Millie Wain reports..
The glorious sun shone over Llanymynech Horse Trials on 24th-25th August. There were 16 sections of classes ranging from BE80(T) to Novice, including Regional Final qualifiers for the Mitsubishi Motors Cup. The cross country course at Llanymynech is unique in that riders travel across the Welsh border and then back into England on their way home.
The BE100open section was won by Katy Mousedale riding the 10 year-old gelding Conclusive. They finished on their dressage score of 25.3 penalties, and finished 3.5 penalties ahead of second place, which went to Bethany Humphries riding Brians Best. After the combination’s first win, we caught up with Katy:
“I purchased George in April from Helen Bell after having some rubbish luck with other horses. He is so lovely but not the easiest; he has been super consistent on the flat. We have had some fabulous results, including a 2nd at Skipton, 2nd at Bishop Burton, 4th at Stafford and 5th at Frickley. I am based as a working pupil with Jeanette Brakewell so I am truly in the best place to learn.
It was lovely to win at Llanymynech as it’s such a friendly event; the course was fantastic and the volunteers were all brilliant.
Our plans are to just keep having fun, He has helped me love eventing again after losing both my horses last season. We will compete in a few more 100’s before moving up to Novice.”
The BE100 regional final was hotly-contested, with the top 20% of combinations qualifying for the Mitsubishi Motors Cup held at Badminton in May. The winner of section K was Sarah Warner riding Zarento VDL. Camilla Hardie was a rider who will be heading there next year with Kellythorpes Adonis G; they were second in section K and competed on the same score as third place (28.3) but were closer to the optimum time of 5 minutes and 3 seconds. We spoke to Camilla after her success at Llanymynech:
“I have owned Bailey since he was 3 and he is now 7, so we have done everything together. He did the BE90 grassroots at Badminton earlier this year finishing in 22nd with a double clear. Then a handful of BE100s since, he has given me 2 RF’s tickets and this was our first go at Llanymynech, so I am rather surprised but very proud of him.
I had planned to do a couple more events and RF but those plans have gone out the window! We will do a little show jumping over the winter and last week he qualified for the Royal International Horse Show as a show horse so we need to brush up on our showing techniques too.”
There were three BE80(T) sections and Orla McEvoy took the top spot in section C aboard Annaghdown Castleside. They were in second place after the first phase but added nothing to their dressage score of 24.3 penalties. In second place was Emily Cousans riding Cane 11448, completing on their first phase score of 26.3 penalties. The cross country time proved to be influential in determining the top three; Georgina Hodson and Redinagh Clover added 2 time penalties to their dressage score of 24.5, meaning they came third by a very fine margin of 0.2 penalties.
After her win, we caught up with Orla McEvoy:
“Annaghdown Castleside (Mick) is now 21. I’ve owned him for 11 years. When we first got him he could only walk in straight lines due to various injuries with previous owners, one requiring over 300 stitches – we were advised to get him put to sleep. My mum hacked him for 4 years, and then my pony went lame so I asked if I could have a go at schooling him. He was obviously very rusty but over 2 years we built our confidence together and eventually he took me around my first ever BE back in 2015. In August 2016, we suffered a rotational fall and decided that he was just getting too old to event, having lost the sharpness he required to keep us both safe so we retired him to dressage and a little bit of show jumping. However this year he has come into his own, and is almost a new horse! I thought we’d have a go at Llanymynech BE and see what happens but I didn’t sleep at all last week as i was so worried i was pushing him too much! But he exceeded all of my expectations and took the whole day in his stride.
It’s felt incredible to win at Llanymynech, firstly because I have never won a BE before and secondly because I usually always fall off at Llanymynech!
We have riding club championships next weekend and then I am going to take him to the championships at Weston Park. I’d love to say that next year I want to do x, y and z but I’m just wanting to take the winter day by day and see how much more Mick has to give, given his age and history – but hopefully he’ll still be good for Llanymynech 2020!”
Just 0.1 penalties separated the top two combinations in section O of the novice. Steve Garrod claimed first place with Its Morka, having posted a dressage score of 30.8 penalties and jumping a fast double clear, adding 2.8 cross country time penalties to their first phase score.
Steve posted on his Facebook page (Steve Garrod Eventing):
“? ? winner winner??
Fantastic day at Llanymynech HT, It’s Morka wins the novice at only her second attempt. She pulled off a classy 30.8 double clear with a couple of time faults. Much love for this 6 year old?”
Just behind them was Annabel Carthy aboard the 6 year old Indigo Mist and third place went to Stuart Shaw riding Zaca Mesa.
The cross country time proved to be difficult to achieve over the novice course, with only 5 combinations out of 70 coming home within the time. In fact, in the Open Novice section, three pairs managed to do this and that was the top three: Emma Lawton, Katie Corteen and Steve Garrod.
Katie Mathias has a convincing win in BE90 section E. Katie was riding Lodor Carl and the combination scored the joint-best dressage score of the weekend. They finished on this to take the win on a score of 22.8 penalties, leaving them 4.7 penalties ahead of second place, which went to Emily Phillips and Frankie III. Katie and Lodor Carl are a very successful partnership, jumping a double clear every time out this year. In fact, in three seasons, they have averaged a win in every three runs and picked up 88 foundation points along the way.
Images courtesy of FRW Photography