Sonia Chapman reports …
Pippa Funnell reigned supreme at South of England run by her mother and brother, on Majas Hope her silver European team medallist from Luhmuhlen 2019 winning the small but elite Advanced Intermediate section. Majas Hope is not known for his enthusiasm for the dressage phase but with the maestro in the irons topped the field with a 25.8, with only fellow team members Kristina Cook and Billy the Red managing a dressage score in the twenties. Pippa commented that the ground was absolutely fantastic. “Three fun spins with the boys, great to have a one two in the AI with Majas Hope and Morelands Celebration”. Morelands Celebration (Clarke) is a new ride for Pippa this year, after previous rider and breeder Chuffy Clarke decided to change to showjumping full time. Clarke now joins Chuffy’s mother string with Pippa, no pressure there when the string contains Burghley winner MGH Grafton Street and Billy Beware! Kristina Cooke and her homebred, Mexican Law picked up third place in preparation of a step up to Advanced at Burnham Market. Showing the oldies still have it with a clutch of British up and coming riders picking up 4th, 5th and 6th in Libby Seed, Felicity Collins and Bella Inns Ker.
Tom Jackson and Forrest Gump 124 squeezed the win in the sole open intermediate section by 0.2 of a penaltiy form Tim Price and Falco VI. Tom was pleased that Forest Gump 124 had put in a solid performance in each phase only adding a couple of time to his dressage score. Tim was greedy enough to achieve 4 places in the top eight in this section, being extremely consistent in the dressage by achieving between 26.8 and 28.2. Second place Falco VI is ear marked for a trip to Saumur for the Four star long. Tim also commented that South of England had really updated the cross country providing a bit of everything with two waters, lots of turning combinations, drops, hills and arrowheads, while being another to comment of the good going.
Tom McEwen and MHS Brown Jack made their debut at Intermediate level a winning one, topping Section L after a great dressage and a fast time cross country. In fact Tom also picked up second place on his “Little Pocket Rocket” Something Extra by virtue of a quick cross country time, being only one of 3 with single figure time penalties. The third being Tom Jackson on Dassett Endeavour. While another classy 7 year old in there first intermediate finished fourth for Georgie Campbell, Speedwell has a fantastic record at Novice and it looks set to continue at Intermediate.
Jesse Campbell and Hickstead Musterd won section M to provide the best result for Team Campbell, who currently seem to be on fire. Wishing Jesse the best of luck that this run continues with is run at Kentucky five star in a few weeks’ time. Jack Pinkney and Billy Hennessy followed up there second place at Tweseldown with second in this section at South of England, what great consistency. Mrs Campbell then slotted into third place on another intermediate first timer, with Global Halifax owned by loyal supporter Diana Morrish. Unfortunately Georgie Wood and Greenlanes Hudson sustained a nasty fall in this section, although I can report that Hudson is absolutely fine and Georgie is ok just a bit battered and bruised.
A select few competed in the Open Intermediate Under 21 class, which was won by Polly Muirhead and Penhill Touch of Class. Polly remarked that it was the perfect start to the season with Victor, who completed a very speedy cross country round! Second place went to Saffie Osborne and Lakantus, with Saffie thanking Oaksey House for getting her back onboard after 4 months off after a nasty racing injury, but also for helping her be fitter and stronger than before. Third place Jemma Stratton had a typical eventing day of mixed fortunes, after leading the dressage and clear showjumping rounds with both horses. Global H had steady round cross country round to finish third, while the high was compliment with the low of a rider fall later in the course on Global Smart Choice.
Sophie Jenman and Quantanamo Z headed the open novice with a great score of 23.5 with Sophie commenting that he is on flying form, Quantanamo Z is for sale so if you are interested, please contact Sophie directly. The open novice contained some new combinations, with an exciting pair to watch being Royal Roxey the former four star ride of Tom McEwen and Jonelle Price now being ridden by super talented Mollie Summerland.
Isabelle Cooke was a busy lady in the Novice U18 with 3 rides in the top 6, with a 2nd, 3rd and 6th causing the comment of “such a good weekend with all the horses out at South of England”. However the section winner was Hattie Lloyd Townshend and Boris VII with a fantastic dressage of 24.
Eventing Worldwide favourite Alice Dunsdon and Espoir Landis topped Novice section G. With the other Novice winners being Kentucky Bound Kevin McNab on Cute Girl and Gemma Tattersall with Johan-Some.