Report by Vera Porter.
This was the 33rd running of Poplar Park, organised by Mr J I Hardwick & Mr A Hardwick, and run in support of The Woodbridge Injured Soldiers Fund, The East Anglian Air Ambulance & Riding for the Disabled (Hollesly Branch).
As the only BE venue in Suffolk it is well supported by local riders, and therefore had a good turnout of competitors. A new surface to the showjumping warm up was praised by many of the riders, and changes to the cross country course were also well received. Phoebe Buckley said she “thought the changes were fantastic, with good questions that were fair,” whilst Anthony Clark said “the course ran better than last year, with some testing skinnies in the 90.
Poplar Park runs a full spectrum of BE classes from BE80(T) through to Advanced Intermediate.
Laura Collett paid her first visit to the venue with Pamero 4, who won Intermediate Section L with a dressage of 26.1 and followed it up with a double clear, a horse she describes as amazing to ride cross country. Laura was also fifth with Cooley Again in Section L. Of the event Laura commented: “Having never been to Poplar Park before it was a lovely event, we will definitely be coming back! Amazing ground and a great XC track.”
Another international rider scoring a win was Oliver Townend and Cillnabradden Evo who won the Advanced Intermediate on a score of 18.8. Oliver was also second in the section with Cooley Master Class, who also scored a sub-20 dressage.
A host of grassroots riders who will be competing in the Mitsubishi Motors Cup at Badminton in May got their preparations for the big event off to a flying start with wins at their first event of the year. BE90 finalist Emily Uden and Campion Capella won BE90 Section B, James Pratt and Churchside Reflection won BE90 Section C whilst Thomas Cousillas won BE100 section H with Bookhamlodge Spring Edition. Sophie Forbes and Tricky Johnnie who will be contesting the BE100 final in May won in BE100 Section I.
Saturday Results: BE90 Sec A Matilda Dawson, Thunder III; BE90 Sec B Emily Uden, Campion Capella; BE90 Sec C James Pratt, Churchside Reflection; BE90 Open Sec D Michelle Chandler, Willows Santana Classic; BE80 Sec E Jodie Howie, Rickamore Monty; BE80 Sec F Sally Hayes, Chin Chico B; BE80 Sec G
Abi Jacobs, Barney XIII.
Sunday Results: BE100 Sec H Thomas Cousillas, Bookhamlodge Spring Edition; BE100 Sec I Sophie Forbes, Tricky Johnie; BE100 Sec J Esther Anderson , Eldorado II; BE100 U18 Sec K Alice Hallows Newferry Irish Mist; Open Intermediate Sec L Laura Collett, Pamero 4; Intermediate Sec M Grace Taylor, Coogee Storm; Advanced Intermediate Sec N Oliver Townend, Cillnabradden Evo; Novice Sec O Lucy Jackson, Superstition II; Open Novice Sec P Mary Edmundson, Dinky III.
All in all this was a successful event on beautiful managed ground with friendly officials from the army of volunteers.
Photographs courtesy of Lorraine Porter