New look GP to be trialled at Olympia

Tuesday, November 13

Inagural President's Commendation winners presented

At yesterday’s Regional Representatives Meeting, where all our regional volunteer committee members gather annually, we were delighted to welcome BD President Jennie Loriston-Clarke along to make three very special presentations. A new award was launched earlier in the year help mark our 20th anniversary celebrations in the form of the President’s Commendation. We asked for nominations for individuals who show ‘undoubted and unequivocal excellence’ in the dressage community. The could be long term voluntary service, selfless acts, innovation, dedication – just those truly special individuals who go the extra mile. The panel reviewed this year’s nominations and settled on three very worthy recipients;   Alicia Anderson who has given over to decades of her time to British Dressage as an organiser, judge and regional volunteer. She’s been instrumental in shaping and developing the South West Region both as Judges Rep and Chairman. Hard working, dedication and determined are all words regularly mentioned in her citation and it’s these attributes which make her a President’s Commendation winner. Steve Arnett wears many hats in the Wales region; judge, UKCC Level 3 Coach, Youth Assessor, mentor, volunteer, committee member and para trainer – he’s involved at every level, every ability, every chance he can. At the end of 2018, he will complete is eight year tenue as Chairman of the region and in that time he’s helped the membership to prosper both in numbers, ability and opportunity and will leave behind a great legacy. He has a life time of experience and knowledge which he willing gives back and asks nothing in return, making him a truly ‘lovely man’. Jill Day is one of dressage’s most unassuming stars and has been the driving force behind modernising and consolidating our coaching programme for over a decade. Her involvement in coaching, mentoring and inspiring has spanned a great many more years and few BD Youth riders have gone up the grades without some sort of inspirational impact from Jill. She’s respected, driven and dedicated and has worked tirelessly to bring about a programme which is now the envy of others.   Board Director Julie Frizzell, who helped bring the new award to fruition, was there to see the inaugural presentations. There’s nothing greater than seeing a reward as remarkable as the President’s Commendation go to three inspirational members of the British Dressage community. To see the award come to life and see it go to exactly the calibre of people we’d hoped for is really gratifying,” Julie commented. “Thanks to everyone who helped bring the award to reality and Alicia, Steve and Jill may have their place in history as our first winners but I’m looking forward to seeing the roll of honour build into a group of truly remarkable individuals who I’m humbled and honoured to work with and call my peers.”

Friday, November 9

Convention countdown...

Tomorrow (Saturday 10 November) marks the start of our two week countdown to this year’s British Dressage National Convention, 24 – 25 November at Hartpury College in Gloucestershire. Held in association with Harrison Clark Rickerby, this year’s showcase training event will look at dressage with ’20:20 vision’ and our three international rider hosts have now confirmed their demo pupils and horses. 2018 WEG team bronze medallist Emile Faurie will be looking at both ends of the dressage spectrum in his sessions each day. He’ll start with Novice and the horse in the spotlight will be five year old Iwan (Charmeur x Sir Oldenburg), owned by Sara Lucas and ridden by Nikki Barker and then progress through Elementary and Medium. It’ll be the turn of Emile’s stable jockey, Tom Goode to ride two exciting prospects, five year old Sakira (San Amour x Rubinstein), owned by Eva Lin Black and then Langley (L’Espoir x Rimini), owned by Hof Kasselmann who Tom piloted to second place in this year’s TopSpec Medium Gold Championships. At the end of each day, we finish with Grand Prix. Saturday will focus on the straight test and how the level has evolved and Emile will be using Tom and Dior III, a ten year old owned by Sam Geddes and himself, to demonstrate. On Sunday, the focus turns to Freestyle and the test which gave rise to the ‘dancing horses’ and Emile will be in the saddle himself for this session with his latest star, Hof Kasslemann’s Café’s Caletta (Café au Lait x Calato) who is on the verge of making her competitive debut at Grand Prix. This is a horse Emile has high hopes for so the Convention is a great place to witness a star in the making and the techniques used by one of the world’s top producers. Gareth Hughes, himself a European and WEG team medallist, will look at the steps towards Grand Prix, Advanced Medium and Small Tour, Prix St Georges and Inter I. Gareth has enlisted the help of wife Rebecca and Alison Croft’s Danone II sired Tantoni Dallagio and having competed at the Nationals in both the Elementary and Medium Championships this September, the ten year old will be out campaigning at Advanced Medium this winter. Gareth takes to the saddle for Inter I where he’ll ride KK Dominant, a nine year old Diamond Hit x Rubin Royal stallion he’s started riding for the Kroll family and they’re quickly making a mark together. And for Inter I, he’s going to give us all a treat by bringing the expressive mare, Classic Briolinca, owned by the Hughes with Julia Hornig. On Saturday there will be a dedicated para dressage session and we’re delighted to have secured the FEI world number on ranked rider and double WEG gold medallist Sophie Wells to explain all. As a rider, she’s hit the top and managed to stay there with an exciting string of home produced horses but she’s making a name for herself as a highly respected trainer too. Star pupils Izzy Palmer (Grade IV) and Georgia Wilson (Grade II), members of the World Class Podium Potential and Excel Talent programmes respectively, will be there to help Sophie explain the requirements for both riders and trainers to help para riders discover their ability and achieve their potential. Woven throughout all the sessions will be expert opinion form FEI 4* judge Peter Storr and Dr Rachel Murray who will give their view on how their roles impact on the athletes, both equine and human and the part that each team component; rider, trainer, judge and support plays into getting a combination to their peak performance levels in training and in the arena. A coach may explain how to ride a movement, a judge will explain what’s needed to make a six for that movement turn into a seven while sport science support will ensure that repetition of that movement won’t be harmful to the horse. All components combining for a happy, healthy athlete. With such a world class line up of presenters, riders and horse power, it promises to be an inspiring and thought provoking weekend, whatever your interest in dressage. We're delighted to offer BD and BHS members the opportunity to buy discounted tickets for this year's event, take a look at the list below to choose your ticket. As a special 20th anniversary gift, we're also offering all U25s an amazing 20% discount, to make the most of this please call the office on 02476 698833 to verify age and book over the phone. Ticket prices: Day ticket BD Member - £50 Weekend ticket BD Member - £80 Day ticket BHS Member - £52 Weekend ticket BHS Member - £84 Day ticket non Member - £55 Weekend ticket non Member - £90 Young person (U25) day ticket - £40 Young person (U25) weekend ticket - £72 To get your tickets head to the BD online ticket page . Alternatively, you can book over the phone with our Training and Education team on 02476 698831 or 02476 698833.
Tuesday, November 6

