The United States Olympic Dressage Team has arrived in England and are settled into their ideal location and Jack and Linda Keenan’s Layham Hall Farm in Suffolk, England just a one-hour drive from London. United States Team Coach and Technical Advisor, Anne Gribbons sent DressageDaily a few photos and a report as promised, to DressageDaily to share with our readers. “Let me tell you a little about what we are doing here in England, “ Anne’s e-mail began. “We live at a perfect "yard" belonging to Linda and Jack Keenan about an hour and a half from London. Our horses have their own private barn adjacent to the indoor arena and they are settled in as if they had lived there always. Their flight was an easy one, direct from Newark to Stansted with only a short van ride on each end. That really helped them arriving in good shape. We work all six horses daily, with rest days planned, of course.
The day starts with a team meeting, and then we train while the other team members and the staff, including Jenny Van Wieren, Eva Salomon, Dr. Rick Mitchell and Debbie McDonald who is here for Adrienne Lyle watch each session. When we finish, and after lunch, we have fitness training lead by Steffen with riders, grooms and staff suffering and laughing our way through his tough exercises.
Since we could not go to Hickstead as planned, due to the flooding rain, we staged two days of shows at home in full show regalia and reviewed the whole thing together in videos. On Monday, we go for team processing in London, and then back here to train, and the horses leave for Greenwich on July 28th.
The farm is situated on rolling hills with mares and foals in the paddocks and big lush trees and hedges surrounding it. We live in two separate B&B's in the village of Hadleigh, one long street that has everything you need and plenty of pubs. The houses are from forever ago, and a church built sometime in 1200. And a river runs through it….
The team spirit is good, the horses are healthy so far, and please ask everyone to send us good thoughts!