Horse of the Year Show Wild Card Qualifier & National 1.40m Championship

Horse of the Year Show Wild Card Qualifier

Incorporating National 1.40m championship


Today the greatly anticipated first leg of the Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) International Wild Card Series took place in Championship Arena 1 in the shape of the National 1.40m Championship. The audience was expecting to see some exciting top class competition and the championship did not disappoint.


It was Robert Smith riding eight year old Ilton VD Spithoeve who emerged the winner after a spectacular competition that saw 44 competitors battle to get one step closer to HOYS. The first round saw a number of riders go clear so course builder Mark McGowan stepped it up a notch by setting an up to height and technical jump off. Hot on Robert’s tail was Harry Charles with Controe who finished on a time of 40.58 but it wasn’t quite enough to beat Robert who came in on 39.11 seconds.


Thrilled with his win in leg one, gaining 15 points in the series, Roberts says: “I was surprised there were so many clears through to the jump off, because it was a good course. They put the fences up a fair bit in the jump off which made for good competition all round. I’ve had Ilton now for 18 months so we are still getting to know each other really but he jumped really well today. We won the Gentleman’s Championship here last year which was our first season together. I like that the classes are all outdoors this year, it creates a much better atmosphere.”


Despite just missing out on first place, Harry Charles did not go away empty handed. He picked up 12 points for the Wild Card Series and was also crowned the National 1.40m Champion with Peter Charles’ horse Controe.


The next leg of the HOYS Wild Card International Wild Card Series takes place tomorrow afternoon in Championship Arena 1 and will be live streamed on


For further information please contact or call 02476 858 205 or go to

Image captions: Harry Charles riding Controe, 1.40m National Champion

Image credit: 1st Class Images