Young Professional Programme welcomes second cohort

The class of 2018/19 has been inducted by British Equestrian Federation (BEF) on to the Young Professional Programme, funded by Sport England. The 12-month programme, launched in 2017, aims is to help young riders build a wider skill-set to support their personal and career development, enabling them to thrive and earn a living in the equestrian industry and transition out of the youth development pathway. The programme is delivered in collaboration with British Dressage, British Eventing and British Showjumping and features a series of interactive workshops, with the athletes benefiting from the expertise of business mentors from their sport and high profile speakers covering a range of topics. The first interactive workshop was held at Stoneleigh Park on 29 October where the inducted athletes met their mentors as well as dressage rider, Amy Schiessl, who was part of the first group of Young Professionals 2017-18, who explained how the programme had helped shape the way she now runs her business. Head of Performance Pathways at the BEF, David Hamer commented: “An overarching theme with young athletes starting up an equestrian business is their love of horses and horse sport. However, to be able to earn a living requires not only the knowledge of the financial and legal aspects of a running a business, it also requires a personal skill set to deal with the many challenges they will encounter with their business day-to-day. This series of workshops are designed to help them to run a business and also gain skills that will also help their overall personal and professional development”. After a brief introduction to the programme by David Hamer, the athletes had a keynote presentation from Kirsty Henshaw. Kirsty was the youngest entrepreneur at 23 years-old to receive investment from the BBC Dragons Den when she appeared on the show in 2010 with her range of healthy and free-from ice creams. Kirsty described her journey form starting in her kitchen to developing her business to where today it turns over £6m and is valued at over £8m. Kirsty commented; "Whilst the business has evolved, the aim and vision of the company remain unchanged. I have learned from my mistakes and seized opportunities as they arose. Starting a business is both challenging and exciting, but the hard work will pay off if you stick with it and believe in what you do”. Professor Tony Ghaye and Jane Mawdlsey from the English Institute of Sport then set the scene for the programme in the afternoon workshop with the first personal development planning session. Flora Young, an eventer selected on to the programme said: “When I saw the programme advertised online I thought it was something different to a lot of other programmes that were on offer. There’s so much concentration on the riding side but there is not so much offered on how to operate a business in the equestrian industry. This programme gives me a great opportunity to learn more. “It was really interesting meeting people from different disciplines who I wouldn’t have usually met and who are in a similar position to me. We got to listen to some great speakers and meet our mentors and I can’t wait for the next workshop.” The BEF Young Professional Programme includes eight workshops in total, running until summer 2019. Young Professionals selected on to the programme are as followed by discipline: Dressage: Joseph Bright, Laura Woodcock, Lucy Amy, Megan Roberts, Nathan Aston, Victoria Maw Eventing: Charlotte East, Dickon Reader, Flora Young, Freddie Best, Greta Mason, Laura Schroter, Lucy Robinson, Ollie Martin Showjumping: Ellen McPherson
Tuesday, November 6

Top talent at Nettex TGCA Championships

The Nettex TGCA Associated Championships, which took place at Solihull Riding Club last weekend (4 November 2018), truly celebrated what this popular and versatile breed has to offer within the dressage arena. Many of the UK’s top dressage cobs converged at the West Midlands venue, some travelling from as far as Scotland, to vie for the ten titles up for grabs. Sensible, yet active and with a super work ethic, gypsy cobs make fantastic dressage partners and this was evidenced throughout the day. Three combinations impressively won two championship titles apiece. Danielle Rhodes who travelled from Bruton in Somerset was unbeatable in the pure-bred divisions of the Elementary and Medium with Denise Kersley’s delightful black tobiano Tiger Tim (pictured above left). Their score of 71.68% gave them a five percent lead in the Elementary and they achieved 68.67% for their Medium. Thirteen-year-old Tim is by Denise’s stallion Bashful Bobby Dazzler who she bought directly from travellers. Tim, himself a TGCA licenced stallion, has had an illustrious career so far, proving that he can hold his own against the archetypal dressage horses. He won the Novice Restricted title at the 2013 National Championships with his former rider Alysia Matravers, and has been ridden to much success with Danielle since. Their achievements include Elementary Silver victory at the Mount Ballan Summer Regionals earlier this year. In the part-bred Elementary and Medium, it was Becky Jackman-Smith from Hereford who took the honours with her piebald 13-year-old, Black Diamond II (pictured above right). The handsome gelding was piloted by Becky to two solid tests earning 67.65% and 63.52% respectively. Competing together since 2012, highlights of their career include appearances at the Petplan Equine Area Festival Finals at Hartpury in both 2015 and 2016. In the close fought part-bred divisions of the Preliminary and Novice, Tonya Ellis from Hertfordshire had the winning edge with Michele Cooper’s 11-year-old gelding Sammy IV (pictured right). The pair was awarded plus-68% scores to take both titles in only their second season of affiliated competition. Enjoying a very good 2018, they were fifth in the Novice at the Nettex CHAPS Associated Championships in September, and their scores have been building since. Tonya and ‘Fluffy’, as the handsome piebald is known, have a wealth of experience in the show ring. They’ve competed at the Royal International and the Horse of the Year Show where they were placed eighth. Described as ‘kind and generous’, Fluffy really does symbolize all the fabulous qualities of the breed. The highest score of the day was awarded to young Staffordshire rider Leanne Bailey who claimed the Preliminary for pure-breds by a more than two percent margin. Partnered by Moira Johnston’s 10-year-old black tobiano mare Fairytale III (by Vines Magpie), who’s returned to competition following a year out, she achieved 71.87%. Leanne took to LB Equine Facebook to say, “She’s done it again! After having horrible laminitis and meaning she had to have the whole of 2017 off, she’s come back in 2018 with a bang! Winning her class with 71.87% at the TGCA Championships. A huge thank you to her wonderful owners for letting me have the ride.” British Dressage thanks the team at Solihull RC for a successful Championship event as well as title sponsor Nettex for their generous support of the Associated Championship series. Congratulations to all the winners and to everyone who took part. The Champions: I ntro for pure-breds Ema Bayliss and Hit The Road Jack, 63.69% Intro for part-breds Katherine Lansdown and Sacha, 68.03% Preliminary for pure-breds Leanne Bailey and Fairytale III, 71.87% Preliminary for part-breds Tonya Ellis and Sammy IV, 68.64% Novice for pure-breds Anneleise Brown and The Wolf, 69.27% Novice for part-breds Tonya Ellis and Sammy IV, 68.86% Elementary for pure-breds Danielle Rhodes and Tiger Tim, 71.68% Elementary for part-breds Becky Jackman-Smith and Black Diamond II, 67.65% Medium for pure-breds Danielle Rhodes and Tiger Tim, 68.67% Medium for part-breds Becky Jackman-Smith and Black Diamond II, 63.52% For full results click here .
Tuesday, November 6

Europe’s best line up in Lyon

The hunt for elusive FEI Dressage World Cup points continued last week with the second leg of the Western European League series taking place at Equita Longines in Lyon, France. The bright lights of Lyon draw in the biggest names in dressage year on year with the alluring chance to score well and rise up the rankings on the World Cup qualification table. Britain’s sole representative, Hayley Watson-Greaves, put up a strong fight with her experienced campaigner Rubins Nite on her second appearance at this show. In the Grand Prix, the duo scored 70.63% for ninth place before going on to improve on their day one performance in the Freestyle test earning an impressive 77.35% and fifth position. Hayley and ‘Squeaks’ thrilled the judges with their brand new freestyle floorplan, which has a potential degree of difficult mark of 9.95 – 10. Packed with exciting combinations and high quality work, the effort paid off with a score that’s only 0.2% off their FEI Grand Prix Freestyle personal best. World Champion Isabell Werth was the winner of both classes in Lyon on board the enigmatic Emilio, whilst Patrick Kittel took home two runner up accolades with Elena Knyaginicheva’s black stallion Delatio, a former ride of Emile Faurie now based with the Swedish rider to be sold. The FEI World Cup circus now moves on to Stuttgart, Germany in two weeks’ time where the battle for points will continue. Results Grand Prix 1st Isabell Werth with Emilio, 75.32% (GER) 9th Hayley Watson-Greaves with Rubins Nite, 70.63% (GBR) Grand Prix Kur to Music 1st Isabell Werth with Emilio, 84.41% (GER) 5th Hayley Watson-Greaves with Rubins Nite, 77.35% (GBR) For full results click here . 
Tuesday, November 6

