke! Likesomething off aLloydsadvert we were!Zan got his confidencewith alpacas and got even morerelaxed trailering about the place. Obi and Ichipped away at our solo hacking and then one dayand epiphany! Thewise wordsofmywonderful horsemanship instructorSeancame into my head “Ride him likeyou stole him Ange!” So Idid! It wasbrilliant! Areal turning point in our partnership Ithink. These little victoriesinour journey

my team,soIdecided that Ineededto makethe ridesaschallenging as possible. Moremiles, faster, newbridleways,pub rides, trailering out to newareas,ponying one horse off the other.And then it hit me –this washuge -I realised Iwas finally at apoint wheregoing foranormal hack waswell within my comfort zone!!! Anormal hack out wasn’tchallenging enough! Hi, I’mAngela and in the pastI have suffered extreme confidenceissues when riding out. Glad Igot that off my chest.Soyes –ahuge positiverealisation! It wasgreat to track my progressand

adventure“count me in mum!”,but 16.1hh ISH Obi wasmoresceptical… “hmmmm, hackathon yousay…100 milesyou say? Is Zancoming or will I have to bravethe pheasant bombs/hedge monsters on my own?”. It took some time and much talk of carrotsbeforeObi finally agreed too, safe in the knowledge Zanwould be doing the lion’sshare of the miles. During negotiations Obi was keen to remind me that he wasstill on light dutiesafter anasty foot abscess had him off work mostofthe spring and his stifleswerestill giving him jip as his steroid injections hadn’tkicked in yet. Time to get cracking –onthe 20th

MayZan and Iheaded off forour first hackathon ride.I should point out here that Zanisone of thosegold dust, paragon of virtue,old head on young shoulderstypes. As well as exploring all our local riding he’staken me to Holkham Beach, to the NewForestand earlier in Maywetackled abrilliant Peak AdventureTrekwith Rachael Shawyer. With everynew environment, plastic bag in atree, massivebus or peleton of cyclists this ponyprovestomehe’s my hero. He’snot arobot, he canhave alittle worry –but if Isay it’s OK he justtrieshis socks off.Actually his feathers. He trieshis massivethick,pain in the bum to keep cleanfeathersoff. Oh! And did Imention he’sanex-Blue Crossrescue pony?!Theysigned him overtomelastyear–soproud! Sorry, wherewas I? Yes–meand Zan-the- Man headed out forour first hackathon ride,then our second, then our third. Isoon knewthat barring injury the

100 mile goal should be easily doable especially with Zanthe super ponio on

be part of Brooke’shackathon facebook group.Some proper greatpeople out therehacking away and having ablast with it. The mileswereclocking up as were the little acheivementsfor me and the boys.I ponied Obi off Zanfor

together were wonderful but whilstwe were fast approaching the 100 mile target, my fundraising wasdownonwhere I’d hoped it would be.Whatcould Idoto push it to the £250 mark?Thiswas my final social media post. Essentially Ipleaded…. “8.3 milestodaytaking me to 97.1 milesintotal -one moreride and I’ll have done it. Pleeeeease donate-if Ireach my fundraising target I’ll even do my lasthackathon ride bridleless! Link fordonations in commentsxx” That did the trick. Within about 20

minutes the fundraising target was smashed and Irealised my friends wanted to laugh at me splattered acrossthe Northamptonshire countryside.Luckily Iknewthat my super Zancould save the day. The final ride wasperfect. Justperfect.

My exceptionally wonderful ponycoupled with manyyears of horsemanship study and preparation culminated in my dream ride.Oncewewereoff road the bridle came off and we rode.Wejustrode, no drama other than excessivecursing of horseflies. My wonderful supportive husband joined us halfway round to take some pictures,evidencefor those who donated! Whilstwe’ve hacked bridleless oncebeforethatwas under supervision of Sean Coleman (amazing instructor and horseman). This wasarealtest of my ownabilitiesand confidence. So that wasthe perfect endof

#myhackathon. £305 raised at the time of writing plus £56.25 in gift aid. 100.9 miles completed in 1month. My horsesare fit and lean and Iam4kg lighter.Wehad a blast–now bring on the next challenge!


informationabout TheChallenge visitwww. PleasementionCentralHorseNewswhenresponding toAdvertisementsJULY/AUGUST2018 27

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