Sonia Chapman reports ..
Heidi Woodhead had a whitewash or to be precise a bay wash of wins across the Novice sections with Gorgeous DHI and Handsome DHI, both living up to there names and producing classy double clears.
Trudy Johnson and Reggae Man, bagged a second Open Novice win in as many weeks. Which is a brilliant result considering earlier in the season, it seemed that Reggae Man no longer wished to be a eventer. A great dressage of 29.0 saw them lying in second place, followed up with a fantastic jumping clear around a course causing numerous issues. Particularly at the large drop into the water 3 fences from home, followed by a spooky swan out. The cross country time also proved tight with only the winner and the speed queen Vittoria Panizzon on Secret Legacy making it.
The U18 Open Novice was won by Jemima Fawcett on Kilimazing Topaz, followed closely by the amazing pony stallion Glencarrig Dolphin and Lucy Baguley.
Both normal novices had good sized sections, but both the Open Novices were quite small in number maybe due to the hot weather, hard ground or due to the numerous competition options this weekend.
Shelford ran four sections of BE90 regional finals, to allow people to obtain that coveted spot at the grassroots finals at Badminton in 2020. The sections each had roughly twenty competitors, however each section was extremely competitive. Each section winner finished on twenties finishing score, where clear rounds in the showjumping were numerous and time penalties on the cross country costly. The section winners were Hannah Parr and Tinkers Boy in section M, Section N was Annie Smith and Annaghmore Lad where there dressage score was good enough to lead the way even with a pole in the showjumping. Maria Veale and Gabbana II topped Section O, the final regional final section S being topped by Isabella Stagg and Quite a Compliment.
The aptly named “Aren’t I Lucky” won the competitive 4 year old section, in the last chance for people to grab a place at the Oberston breeding championships. However “Aren’t I Lucky” had in fact already claimed her place, having picked up a win and second in there three events this season. This could be one to watch at the finals? This four year old section, ridden by a number of great professionals showed there class with only one horse out the section of 22 finishing with cross country jumping penalties. While a couple with less competitive dressage scores withdrew after showjumping, it seemed to be mainly a dressage competition.
Two small BE100 Regional finals with fields of roughly 15 people, were again dressage competition which were won by Hannah Lucy Somery on Ballylahive Prince in Section H and Abigail Unwin on Eden III in section J. Best of luck to all combinations that qualified for Badminton.
Images courtesy of Stacey Smalley