Charlotte targets Florentina at Liverpool

Dressage stars will light up the Theraplate UK Liverpool International Horse Show stage at the iconic Echo Arena on the opening night of the equestrian and family extravaganza. Spectators will witness some of the country’s leading names including the legendary Charlotte Dujardin as they compete in the Equitop Myoplast sponsored Inter 1 Freestyle Dressage to Music. Charlotte will be bringing the super-talented, grey mare Florentina VI to compete in the magical atmosphere on the opening night. The partnership has been in fantastic form this year winning both the Prix St Georges and Inter 1 Freestyle Small Tour at Bolesworth International in June. And that’s not all, dressage maestro Carl Hester will join Charlotte for a meet and greet session, allowing fans to get close up and personal with the duo during rider signings. Said Charlotte: “Having competed at Liverpool International last year it is great to be returning and to partner Florentina in such an electric arena will be fantastic.” Other leading names on the start list include the multi-garlanded Sophie Wells Paralympic, World and European Gold Medallist, Nicky Barker and Lisa Marriott, to name just a few who will be riding at their best to take the coveted title. Said Theraplate UK Liverpool International Horse Show, President, Nina Barbour: “We are delighted to have Carl and Charlotte returning to the show and to be hosting top class dressage once again. “We can always rely on Charlotte to provide a masterclass when it comes to competition riding. “The sport of dressage has grown beyond recognition and we are looking forward to watching some of the most talented and up and coming dressage horses in the country compete. “The Echo Arena is a fantastic venue and there will certainly be plenty of atmosphere to give the crowd a real taste of the very best dressage.” As well as dressage on the opening night, December 28, for those visitors making it a New Year to remember they can look forward to a showjumping feast on New Year’s Eve, December 31, with the prestigious Theraplate UK Grand Prix one of the highlights, when leading names will battle it out to take top honours. Hospitality at The Liverpool International Horse Show is second to none and makes a fantastic present for great friends and family. Whether on the purpose-built platform at the head of the arena or in one of the VIP boxes – you won’t be disappointed. This year’s Liverpool International Horse Show will see a host of leading names in action from December 28 to 31, at The Echo Arena on Liverpool’s iconic waterfront. For further information and to book tickets visit www.liverpoolhorseshow.com To reserve VIP Hospitality tickets on the purpose-built stage at the head of the arena please contact Hospitality Manager, Melanie Simm on 01829 307676.  
Tuesday, November 6

Talent shines through at MyQuest Championships

Bigger and better than ever, the Kent & Masters My Quest Championships kick started the bumper grass roots weekend at Bury Farm with a bang last weekend (Friday 26 October). With classes full to the brim, all competitors had to be in their best form to have a shot at the prestigious titles and amazing prizes. Taking home the first title in the Open classes was Staffordshire based rider Francesca Smith (26) who stormed to victory in the Intro Championships with her own Future Enigma. Francesca (pictured) and the elegant five-year-old Irish Sports Horse (Future Gravitas x Hand In Glove XX) achieved 70.51% for their test to put them on the top step of the podium ahead of Becky Howells with Brooms Ottoman and Samantha Ireson with Kylemore Abbey Lara. Bred by Future Sport Horses, ‘Alfie’ has overcome adversity to win at the Championships for owner Francesca who nearly lost him as a two-year-old through a tendon sheath infection. Three years later, their strong partnership and Francesca’s dedication to her lovely horse was evident in their test and the future certainly looks bright for the talented duo. A super 68.85% was the score for Suzanna Smith and In The Limelight 1 who snatched the Open Prelim Championship win by two marks. In The Limelight 1, a home-bred nine-year-old by T Movistar, and Suzanne saved their best performance for the Championships, improving on their South West Quest Regional Final mark by no less than two percent! Suzanne, an RSPCA inspector and mother to 12-year-old twin boys, was thrilled to be awarded a wild card to the Championships and without doubt capitalized on the opportunity. In the Open Novice Championships, Amanda Hansen and False Alibi impressed the judges panel consisting of Jane Ellis, Joyce Head and Sue Staines to earn 68.97% and the winner’s spoils. In only their first season of British Dressage competition together, Amanda and schoolmaster ‘Al’ have enjoyed a brilliant year of competition culminating in a win at the MyQuest Championships and an appearance at the Nettex Veteran Associated Championships. In the under 21 categories, the stars of the future shone in three highly competitive classes. Thirteen-year-old Tegan Crook turned heads in the Intro C Championships with both her great riding and eye-catching choice of partner, her own 17.2hh palomino Koko, a horse she’s backed and produced from day one. The judges awarded their test a fantastic 69.49% which left the duo half a mark ahead of deserved runner-up Fi Grabham with her own charming Welsh pony Waxwing Pocket Money. Another 13-year-old to taste success was Bristol-based teen Amelia Hendy, who strolled to victory in the Prelim U21 Championship earning the highest score of the show en route with her own Coedfryn Secret Surprise. Linda Waller, Jane Tolley and Martyne Galland awarded Amelia with 71.45%, enough to earn her the Gill Drew trophy as well as the coveted Championship title and prizes. A keen member of the Beaufort Hunt Pony Club and Beaufort Belles Quest team, Amelia has retrained her part-bred Hanoverian ex-eventer ‘Magic’ for dressage with the help of trainer Beth Hobbs. The talented duo contributed two 70% scores to the Beaufort Belles over the weekend in the Team Quest Championships to complete their Quest campaign in style. At their first Quest Championships, Evie Hardwick and six-year-old Roxlan Jasper were successful in the Novice U21 class; they earned 70.51% to top the field as the sole plus-70% score. Hailing from North Yorkshire, 21-year-old Evie purchased her winning horse 18 months ago and has been training the attractive dun with the help of Kate Appleyard. Speaking on her Facebook page Evie said, “Wow! What a long couple of days! A five-hour journey to Bury Farm for the My Quest Novice Championships, a very long day waiting to do my test at 4:51 this evening, many a cup of tea and a very fidgety fed up pony wanting his field! It was well worth the wait, after a tense warm up which put my nerves up a notch, Jasper went and performed like the absolute star he is in the N30 to WIN with 70.51%. This boy really shines, proud of his attitude is an understatement, I’ve never known a horse like him.” Congratulations to all who took part in the Kent & Masters My Quest Championships. Thanks go to generous sponsors Kent & Masters and to host venue Bury Farm. Winners MQ Open Intro Francesca Smith with Future Enigma, 70.51% MQ Open Prelim Suzanne Smith with In The Limelight 1, 68.85% MQ Open Novice Amanda Hansen with False Alibi, 68.97% MQ Intro U21 Tegan Crook with Koko, 69.49% MQ Prelim U21 Amelia Hendy with Coedfryn Secret Surprise, 71.54% MQ Novice U21 Evie Hardwick with Roxlan Jasper, 70.51% For full results click here .
Monday, November 5

