Ruth Gregory reports
The last weekend of May, saw Bishop Burton, host its first event of the year. With classes from BE90 to OI, the event welcomed both ammeters and professionals to enjoy another great weekend.
Winners of the OI Section L were Izzy Taylor, and Monkeying Around, who finished on a score of 24.5. It’s been a successful season so far for the gelding, who’s owned by Mark Sartori and Izzy, as he won the AI at Kelsall, in April, as well as completing the CCI-S4* at the Dodson & Horrell Chatsworth International, a few weeks ago.
Christopher Whittle finished second riding Joanne Pullan’s, Kilwaughter Blade, on a final score of 31.2.
Topping the Intermediate Section K was Phil Brown, with the 11-year-old gelding Harry Robinson. Phil, originally rode the horse from BE100 through to Advanced from 2015, however, he parted with the gelding last August as he was sold to new owner, Joanne Kearns. Fortunately, due to a change in circumstances, the pairing was reunited just 8 days prior to Bishop Burton.
Despite, it being the horse’s first run since Burgham last July, with Phil, the pairing certainly weren’t out of practice.
“We were just hoping to get going again so the win was an added bonus!” Said Phil. “He now heads to Braham for the CCI-S4* and will also go to Gatcombe, for the intermediate Championships having qualified here at Bishop Burton.”
Cheshire based riders dominated two Novice Sections. Winning Section I was Andrew Heffernan, with his own and the Top Eventers Syndicate’s, On Point, finishing on their dressage of 28.0. On Point, who’s only a six-year-old, completed his first CCI-S-2* last time out at the Dodson & Horrell Chatsworth International. “I do still have a couple of syndicate places left in him, he’s going to be a really decent horse.” Said Andy, who’s aiming the grey gelding for Le Lion D’ Angers, in October.
In second was Tyler Cassells, with Cooley Copresenter. “He’s such a character,” says Tyler, “Thanks to the owners, Mark and Wendy Egerton’s, patience I feel I’m building a partnership with him.”
There was a role reversal in Section H, as the two riders battled it out again for first and second, this time Tyler finished top with Francesca Du Domanie R. “It was thrilling to win on syndicate owned Franscesca, as this was her final novice as she’s now upgraded to intermediate. It also made for a special day as all her owners were present from Cumbria, Cheshire and Suffolk!”
Both Tyler’s horses ran well at Chatsworth 2* prior to Bishop Burton.
“We hadn’t visited Bishop for a few years and hoped for a good sweetening run- the course was bold and took for positive riding and accurate lines.”
Tyler now takes both the horses to campaign Novice regional finals, in a hope to qualify for Gatcombe, later on in the season.
Andy, narrowly missed out on a double novice win finishing 0.2 penalties behind with Lisa Anson’s, and his own, Refiki. The gelding is on a great run of form having won last time out at Howick, and has now been upgraded to intermediate and is aimed for a run at 3* before the end of the season.
Katy Williams, and KOKO VD Zoute Stables, led from start to finish in BE100 Section F, finishing on their dressage of 27.3.
Katy, formally had a professional yard, eventing up to CCI3* (old). But unfortunately she suffered a serious fall in 2014, which resulted in significant nerve damage, sadly ending her professional career.
Despite, two years of rehabilitation she was determined to get back eventing, so purchased the mare as a 4-year-old to produce through the levels, whilst juggling motherhood alongside.
“She was green, and I’d only just got back riding when I bought her,” said Katy. “But we’ve learnt together with no pressures and just enjoyed it. I’m ecstatic with her win as she’s not very experienced at this level having only just moved up to BE100. Our Only previous 100 run was at Richmond, where she had an uncharacteristic hesitation at the water. However, we’ve put that behind us here at Bishop Burton. I would like to move her up to Novice before the end of the season, but there’s no pressure, as we’re taking each event as it comes.”
Victoria Briggs, also proved that balancing being a mum and eventing is possible, as she won the BE90Open Section D with, Border Bay. It was the combination’s first event back since Frickley Park, last July as Victoria’s been off through pregnancy.
“Bear felt amazing,” says Victoria, “Mum Liz, now Grandma, kept him fit while I was off. I had my daughter Isabella (Ella), only 14 weeks ago and ending up having an emergency c section after a full weekend of labour. My plan now is to run an open 100 and maybe try and get back to novice by the end of the year.”
Other results: BE100 Section E; Martyn Johnson, FMSH Ramiro; BE100 Section M; James Sommerville, Glenmora Bill; BE100 Section N; Victoria Blount, Faerlie Fancy; BE90 Section A; Gary Ralph, Carlton Argento; BE90 Section B; Lucy Woodhead, Rockrimmon Cool Dude; BE90 Section C; Harriet Morris-baumber, Coft Templar; I Section J; Katie Corteen, Forgeland Tiger Tot; N Section G; Izzy Taylor, Ballyfore Oh Man;