2 Septembre, Chateau-Gontier, France~ I am now following the H.H. Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan race in Craon, France…a beautiful green turf track between Normandy and the Loire Region. After traveling up from the South of France…and visiting many of the older chateau and ruins that are prolific in the countryside, we now find ourselves an hour + outside of Paris. The country here has horse ranches (haras) with great green pastures…and the horses seem fat and happy. On the way up, we happened to pass right into Pompadour…this is where there is a National Stud…horses of exceptional quality kept for stud and made available to any owner in France. We stopped across from the castle of the Marquise de Pompadour (1721-1764). King Louis XV loved to hunt in the region, and he often took the Marquise with him. When she became the favorite of the King in 1745, she began the Stud as a private enterprise for the Chateaux. It went into ruin after the Revolution but was re-established by Napoleon as a National Stud.
Next we traveled through Saumur, the site of the famous French National School of Equitation. I’ve been here several times, but never visited when I could see one of the spectacles performed by the talented horses and horsemen.
After the race at Craon, we will travel back down to Central France for the European Championships at Florac. I’ll have the final entries and quick results and news from there. The entry list published was given to me by the OC and has a total of 142 entrants. This will include reserve riders as well. More news to come on the View from Here. A bientot, Pamela