It’s all Chicks and Divas at the Team Quest finale

The leading Team Quest riders gathered for the fifth annual Kent & Masters Quest Championships at the end of October for two days of hot competition which warmed the chilly conditions at Bury Farm, the hosts for the weekend.  North West team the Cheshire Chicks have been to all but one of the five Quest Championships so far and this year managed to go one better than their 2017 finish to take the Open title. Original team members Isobell Maughan and the British bred Cracking Opposition returned again to the Buckinghamshire venue alongside team mates Shona Rooney (Tobago Bay) and mother/daughter duo Corrie and Ciara Mclellan sharing Ballastra van de Cumul. After day one, fine performances from all four team members gave them a clear advantage of nearly five and a half points over nearest rivals, Yorkshire’s Could B Rounder quartet of Samantha Duncan, Hannah Jolliffe, Amanda Snowden and Stephanie Thomson with the Norfolk Centreliners hot on their heels in third. On Saturday night as a distraction of second day nerves, the Questers were treated to a great FEI Freestyle Pick Your Own competition, judged by List 1 trio Carole Thornton, Anita Darken and Debbie Wardle. This was a new format this year and tests ranged to the Junior Freestyle as chosen by 16 year old Jessica Mcconkey who rode her Junior European Championship Freestyle with Lady Gaga II up to Grand Prix – so the audience could see a range of tests at the upper levels. Louise Bell got the evening off to a start with a quick demo of the movements they were likely to see before Jessica got the competition underway. It was Gareth Hughes who took the top honours eventually with the Kroll family’s gorgeous KK Dominant who was doing his firs Inter I Freestyle under lights. It was a polished performance which earned 74.21%, just ahead of Lousie Bell and Into the Blue who scored 73.46% with their Grand Prix. Completing the podium were past winners Joanna Thurman-Baker and Highcliffe Apollo who debuted their Grand Prix Freestyle for 73.17%. Fourth placed Nathalie Kayal is worthy of a mention for entering into the Quest Halloween spirit by performing with a spooky skeleton face painted on! A chilly Sunday morning greeted everyone for the final day of competition with all team members riding at their chosen level for a second time but this time with extra pressure. Would the Cheshire Chicks hold their advantage? Could a team make a late surge up the leader board? One thing was certain, it’d go down to the wire. All four Cheshire Chicks again rose to the challenge and certainly didn’t let any nerves show (if there were any!) as they all bettered their previous day scores – both Ciara and Shona broke the 71% barrier in Prelim 14 to widen the gap. Team Captain and main motivator Janet Maughan, mum of Isabelle, spurred them on by saying she wanted to bring a rug home having missed out last year so the incentive was laid out. Behind them, things didn’t quite go to plan for the Could B Rounder crew and valuable marks were lost, opening the door for the Norfolk Centreliners to seize a podium place. Trained by Nerys Leer, the quartet of Natasha Reynolds, Kerry Lake, Joanna Mclean and Connor Sharpe fought off a late charge from the Too Cool to School team from Carmarthenshire who rose from eighth after day one to third with two of their riders bettering their previous scores by about 5%. It was very close though; just 0.09% separated the two! So after five years of trying, Quackers, the Cheshire Chicks’ mascot, finally got to stand atop the Team Quest podium! In the U21 battle, it was the familiar name of Connor Sharpe who led the way with his Dressage Divas. Connor rode Tomrilland Billy as did team member Kate Joyce and they dominated the Intro classes with Connor taking the honours on Saturday, Kate on Sunday. The third member Megan Maclean partnered Cherrymount Rainbow and after a nervy start on Saturday for 61.74%, they brought their A game on Sunday and rode their best ever Intro test together to score 69.86% which clinched gold for the team by nearly 10% (pictured below). After Saturday’s action, The Hornettes lay second with Daisy, Ottille and Hettie-Mae Horn all scoring well but they just couldn’t fend off the challenge from the Southern challengers, The Pocket Rockets who all had outstanding second rides to rise from ninth to runners up spot. Fi Grabham turned things around with her Intro performance, going 70%+ on Sunday, as did Tia Holland in the Prelim while Edward Daniell and Sophie Moss both scored over 68% in the final Novice. The Derbyshire Young Riders, Tom and Lottie Dennett, Megan Lewcock and Jennifer Mottershead kept a firm grasp of third spot throughout and were all exceptionally consistent through their eight tests with scores between 66 and 69%. Well done to all our teams – you really make the weekend a special one! A massive thank you to our generous sponsors Kent & Masters who’ve got right behind the competition from the onset and we loved seeing you all in your fabulous saddle cloths – may they bring you much luck. And a final thanks to the team at Bury Farm who make it all work – there were a few issues which were managed and plans and ideas are already flowing for 2019. So, there’s a break of just five weeks and then we’re off and running with qualification for the 2019 regionals! Best of luck everyone…Bury Farm here we come! Full results – click here Pictures c www.kevinsparrow.co.uk 
Monday, November 5

Team Faurie on form at Equestrian Surfaces High Profile Show

Emile Faurie and his team enjoyed a highly successful outing to last week’s Equestrian Surfaces High Profile Show at Vale View in Leicestershire (1 – 3 November 2018), dominating the top level classes. In Friday’s Grand Prix, Tom Goode was the one to beat aboard Sam Geddes’ exciting young stallion Dior III (pictured). Tom, who works alongside Emile at his Oxfordshire base, and the striking Gribaldi-sired chestnut earned a score of 72.90% for their high quality and expressive work. The talented 10-year-old made his Grand Prix debut at Hunters Equestrian in March 2017, scoring 74.30%, and very much looks to have a bright future ahead of him. Next stop for Tom will be the British Dressage National Convention where we can look forward to him and Dior working as a demo combination with Emile, one of the five distinguished hosts. There was little between Grand Prix second and third, with Georgia Stokes and Talented Mr Ripley and Steph Croxford with Mr Hyde completing the top three on very good scores of 69.20% and 69.07% respectively. Emile meanwhile was thrilled with his young mare Café’s Caletta with whom he won the Inter II on the horse’s debut at the level. The pair was awarded a score just shy of 74% from judges Steph Cooper (C), Jane Peberdy (H) and Claire Ballantyne (B). The German-bred nine-year-old is proving to be an exciting prospect for her rider, as was shown by their super performance in the Dressage Future Elite Championship at the Horse of the Year Show last month. “We had a really good yard outing to Vale View High Profile show this week,” said Emile on Facebook . “Hof Kasselmann’s Café’s Caletta and I won the Inter II at our first attempt at this level with 74% and Tom rode my own and Sam Geddes’ Dior to victory in the Grand Prix with 72.9%.” At the Small Tour levels, Sarah Rao (20) and Waldessarini had the winning edge in both Thursday’s Magic Prix St Georges (70.39%) and Friday’s Superflex Inter I (71.58%). Sarah, who is based in Knutsford, Cheshire with Sarah Higgins and Alex Hua Tian at Cloud Strider Equestrian, has amassed some good results with the Wolkentanz II-sired 14-year-old who’s affectionately known as Foxy. They were third in the Magic PSG at the NAF Five Star Winter Championships earlier this year and just missed the top ten in the Fairfax Saddles PSG at the LeMieux National Championships. It was certainly a case of youth coming to the fore at Small Tour as two further combinations to enjoy success were Julia Giner (20) and Rebecca Swain (18). Julia and her 18.1hh nine-year-old, Carbo, won Friday’s Magic Prix St Georges with 71.58%. Then, Rebecca Swain (18) and the athletic chestnut Bon Jovi (UB40 x Krack C) took Saturday’s Magic Prix St Georges with a super 72.30%. Rebecca bought Bon Jovi, a former ride of Dutch star Diederik Van Silfhout, in 2017 and they’re certainly ones to watch for the future. The winners: Thursday Class 1: Medium 75 – Alex Hua Tian with Don Geniro, 69.19% Class 2: Charles Owen Advanced Medium – Alex Hua Tian with Don Geniro, 71.92% Class 3: Magic Prix St Georges – Sarah Rao with Waldessarini, 70.39% Class 4: Superflex Intermediate I – Nikki Barker with Durable, 72.19% Class 5: Intermediate II – Emile Faurie with Café’s Caletta, 73.90% Friday Class 6: Medium 76 – Beth Bainbridge with Diggo, 68.48% Class 7: Charles Owen Advanced Medium – Kate Cowell with Firmino, 72.57% Class 8: Pony Team Test – Isobel Lickley with Mister Snowman, 69.49% Class 9: Magic Prix St Georges – Julia Giner with Carbo, 71.58% Class 10: Superflex Intermediate I – Sarah Rao with Waldessarini, 71.58% Class 11: Grand Prix – Tom Goode with Dior III, 72.90% Saturday Class 12: Medium 75 – Louise Davison with Freddie Mercury, 69.59% Class 13: Charles Owen Advanced Medium – Alex Hua Tian with Don Geniro, 69.87% Class 14: Pony Individual Test – Olivia Whitelaw with Brouwershaven’s Viceroy, 70.61% Class 15: Magic Prix St Georges – Rebecca Swain with Bon Jovi, 72.30% Class 16: Spillers Medium Freestyle – Lavinia Johnson with Dublin, 71.50% Class 17: Nupafeed Advanced Medium Freestyle – Lavinia Johnson with Dublin, 71.00% Class 18: Prix St Georges Freestyle – Katie Johnston with After Midnight, 68.38% For full results click here .
Thursday, November 1

