Lt Downham (1) kicked off their 2015 eventing season on 05 June 2015, running a whopping 839 combinations in 30 sections, over 5 courses over 3 days!! Lt Downham is always a super event come rain or shine. The peat soil guarantees fabulious ground come rain or shine. The dressage arenas are on grass, away from the hussle and bussle of the trade stands, show jumping and cross country, but back onto the lorry park. The show jumping is held in the huge main arena, surrounded by the trade stands and secretaries, and the cross country course is gallop and flat! And hills or mounds are entirely man made.
This year sees Protexin Equine Premium sponsor the Novice Accumulator Series, a first for Lt Downham. The series will run across all 3 events at Lt Downham in 2015 with events in June and August serving as qualifying events for a grand final in October. The Grand Final carries a £1,500 prize pot for riders, with at least £600 going to the winning rider!
Who can take part and how do you qualify?
The NAS is open to ALL Novice sections (including ON and ONu18)
The top 2 from each qualifying section will receive automatic qualification to the October Grand Final
The 15% of each section will be taken forward to the NAS leader board as potential ‘wildcard’ qualifiers
The Grand Final run as a section of 40 – they will all dressage, show jump and cross country together to create the Championship feel in October
Prize money will be given to the top 6, with a special prize given to the highest placed under 18 rider.
Current Leader board after Lt Downham (1):
Dressage starts early, at 8am and Friday saw the event kick off with the Intermediates followed by the Advanced. The weather got progressively better over the weekend with many even getting a little sunburnt on Sunday!!
All eyes were on Oli Townend and the gorgeous Lanfranco, owned by Andrew Hoy, who was also competing in the Advanced section, who didn’t disappoint in the dressage with a beautiful test to score 26.3, lying 2nd before the jumping phases, and finishing 3rd after tapping a couple of poles in the show jumping.
The show jumping is held on a huge grass area in front of the trade stands and secretaries tent. It caused a few problems over the full 3 days keeping the arena party busy. The Novice final treble combination on Saturday of oxer, 2 strides to upright, 1 stride to a further upright, caused carnage. With many just not jumping in right, causing the last two elements to be tricky to get the correct strides.
The cross country course was presented beautifully, as always at Lt Downham with perfect ground. All five courses looked fantastic, using both water complexes in all courses. The 90’s even had to go through the main water twice!! The courses saw both old & new fences, including the new steps which appeared in the Intermediate and Advanced sections in the middle of the course. These didn’t cause any issues thought. Fence 15AB in the Intermediate section seemed to be the fence to ride carefully, with many picking up 20 or even 65 penalties at this fence. Fence 5AB also saw Mr Nicholson take a dive riding Mr Cruise Control!!
Mark Kyle took the advanced win on the gorgeous Step in Time II, the only combination clear inside the time cross country.
Izzy Taylor scored the highest number of horses entered, with a massive 12!! Closely followed by Alex Postolowsky with 11 and Oli Townend with 10. The weekend saw many top riders and their horses run, and many picking up prizes and wins. Izzy managed top 10 placings with 10 of her rides, Alex & Oli both managed 8 top 10 placings. 27% of all competitors managed a double clear, proving the event to definitely not be a dressage competition!
Miss Deborah Doyle with Dandy III set the best dressage of the whole event scoring 21.5 in section Z the 100+, with a total of 13 sub 25 scores over the entire event!! Absolutely amazing!!
Lt Downham (2) is set for 1&2 August, running sections from BE80 to Novice. The first BE80 to ever be run at Lt Downham! Hope to see you all there.
Report by Rachel Cabson
Photographs Courtesy of Lorraine Porter
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BE100 DR, SJ, XC