Diva’s second outing came at the Royal Norfolk Show. We travelled from Rutland down to Cambridgeshire to pick up my sister Michelle with her Shetland pony Melland Jackson Jive, a nine-year-old gelding by Diva’s grandsire Mint of Drakelaw. Michelle has owned him from a three-year-old and he is responsible for my love of the breed. He is experienced in the show ring, having wins under his belt at the Great Yorkshire Show and Lincolnshire County show with us.

We had planned an overnight stay as the Shetland section were originally scheduled to start at 8.30 a.m., however, just before the show a notification was sent out with the time being changed to a 10.15 start.

I needn’t have worried about how Diva (Melland Queen of Scots) would cope with a longer journey and a night in a strange stable. She didn’t turn a hair and immediately settled down to eating her feed and hay.

The change in the timetable meant Diva could have a bit of a lie-in before we had to get the ponies ready for the show ring. We were ready in good time and it was lovely to have two ponies to take into the collecting ring. The forecast had been for the weather to be very hot, but fortunately it was much cooler and more pleasant for both the ponies and us.

Diva was in the ring first for the Two and Three Year Old Fillies and Geldings class. It was a much busier show than her first one, but after a couple of spooks she settled nicely and trotted with enthusiasm. She stood beautifully and couldn’t have done any more for me in the individual show, and I was delighted when she was pulled in for fourth place.

A quick changeover of gloves and show cane and then Michelle took Jackson in the ring for the Gelding any age class. I thought he looked magnificent and he went one better than Diva by being awarded third place.

We put the ponies back in their stables for a rest whilst we had a look around the showground before loading up and heading home. It was 10.30 pm by the time I got Diva home, but she trotted down the ramp with ears pricked and tucked into her hay as soon as she was in the stable.

The following morning I turned Diva out with Mabel and Florence and no doubt she told them of her adventures. I’m sure Mabel managed to tell Diva that when she went to the Royal Norfolk she won! LOL!

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