Forces Equine Associated Championships

The Forces Equine Associated Championships saw several close battles play out at Moreton Morrell EC on Sunday 21 October. Designed for riders in HM Forces, Government Services, Public Services and their dependents, the Championships continue to grow in success year on year with the support of the dedicated team at Forces Equine. Charlotte Bagshaw made her journey from Leeds count as she took home two wins with her own Bunny Boy, a 15-year-old Irish bred gelding. Two sublime tests in the Introductory and Preliminary Championships saw the perfectly matched pair earn 73.70% and 71.92% for their efforts. Charlotte, a student at Leeds Beckett University, spoke to British Dressage about her win: “Me, Bunny and my mum and dad had a wonderful time, we have never attended the Forces Equine Associated Championships before! Debi and all the competitors made us feel incredibly welcome. It is both mine and Bunny Boy's first year doing BD dressage so both me and my fantastic instructor - Shirley Pickard - were thrilled with our percentages which were in the 70's.” Also leaving the show as a dual winner was Lisa Sterrow, hailing from Carterton in Oxfordshire. Proving tough to beat, Lisa and Erin Angel’s piebald gelding Montreal Skyline won both the Novice and Elementary Championships in style with 73.65% and 69.46%. This is the second Associated Championship experience of the year for Lisa who recently challenged at the Nettex CHAPS Associated Championship with her Forces Equine Champion ride. Inspector Lesley Wheatley of Northumbria Police (pictured) tasted victory in the Medium 75 Championship with her own Furst Lazlo. Lesley and her seven-year-old son of Furst Nymphenburg have enjoyed a great season of BD competition, including competing at the Rockrose Summer Regional Championships. Congratulations to all riders who took part in this unique Championships, thanks go to Forces Equine and to Wayne Rodwell and his team at Moreton Morrell College for another successful Championships. Winners Introductory B Charlotte Bagshaw with Bunny Boy, 73.70% Preliminary 18 Charlotte Bagshaw with Bunny Boy, 71.92% Novice 30 Lisa Sterrow with Montreal Skyline, 73.65% Elementary 50 Lisa Sterrow with Montreal Skyline, 69.46% Medium 75 Lesley Wheatley with Furst Lazlo, 65.81% For full results click here .
Tuesday, October 30

In memoriam: John Mead

It is with great sadness that British Dressage has learned of the passing of BD List 1 and FEI Judge John Mead at the age of 86, only weeks after the passing of his wife, Cath. John enjoyed a successful career in the motor industry but it was in the equestrian world that he preferred to spend his 'downtime'. He always owned horses including Giovanni who was partnered to success by Ferdi Eilberg, and had an interest in breeding too. Pursuing his passion for dressage he commenced his judge training in the early 1980s, progressing up the ranks to List 1 and ultimately FEI status. BD Judges Director Peter Storr paid tribute: "John was a highly respected man within the judging community and dressage as a whole. His contribution to dressage over the years, both here in Great Britain and throughout the world has been immense and he'll be fondly remembered by so many for his wisdom, generosity and fairness. He was always approachable and always encouraging. We have lost an excellent judge and a dear friend. Our prayers are with his family at this sad time." Fellow judge Sally Lidsey officiated alongside John on many occasions including at the iconic Goodwood international in 1986. "We trained at the same time. John was always reliable, and a modest, very approachable man," she said. "He experienced dressage as an owner too, and although he didn't compete, he continued to ride all his life." All at British Dressage offer their sincere condolences to John's family and friends. He will be greatly missed by so many in the sport. A Requiem Mass for John will be held on Thursday, 8 November 2018 at 2.30pm at Holy Cross RC Church, Signal Hayes Road, Walmley, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands B76 2RS.
Tuesday, October 30

App appeal with BD and Dressage TestPro

It’s finally here! British Dressage is proud to launch the digital app a number of riders and trainers have been waiting for. We’ve teamed up with Lion Dogs, creators of the Dressage TestPro app series, to bring you all our tests from Intro to Advanced on your mobile device for the most advanced test learning experience available. As well as the convenience of having your tests easily accessible without Wi-Fi or 4G connection, the BD Dressage TestPro app actively helps you learn your test – whatever style suits you. You can listen, follow or draw your way around your chosen test to get to grips with your test route. The straight-forward, easy to use format caters for users of all ages and abilities. British Dressage Chief Executive Jason Brautigam commented; “It’s really exciting to bring this new app to the market as part of the Dressage TestPro app series. Our members have been asking for a number of years and now they’ll have our tests easily accessible, completely portable and always up to date. Thanks to the Lion Dogs team for their support and drive to make it happen and I hope members will soon find this to be a great new feature in their competition kit.” View the test just as you would on paper with the PDF viewer. This handy feature allows you to become familiar with the sheet from the judges point of view. Know your double marks, collectives and directives inside out to maximise on your time in the arena. For the more technology-savvy, try the draw feature to test your knowledge. TestPro’s with you on-screen, every step of the way to let you know if you’re on track…or heading slightly astray! This interactive way of learning is suitable for any standard of phone-user – if drawing isn’t quite your style, simply tap the screen and TestPro will draw each movement for you so you can watch the test play from start to finish. There’s also a function to hear your test – play, pause, rewind and fast forward to navigate through the movements until you’re ready to trot down the centre line. Plug in your headphones or listen out loud and choose your ideal settings to start learning! Lion Dogs co-founder Tracy-Anne Ormrod said “We are delighted to bring a British Dressage version of TestPro to the market. In collaboration with BD we have enhanced TestPro to produce an App that we feel will be an essential part of dressage life. We are looking forward to providing dressage riders with further technology in the future to support them to be the best that they can be. “ Head over to the App store on iPhone or iPad to download a free trial and access any BD test for a limited amount of time. After you’ve had a go and seen the magic for yourself, you can subscribe for as little as 9p per test per month. Want to learn more with Dressage TestPro? FEI dressage, para and eventing versions are also available to download, as well as the recently launched Dressage Ireland app. Click here  head to the Dressage Test Pro Facebook page to find out more.
Wednesday, October 24

Nettex Arab Horse Associated Championships

Taking place at Solihull Riding Club last weekend, the Nettex Arab Horse Associated Championships were a highlight in the BD calendar for all riders and fans of this magnificent breed (20 October 2018). The highest score of the show belonged to star youth rider Ruby Gumbley (13) who produced a phenomenal test in the Prelim part-bred Championships with her own Mickey May. Despite only being a partnership for four months, the pint-sized duo blew the competition away earning 75.14% from the judges panel consisting of Islay Auty and Jill Price. Proud mum Suzanne said, “Her test was beautiful to watch and we can’t believe the score, it’s almost embarrassing! One of the judges even left a comment on Ruby’s Facebook to say how harmonious the test was. Ruby’s come off a very cheeky Dartmoor pony and onto Mickey; it’s been a huge learning curve over the last four months. We had a great day out at the [Nettex Arab Horse Associated] Championships, Ruby just wanted to get out and do a bit so we qualified for this show due to Mickey’s Arab bloodlines on his dam’s side.” Ruby and Mickey (pictured) have qualified for the Winter Regionals at Prelim level and are currently working towards completing their Novice qualification. “Ruby’s aiming to ride her first Elementary before Christmas and then keep progressing on to Medium. It’s her dream to make it on to the Pony Squads with this pony so that’s our goal for next year,” Suzanne concluded. Tamsin O’Connor enjoyed great results at this year’s Championships with her own and Jackie Hutchings Mellway Silver Sheen, heading home to Devon with the Prelim pure-bred title and the reserve title in the Novice Championships. Their winning score in the Prelim class was 69.16% which was enough to land them the top spot ahead of Ceri Phipps-Hewitt with Hurstpark Tikkaboo and Kelly Britton with Dhamma Fielen who took second and third respectably. Speaking fondly about ‘Sheen’ on Facebook Tamsin said, “What a fantastic day with Mellway Silver Sheen at the Nettex Arab Horse Associated Championships! This horse so deserves a sash!” Perhaps the most eye-catching winner of the day was the part-bred Prescoed Soloman, a stunning spotted gelding owned by Islay Auty and rider Jen Smithson. ‘Soli’ and Jen claimed the Elementary part-bred Championships in style, earning 69.92% for their immaculate test. A win at the Nettex Associated Championships marks a fitting conclusion to a wonderful year for the duo; their strong results have stretched far and wide with top placings at shows from Royal Windsor to the BD Senior Home International and Petplan Equine Area Festivals. Pauline Taylor and Trixie Belden were the eventual winners of the Novice part-bred Championships whilst Jo Retallack and PS Aurora Silk delivered a sublime performance in the Novice pure-bred competition. The six-year-old mare, owned by Natalie Tindall of Moonlight Arabians, is developing a great record at this show having placed with her owner and former rider in 2017’s Prelim Championships. With Jo in the saddle this year, their winning score was a super 69.19%. David Froggatt made the journey from Lancashire worthwhile with a win in the Elementary pure-bred Championships on board his own Sharrinah and Rebecca Gant was crowned the first winner of the day in the Introductory pure-bred Championships with the eye-catching grey, Binley Silver Spark. Thanks go to generous Championship sponsors Nettex, Solihull Riding Club and the Arab Horse Society for another successful running of this prestigious event. Winners Introductory Pure-bred Champions Rebecca Gant with Binley Silver Spark, 62.93% Prelim Pure-bred Champions Tamsin O’Connor with Mellway Silver Sheen, 69.16% Prelim Part-bred Champions Ruby Gumbley with Mickey May, 75.14% Novice Pure-bred Champions Jo Retallack with PS Aurora Silk, 69.19% Novice Part-bred Champions Pauline Taylor with Trixie Belden, 65.64% Elementary Pure-bred Champions David Froggatt with Sharrinah, 63.52% Elementary Part-bred Champions Jen Smithson with Prescoed Soloman, 69.92% Click here for full results. Photo kindly provided by 1st class images, click here to view the event gallery.   
Tuesday, October 23

