BELLA WILSON reports …
Aston Le Walls International (2) brought the second 4*event back to British Eventing circuit for 2021. There were some big names in the line up including Izzy Taylor, Laura Collett and Nicola Wilson to name a few. After what seemed like a wash out couple of weeks for eventing with Llanymynech being cancelled that weekend and Richmond and Broadway the previous weekend having to abandon their second day due to the amount of rain that had fallen it seemed like events on grass were a little bit touch and go. After speaking to Laura Collett she stated that the ground was amazing and ‘it was the best ground she has been able to ride on this season’. Similarly to Laura, Tom Jackson said that the utmost was done by organisers Ann and Nigel Taylor to keep the event afloat by moving the show jumping to a surface and moving the cross country fences over so horses could run on fresh tracks.
Nigel Taylor, event organiser, said ‘I was really pleased with the way it ran. The weather was perfect for the 2* and 4* classes however took a turn at the weekend’, however they still managed to see the whole weekend through, Nigel expressed his thanks to Andrew Hunters team who were able to keep the ground in such superb condition. Intrigued as to what it was like organising and running an International event in covid times, he stated that Covid19 ‘makes it more complicated with implementations of one-way systems and having to limit trade stands.’ He came to the conclusion he is looking forward to non covid times – I think we are all with you on that one Nigel!
Among the 12 nations that were represented across the board in the CCI-S 4*, female British riders sat at the top of the leader boards in both sections. In Section A Laura Collett on London 52, known at home as Dan came home on their dressage score of 20.5. After not running him across country at the Barefoot Retreats Burnham Market International (1) Laura stated that he ‘felt amazing in all three phases’. The pairs next run will be at Bicton in the 4*.
Rosalind Canter placed 1st in Section B of the CCI-S 4* on Lordships Graffalo closely followed by Piggy March on Brookfield Quality.
Tom Jackson had 9 horses running throughout the 7 day event. Out of those nine horses he had two wins. Forrest Gump 124, owned by S.H.E. Eventing AB, known at home as Hank placed first in the Advanced (section L). The last two events he has placed in the top 3, so this pair will definitely be one to watch in the Advanced at Little Downham at the start of June. Toms other winner was HH Moonwalk, an 8yr old known as Olaf, won the Intermediate (section G). Tom says he is really consistent and ‘knows his job’; this is easy to see from his impressive results. HH Moonwalk and Toms next run will be at Houghton, Norfolk.
Tom McEwen had 4 top 5 placings throughout the event including a win in the Advanced (section J) on Class Affair. He also placed third in the CCI-S 4* (Section A) on Toledo De Kerser.
Alongside Laura’s win in the 4* she placed first on Moonlight Charmer in the Intermediate (section H) and second in the Novice (section D) on Fein Cera Gravelotte.
On the final day of competition at Aston Le Walls, 15 year old Grace Partridge took first place in the PT class. After chatting to both her and Grace’s mum, the enthusiasm of them being out doing something they loved was so evident;
‘Master Macky has been a part of our family for 7 years, my older sister Freya represented Great Britain in the 2019 pony European championships riding Master Macky. I feel extremely lucky to have the opportunity to compete a true school master. My pony gave me a fantastic cross country round at Aston in tricky ground conditions. I was also thrilled with how he jumped in the showjumping, it felt like one of the best rounds I have done on him. The Aston team worked tirelessly to make sure that each day of competition could still go ahead in terrible weather conditions, I would like to thank them enormously. I hope to take Master Macky to the British pony championships at Belsay castle.’
Other section results:
Advanced Section J: 1st Tom McEwen; Class Affair. Section K: 1st Fiona Kashel; Drumhowan Black Magic. Section L: 1st Tom Jackson; Forrest Gump 124 CCI-S 2* Section C: 1st Eliza Stoddart; De Pleasure. CCI-S 4* Section A: 1st Laura Collett; London 52. Section B: 1st Rosalind Canter; Lordships Graffalo. Intermediate Section G: 1st Tom Jackson; HH Moonwalk. Section H: 1st Laura Collett; Moonlight Charmer. Section I: 1st Kevin Mcnab; Vidalgo. Section O: 1st Sian Davies-cooke; Harthill Storm. Section P: 1st Khia Cadney-moon; Cooley Exchange. Section Q: 1st Gemma Tattersall; Johan-Some. Section R: 1st Harry Meade; Russeljacket. Section S: 1st Tom Rowland; Quintilius Novice Section D: 1st Kat Raybould; Baumanns Fleur . Section E: 1st Vicky Tuffs; Kogola. Section F: 1st Austin O’connor; Randalstown Commando. Section M: 1st Tim Price; Viscount Viktor. Section N: 1st Caroline Harris; Ramatuelle. Section V: 1st Tara Jefferies; Good Boy Alex. Section W: 1st Vicky Brake; Lates Eclipse. Section X: 1st Olivia Marsh; Perseus II. Section Y: 1st Jeanette Brakewell; Jack Daniels Open Intermediate Section T: 1st Piggy March; I Diablo Joe. Section U: 1st Adam Harvey; Picasso V Open Novice Section Z: 1st Piggy March; Castletown Clover Open Novice U18 Section D1: 1st Isabel Rugman; Ardnore Vivendi Pony Trial Section E1: 1st Grace Partridge; Master Macky
IMAGES COURTESY OF DANIELLE CHAPLIN