Daniel Bates - Growing in confidence

Daniel Bates

Hi everyone, I hope you've all been enjoying the sun? I am just letting you know what I've been up to in July.

July has been a mad one on so many different levels with visits, new skills and just a overhaul in the way I've looked at my riding and the progression I am now making.

As you will already know at the beginning of July my dressage career took a big step forward by a move to my new trainer International Dressage rider Levi William Hunts yard in beautiful Gloucestershire. You all know Wilson but now I can show you my beautiful 3 year old Hugo who was my 18th birthday present. Hugo is being lovingly looked after and backed by professional dressage rider Laura Wollen at her yard, which means my two boys are still together.

I have learnt so much in 4 weeks that sometimes it makes my head spin. I've learnt so much regarding my riding. I am now cantering everyday with not a lunge line in sight and riding full arenas indoor and outdoors, taking on new movements to appreciate the dimensions of different size arenas and have had the opportunity to ride a selection of horses in addition to Wilson which is all adding to my confidence levels.

I am now tacking up and turning out on my own and have also experienced hacking out for the first time which was a scary but so worth it experience.

I should be out competing in September which I am really looking forward to and feeling positive about.

So What Else Have I Been Up Too?

Between 4th - 8th July, I went along to Hartpury Festival of Dressage to watch Levi compete on his beautiful and talented horses and bumped into a couple of Paralympic Legends who gave me some valuable advice on Para Dressage (Sir Lee Pearson & Natasha Baker MBE).

I also then got to watch a reversal of roles when Levi turned supporter to his supergroom Nicky Hill when she competed, which was amazing to see.

On the 18th July I was back at Hartpury watching a Stressage to Dressage demonstration when I got to see Wallace the dressage mule who was fantastic.

I then made the journey to Hickstead over a 2 day period so I could watch Levi once again represent Great Britain on the beautiful Abbey Tiron. I was so proud and honoured to be able to see the ride in person and to know that, that was my trainer and friend.

I have done more and visited more venues in the past few months then I could ever hoped which is why I need to say a massive thank you to my parents who support me emotionally and financially and my mom who spends 7 hours a day driving me to and from training (from Staffordshire to Gloucestershire) and for driving 800 miles over 2 days to get me to Hickstead. I know I'm lucky and appreciate everything they do for me to allow me to live my dream. I couldn't do any of it without the team I now have around me and leave the yard everyday smiling and positive.

See you at the end of August

Catch up with Daniel Bates other blogs here

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