New Structure at BDHQ

The countdown to the launch of phase II of BD’s transformational IT project is reaching its final stage. The new system will vastly improve the grading, qualification and results functionality for our Sport Operations Team and enhance the level of service we are able to deliver to members. This IT advancement has provided us with the opportunity to review our organisational structure at BD headquarters, alongside some new appointments. The sport side will now be overseen by a Sport Operations Manager with the areas of rules, fixtures, competitions and championships, both national and international, covered by a team of seven. We are delighted to announce that Lou Jones, currently Regional Development Officer for the North West, has been promoted to take on the new manager’s position from 19 November onwards. Lou has a wealth of knowledge and experience gained from her time as RDO, with particular focus on working with our organisers and venues, making her ideally suited to this post. On the membership front, a new role of Member Experience Manager has been devised to meet the ever changing needs of our members and the business. This new role will head a customer service team, providing support to members on any aspect of the sport, so that most queries can be dealt with by a single point of contact in the office. Phase III of our IT project, due for completion in Q1 in 2019, will deliver a CRM system that will facilitate the ability to handle membership renewals, horse registrations, eligibility, qualification or results queries seamlessly. Rachel Smith, who has eight years of experience in BD, working in both the membership and sport teams, has been promoted to the new position with effect from 29 October onwards. We will also be recruiting for a new Marketing Manager, in place of the former Commercial Manager role, to work closely with Rachel on driving membership and events, as well as provide support to our commercial partners and sponsors, ensuring that our marketing and promotional activity keeps pace as the sport continues to grow. The BD Board has also sanctioned the appointment of a new Chief Operating Officer to support the Chief Executive, to ensure that the day-to-day business continues to operate smoothly and with increased efficiency. Based full time at the BD HQ in Meriden, they will oversee the operation centrally, as well as provide the link between the office and our regional teams. The recruitment process for this position will commence in the next week. Importantly, the overall staffing costs and headcount will remain the same as before. The revised BD Senior Management Structure is below: BD Chief Executive Jason Brautigam commented; “We’re very excited about the launch of Phase II. Testing is going extremely well so far and the new system will hopefully alleviate many of the issues our members have experienced historically with their results and qualifications. Results will be more timely and accurate, plus qualification emails will be sent out as results are gained. A more efficient IT system also provides us with the opportunity to develop a more effective management structure, so the time is right to make a few changes. “I’m delighted to welcome Lou and Rachel to the Senior Management Team, who have both been appointed on merit and earned their promotions after the significant contribution they have made to British Dressage in their previous roles. We’ll now go through the recruitment process for a COO and Marketing Manager to bring the team to full strength, ready to face the opportunities and challenges ahead. It’s an exciting time to join the organisation, so I’m sure that there will be plenty of interest in both of these roles. “Thanks to our partnership with Horse Monkey, the full IT project will finally come to fruition in 2019 and as the needs of the sport continue to evolve my goal is to develop a team to lead the sport forward, provide high standards of customer service and build on the strengths we already have to make British Dressage one of the leading National Governing Bodies in the UK.”    
Tuesday, October 23

