Packing the lorry for an overnight show
Hands up, who watched with wonder as the Team GB lorries rolled out of each rider’s yard, lighting up the night with union jacks blowing in the wind? Altogether, 325 horses, 59 grooms, 20 tonnes of horse feed and 100 tonnes of specialist equipment flew on the Boeing 777s to Japan. I don’t know about you, but our first thought was, “Wow, that’s a lot of organising”.
Luckily (or unluckily?), most of us don’t have to pack for an 18-hour flight to Tokyo; however, even packing for an overnight show can be a daunting task. In part two of our Perfect Packing mini-series, we will guide you through the process, ensuring that you don’t leave any essentials behind.
Lorry packing is always slightly different from packing a car and trailer. While you might think that it’s quicker and easier because a lot of your kit is permanently stored in the lorry, this very reason means you must be a little more organised pre-competition.
When you bring a car and trailer home from a show, you empty it straight away, so you’re not trailing your rugs and saddle cloths back and forward to work with you. The lorry is a different story; you are probably tired when you get home, so does it really matter if things get left in there for a few days? Just like that, a few days inevitably turns into the next time you’re away somewhere.
Before you begin the packing process, you must remove everything that lives in the lorry to ensure it is clean and in good condition. Have you seen our handy Laundry Bags, by the way? Once everything is out and in the washing machine, give the floors a sweep and wipe the surfaces to ensure you start with a good, clean environment.
You’ll need a few different lists for this one;
1. Rider essentials
2. Horse – competition gear
3. Horse – travel and stable
4. Lorry Supplies
We have packing lists available here. Let’s start with you, the rider. It’s hard enough to pack an overnight bag when you are going for a non-horsey night away, let alone a two to three-day competition or training camp. So again, make this easy for yourself and tick things off your list as you go.
You’ll want a variety of clothes, just in case the weather is a little temperamental. Use our spacious Kit Bag to pack plenty of “okay to get mucky” clothes for mucking out, grooming, and walking the course along with a different set of show whites for each day of competition. You’ll also need pyjamas that are fit to be seen on the late-night toilet run following a couple of G&Ts. Finally, remember your toiletries such as a toothbrush, shampoo, and sun cream, to name a few.
Pop your show jacket, body protector, boots, and helmet all together in the wardrobe, along with a vast array of jackets and gilets – you just never know which one you’ll need.
Utilise external tack lockers and assign one to competition gear and another to stable/overnight equipment, if possible. Never the two shall meet.
In your competition locker, you’ll need a few Tidy Tack Room essentials to keep everything in order. We highly recommend our Saddlecloth Bags to keep saddlecloths for each day of competition clean. Your grooming kit, plaiting box, studs and lotions and potions can be stored neatly in our Stable Bag to ensure you have everything on hand, and our Bandage/boot Bags are ideal for storing exercise bandages along with multiple sets of jump boots. You can quickly identify each bag with the printed lettering, which comes as standard, meaning your days of frantically searching for those perky overreach boots are officially over.
The rug racks in your lorry are perfect for popping rug bags on; again, each comes labelled to allow you to pluck the correct one from the shelf, first time, every time. Our smaller Rug Bags are perfect for fleeces, coolers, fly rugs and waterproof quarter sheets, and our Field and Stable bags store heavier overnight rugs. You can even stack them outside your temporary stable in case the temperature dips. It might also be handy to position a second Stable Bag here with essentials such as a spare lead rope and headcollar, some brushes and a hoof pick. We can print your contact details on the top of this bag to ensure the stable manager knows who to call should there be an emergency during the night.
Finally, lorry supplies. It goes without saying that you’ll need plenty of food, drink (don’t forget the Gin) and cleaning supplies. You’ll also need clean bedding; make sure you have comfy pillows and a range of blankets to help you get a good night’s sleep ahead of another big day tomorrow. Our Kit Bags are amazing for storing your bedding; simply fold it up, pop it in and voilà, your living space is free from clutter and ready for another productive day. It’s even got a handy pocket at the front for your slippers.
As always, tidy as you go. Whether you are in the lorry or at the stable block, pretend you are taking part in the All-Star Academy, and Pammy Hutton is closing in on you, clipboard in hand. You don’t want to lose any precious stars for having a messy area, do you?
P.S. Did you know that we have an incredible download library, bursting full of handy packing lists and advice on what to wear for each discipline? Check them out and save them for your next show here: