Day 4: British Showjumping National Championships
Day four was the start of the horse classes at the show and kicked off with some warm up classes in Championship Arenas 1 and 2. Jake Saywell was a clear winner in both the 1.20m and 1.30m Senior Open Warm Up classes with his father’s eight year old mare Dakota. A new ride for Jake this season, this was their first time in the ring together and boy did they do it justice.
Lily Freeman-Attwood was crowned the National under 14 Champion 2016 riding her dark bay mare, Topspin III. At 14 years old, this was the last chance Lily had to take the title and she rose to the occasion. The school girl from Shrewsbury has already achieved her HOYS ticket for this year winning the 138cm qualifying event at Weston Lawns Equitation Centre in Warwickshire. Runner up in the championship and just missing out was Oliver Fletcher who took second and third place with Little Business and Daher respectively.
Harry Charles was crowned the National under 18 Champion today as the riders who had qualified for the championship final joined together to put on a tremendous display of young jumping talent in Championship Arena 2, at the British Showjumping National Championships. As the stars of the future took centre stage in the jump off, 17 year old Harry from Hampshire produced the only clear round out of the five combinations who made it through riding Vivaldi Du Dom.
Nicole Pavitt secured her place at Horse of the Year Show 2016 in the Senior Foxhunter Masters riding Gemmarco 16, a homebred seven year old stallion. The competition proved intense creating an electric atmosphere as horses and riders tackled the challenging course designed by Mark McGowan. Nicole was delighted when she realised she had won, having ridden a double clear with a time of 37.35. “He’s been the easiest horse from day one, he’s only seven years old but he has a great attitude. We have had two foals from him this year and we have two other mares in foal to him ready for next year. The course rode well; it was testing in places but that is what you want at a championship. I knew I needed to respect the last fence because a few riders had previously took it on the angle and had it down. So I rode quite a wide loop to make sure I got a straight approach and it paid off,” explains Nicole.
Over in Arena 3 were the National Club Horse Championships. In the 1.00m Championship, Liz Pears clinched the victory aboard 12 year old Statham Nautius. Being the only clear in the class it was a well deserved win, especially after just missing out in the 90cm Championship, being pipped from the post by Suzannah Engelmann who was riding Lissin Rocket.
The class that everyone has been waiting for was the first leg of the Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) International Wild Card Series which took place in Championship Arena 1. 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.
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 http://canterbanter.co.uk/
Image caption: Robert Smith riding eight year old Ilton VD Spithoeve, winners of leg one of the Wild Card Series
Image credit: 1st Class Images