British riders flourish in France

British riders enjoyed a highly successful trip to Le Mans CDI3*/2*/U25/Y/J/P/Ch-A in France (18 – 21 October 2018). Gareth Hughes dominated the big tour. The World and European team medallist got off to a fantastic start achieving a one-two in Thursday’s Grand Prix. With wife Rebecca’s Classic Briolinca (Trento B x Royal Dance), the mare with whom he won the LeMieux Grand Prix title at Stoneleigh last month, he took the top honours with a score of 73.565%. With Claudine Kroll’s Swiss-bred KK Woodstock (Wolkentanz II x Landiosa) he also impressed to take second, scoring 70.804%. On to Saturday, Classic Briolinca (pictured above), with whom Gareth was also shortlisted for WEG this year, delivered a superb Grand Prix Special for a personal best score of 76.149%. In an unequivocal victory, the pair finished almost seven percent ahead of Germany’s Juliette Piotrowski and Sir Diamond in second. Not to be outdone by his stablemate, KK Woodstock headed the Grand Prix Freestyle. The 12-year-old gelding was awarded 73.775% ahead of fellow Brit Louise Bell with Into The Blue who achieved 71.700% following their super 68.022% top-five Grand Prix. In the Medium Tour divisions, World Class Podium Potential rider Sarah Millis and her rising star Behroez (pictured right) dominated. Sarah and the huge United x Gribaldi 12-year-old who were unbeatable in the small tour at Le Mans last year, won the Inter B with a score of 69.825% followed by an Inter II victory with 70.88%. “Great day in France with another win for Boss who tried his heart out in the CDI ** Middle Tour Inter II with a plus 70%,” said Sarah on Facebook . “So pleased with this super talented horse. Thank you everyone for all of the support!” In the U25 ranks, Joanna Thurman-Baker who is on the World Class Podium Potential Programme too, delivered two solid performances. With Highcliffe Apollo (Der Lenz x Laptop) she took second in both the Inter II and Grand Prix with scores of 67.765% and 66.154% respectively. This partnership, which has seemingly grown up together is enjoying a successful step up to U25s. “Another second place today,” said Joanna on Facebook . “A few mistakes crept in but I’m so proud of my ‘lil pony’. From Novice to U25 Grand Prix together.” Fourteen year old Soraya Rogers from Dorking had an international debut to remember with the lovely mare, Evita I (pictured right). Soraya and the Dutch-bred Jazz daughter, who is owned by Deborah Kamal, scored 70.379% to take the Children on Horses Prel A. Soraya and nine-year-old Evita are a relatively new pairing having been competing together since June this year. Their week continued with fourth in the Children on Horses Team Test and a close second in the Individual to the Netherlands’ Amber Schelstraete and Burberry. Junior rider Clare Hole (16) and Winnetou G.E.P, a Gribaldi sired 15-year-old owned by Rachel Murray, showed great promise with third place in the Junior Team Test on a score of 67.929%. Clare, who was part of the gold medal-winning British team at the FEI Pony European Championships in 2015, also took fourth with Lynne Jackson’s Pro-Motion (by Pro-Set). In the Pony divisions, which were a hotly contested affair, 2018 FEI Pony European team rider Annabella Pidgley delivered three assured tests with her mother Sarah’s Cognac IX – a German-bred palomino son of FS Chambertin. In the Pony Team Test she posted a score of 70.714% to claim third in the class which was won by the Dutch star pairing of Micky Schelstraete and Elin’s Noncisdador with 72%. The consistency of the rankings continued with a Schelstraete domination however Annabella remained in the frame with seventh in the Individual Test and a shared fourth spot with Belgium’s Noa Joosen in the Freestyle. Results of the British riders: CDI3* - Grand Prix 1st Gareth Hughes and Classic Briolinca, 73.565% (GBR) 2nd Gareth Hughes and KK Woodstock, 70.804% (GBR) 5th Louise Bell and Into The Blue, 68.022% (GBR) 10th Henriette Andersen and Flavio, 64.326% (GBR) CDI3* - Grand Prix Special 1st Gareth Hughes and Classic Briolinca, 76.149% (GBR) 6th Henriette Andersen and Flavio, 65.872% (GBR) CDI3* - Grand Prix Freestyle 1st Gareth Hughes and KK Woodstock, 73.775% (GBR) 2nd Louise Bell and Into The Blue, 71.700% (GBR) CDI2* - Intermediate B 1st Sarah Millis and Behroez, 69.825% (GBR) 5th Kirsty Mepham and Minain, 62.475% (GBR) CDI2* - Intermediate II 1st Sarah Millis and Behroez, 70.088% (GBR) 5th Kirsty Mepham and Minain, 61.971% (GBR) CDI2* - Prix St Georges 1st Matthias Alexander Rath and Danoenchen OLD, 73.412% (GER) 7th Ellen McCarthy with Belafonte, 67.088% (GBR) 11th Dean Skeates with Super Blue, 65.941% (GBR) 16th Kerry Mackin and Esquire, 65.059% (GBR) CDI2* - Intermediate I 1st Matthias Alexander Rath and Danoenchen OLD, 74.765% (GER) 6th Ellen McCarthy and Belafonte, 67.324% (GBR) 12th Dean Skeates and Super Blue, 65.735% (GBR) 15th Kerry Mackin and Esquire, 62.971% (GBR) CDI2* - Intermediate I Freestyle 1st Karen Nijvelt and Elysias, 74.275% (NED) 8th Ellen McCarthy and Belafonte, 67.925% (GBR) 9th Dean Skeates and Super Blue, 67.650% (GBR) 10th Kerry Mackin and Esquire, 66.675% (GBR) CDIU25 - Intermediate II 1st Yoeki Bos and Vivaldi, 69.176% (NED) 2nd Joanna Thurman-Baker and Highcliffe Apollo, 67.765% (GBR) CDIU25 - Grand Prix 16-25 1st Yoeki Bos and Vivaldi, 68.590% (NED) 2nd Joanna Thurman-Baker and Highcliffe Apollo, 66.154% (GBR) CDICh-A – Children on Horses Prel A 1st Soraya Rogers and Evita, 70.379% (GBR) 6th Amy Richards and Rotspons Rough Diamond, 62.121% (GBR) CDICh-A – Children on Horses Ch Team 1st Amber Schelstraete and Burberry, 67.692% (NED) 4th Soraya Rogers and Evita, 66.062% (GBR) CDICh – A – Children on Horses Ch Individual 1st Amber Schelstraete and Burberry, 69.940% (NED) 2nd Soraya Rogers and Evita, 68.333% (GBR) CDIY – Young Rider Team Test 1st Zoe Kuintjes and Primeval Brittsion, 71.471% (NED) 10th Megan Ingham and Wanadoo, 65.588% (GBR) 12th Angus Corrie-Deane and Tiny Tempur, 63.676% (GBR) CDIY – Young Rider Individual Test 1st Zoe Kuintjes and Primeval Brittsion, 70.392% (NED) 10th Angus Corrie-Deane and Tiny Tempur, 66.471% (GBR) 11th Megan Ingham and Wanadoo, 65.784% (GBR) CDIY – Young Rider Freestyle 1st Capucine Noel and Soleil Noir Vom Rosenhof, 72.875% (FRA) 8th Megan Ingham and Wanadoo, 68.458% (GBR) 11th Angus Corrie-Deane and Tiny Tempur, 65.958% (GBR) CDIJ – Junior Team Test 1st Emma-Lou Becca and Komet 282, 69.848% (LUX) 3rd Clare Hole and Winnetou G.E.P, 67.929% (GBR) 4th Clare Hole and Pro-Motion, 67.626% (GBR) 10th Jessica McConkey and Lady Gaga, 66.414% (GBR) CDIJ – Junior Individual Test 1st Emma-Lou Becca and Komet 282, 70.882% (LUX) 5th Clare Hole and Winnetou G.E.P, 67.304% (GBR) 7th Clare Hole and Pro-Motion, 66.667% (GBR) 8th Jessica McConkey and Lady Gaga, 66.412% (GBR) CDIJ – Junior Freestyle 1st Pem Verbeek and Fernando Torres, 72.958% (NED) 6th Jessica McConkey and Lady Gaga, 67.333% (GBR) 7th Clare Hole and Winnetou G.E.P, 66.792% (GBR)\ CDIP – Pony Team Test 1st Micky Schelstraete and Elin’s Noncisdador, 72.000% (NED) 3rd Annabella Pidgley and Cognac IX, 70.714% (GBR) 11th Annabella Pidgley and Ine, 68.714% (GBR) 14th Natasha Powell-Richards and Oosting Amigo, 67.524% (GBR) 18th Holly James and Classic’s Charmeur, 65.238% (GBR) CDIP – Pony Individual Test 1st Micky Schelstraete and Elin’s Noncisdador, 71.532% (NED) 7th Annabella Pidgley and Cognac IX, 68.739% (GBR) 14th Holly James and Classic’s Charmeur, 65.811% (GBR) 16th Annabella Pidgley and Ine, 65.180% (GBR) 17th Natasha Powell-Richards and Oosting Amigo, 63.694% (GBR) CDIP – Pony Freestyle 1st Micky Schelstraete and Elin’s Noncisdador, 74.958% (NED) =4th Annabella Pidgley and Cognac IX, 70.333% (GBR) =4th Noa Joosen and Miss Miracle, 70.333% (BEL) 13th Natasha Powell-Richards and Oosting Amigo, 66.333% (GBR) 16th Holly James and Classic’s Charmeur, 63.042% (GBR) For full results click here Photos from Boulerie Jump - Pôle Européen du Cheval
Friday, October 19

BD International Teams Update

After a busy summer of competing, selection and championships, there have been a number of changes within British Dressage for our International Teams. On the Senior front, it was announced at our Annual General Meeting that our International Director David Trott would be standing down for personal reasons. David was elected in 2012 and has made a significant contribution to the performance of our teams internationally, as well as to the sport generally at Board level. David has agreed to remain a member of the Senior Selection Panel so BD will continue to benefit from his invaluable knowledge, insight and support for our Senior teams. The BD Board have ratified the appointment of Judy Harvey FBHS as an Interim Director, responsible for International Teams. Judy has a strong CV to take on the role, having ridden and judged at the top levels internationally, with a comprehensive understanding of the international landscape. Judy will continue to be a Senior Selector. Following the membership vote to appoint an Interim Chair at the AGM, Linda Whetstone has retired from her position on the Senior Selection Panel. We’re delighted to announce that former Pony Selector, international competitor and List 1 judge Jenny Ward has been appointed to the panel in Linda’s place, and will work alongside Judy Harvey and David Trott as the three Senior Selectors. Earlier this summer a vacancy on our Para Selection Panel was advertised, following the retirement of Waveney Luke. After a competitive interview process, Jane Mcgarel-Groves was appointed to join Carolyn Gardiner and Joyce Head to complete our trio of Para Selectors. Following full evaluation of the 2018 season for the four Under 21 squads and further consultation with our team officials at a recent International Teams meeting, the BD Board have also agreed that a new single Under 21 Selection Panel should select for Pony, Children on Horses, Junior and Young Rider teams. Nikki Herbert and Leanne Wall, who looked after the Junior and Young Rider squads under the previous structure, have kindly agreed to take on the additional responsibility for Ponies and Children on Horses. The Chefs d’Equipe for the Under 21 teams will be taking a more active role in managing the squad preparation and training programmes throughout the year, with the trainers and coach advisor also more involved to support athlete development, thereby allowing the selectors to focus on competitions and the respective annual FEI Championships. There will be an Independent Chair on each of the three selection panels, an initiative that was successfully introduced for the Seniors and Paras this year and will now be extended to our Under 21 teams, to provide additional oversight and ensure that the selection process is in accordance with the published selection policies. BD Chairman Linda Whetstone commented; “We’re desperately sorry to be losing David’s excellent knowledge at Board level, although we are very thankful he’s agreed to stay on as a Senior Selector. He did an outstanding job last year across all our international teams, but it became apparent that concept of sitting on the panels for all of our Under 21 and Senior teams was just too much for one individual to take on. This new approach, with the addition of an Independent Chair for all selection meetings, should work much better in practice. “Judy has already made some useful contributions at her first board meeting we are delighted to have someone of Jenny’s stature to succeed me on our Senior Selection Panel. “A warm welcome to Jane as a Para Selector; her strong knowledge of para dressage will further strengthen the area as the team build towards next year’s European Championships, where they’ll no doubt be hungry to get back to winning ways. Our sincere thanks go to Waveney for her immense dedication and support of the Para team, over a period of unparalleled success. “In the area of under 21s, the Board felt that bringing in a single panel to oversee the selection of all squads, with the trainers and Chefs working more closely with the riders and their support teams, would be a strong move and will build better rapport and continuity. We very much look forward to putting this into practice over the coming months during a busy winter of training and team building towards selection. “Having been involved in selection for a number of years, it’s a tough role. There are many balls to juggle, tricky decisions to be taken and plenty of emotion involved from those competing for a place on our Championship teams. So, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank our three volunteer selection panels for their time, input and contribution to the sport. 2019 is looking bright as we now have the infrastructure in place for our teams to flourish – so good luck to all the riders involved as they aim for selection next year.” The complete list of BD selectors is as follows: Senior Selection Panel Judy Harvey David Trott Jenny Ward Para Selection Panel Carolyn Gardiner Joyce Head Jane Mcgarel-Groves Under 21s Selection Panel Nikki Herbert Leanne Wall
Friday, October 19

Under 21s Prime and Progress Squads announced

The Selectors are pleased to announce the new intake of Pony, Children on Horses, Junior and Young Rider Prime and Progress Squads following the Viewing Days in September. PRIME SQUADS Selected for Pony Prime Squad Training 2018/2019 Bonnie Bourne and Fin C We Holly James and Classic’s Charmeur Holly Kerslake and Valhallas Zorro Lily Laughton and Armada Magic Cadillac Isobel Lickley and Valido’s Sunshine Emilia Nelson and WFS Top Red Annabella Pidgley and Ine Annabella Pidgley and Cognac Betsy Smetham and Golden Amber Hermione Tottman and Beekzicht’s Bolero Olivia Whitelaw and Brouwershaven’s Viceroy Selected for Children on Horses Prime Squad Training 2018/2019 Amy Richards and Rotspons Rough Diamond Soraya Rogers and Evita I Selected for Junior Prime Squad Training 2018/2019 Jessica McConkey and Lady Gaga II Charlotte McDowall and Alivia Samantha Willson and Delhurens Sunshine Selected for Young Rider Prime Squad Training 2018/2019 Rebecca Bell and Nibeley Union Hit Isobel Berrington and Bing Angus Corrie-Deane and Tiny Tempur Charlotte Dicker and Sabatini Alex Hellings and Uvender V PROGRESS SQUADS Selected for Pony Progress Squad Training 2018/2019 Beatrice Butterworth and Carlsson Claudia Davis and Rubinia 37 Myles Graham and Harnells Erasmus Steffi Tomlinson and Vivassa Mollie Whitham and DZL Royal Sunrise Selected for Children on Horses Progress Squad Training 2018/2019 Sophia Marston and Solitaire II Selected for Junior Progress Squad Training 2018/2019 Harriet Brick and World Dancer Jessie Kirby and Belle Amie I Junior Progress Reserves (in alphabetical order) Caitlin Burgess and Chocotof Avery Maude and Double Agent Sophie Morgan-Rodda and Zanthoos Himself Selected for Young Rider Progress Squad Training 2018/2019 Jade Ellery and Porsche’s Eloy - pictured Lara Kuropatwa and For Season Meghan Ingham and Wanadoo Bridget Tate and Hawtins Werona
Thursday, October 18

Haddon Training British Grooms Awards 2018

With the every increasing media coverage facilitating the rising awareness of the important role grooms play in their rider’s success and none more so than ever of those who supported the Team GBR riders at the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games, Tryon together with those who supported the Pony, Children Junior and Young Rider European teams as quite rightly they played such a big part in the overall success of Team GBR. Nevertheless, so many grooms do not receive the acknowledgement they deserve for their hard work and commitment to the equines in their care, however, through the Haddon Training sponsored British Grooms Awards this provides an opportunity for these often unsung heroes of the equestrian industry to be recognised and rewarded. Chris Hewlett, Managing Director of Haddon Training said, “Whilst the continuing media coverage is excellent in raising awareness of the valuable role grooms do play, particularly at elite level, I hope by sponsoring the British Grooms Awards it demonstrates the importance that is placed on all grooms who are the backbone of the equine industry and who very rarely get identified and recognised for all their hard work.” The winning recipients in the five categories of the Haddon Training British Grooms Awards will be presented with their awards at the annual British Breeders Awards Dinner in London on Saturday 12th January 2019. Amy Boynton, a senior groom at the World Horse Welfare Glenda Spooner Farm Rescue and Rooming Centre and the winning recipient of the Haddon Training British Grooms Award in 2018 said, “To win the British Grooms Award really meant a lot to me, as I was really shocked I that I had been nominated for such a prestigious award. With Haddon Training sponsoring the British Grooms Awards it really shows there is the recognition for the hard work all grooms put in day after day and working with animals can bring great joy but also heartache at times, which is not always recognised outside of the equine industry”. Since Haddon Training began its sponsorship of the British Grooms Awards four years ago the overriding message from all the winning recipients is one of appreciation that there is now the opportunity for all hard working grooms not only to be recognised but also to receive the acknowledgment that they quite rightly deserve as they are very much the backbone of the equine industry and with the five categories that form the British Grooms Awards this allows for a wide spectrum of grooms to be recommended for these prestigious awards. Nominations are now open and to nominate a candidate for one of the five categories of the Haddon Training British Grooms Awards, click here for entry criteria and to complete the online forms. • HT British Grooms Award • HT Team GBR Grooms Award • HT Team GBR Pony, Junior & YR Award • HT Manager Award • HT Apprentice Award Nominations close Friday 16 November 2018.  © Craig Payne Photography - 2017 HT British Grooms Award winners   
Wednesday, October 17

Veteran joie de vivre at Vale View

Four days, forty classes and over 285 starters made up this year’s bumper instalment of the Nettex Veteran Horse & Rider Championships at Vale View, 11 – 14 October. With titles on offer from Intro to Prix St George accorss thee categories of rider (55 and over), horses aged 15 to 19 and horses 20 and older, it was a busy few days with plenty of first rate competition. Vale View owner and manager Julie Hyslop took the spoils in two of the Nettex rider championships claiming the Novice with youngster Rubin Star Lioness, an Oldenburg by Rubin Star N competing in just their fifth test together. At the opposite end of the spectrum, Julie partnered her own veteran DHI Krackatoa to victory in the PSG class on Saturday evening. The duo has been together for an amazing 12 years and have had a great 2018 together, winning every time out this season at small tour so the Nettex sash is the cherry on top. Our eldest victor in the sections was John Bowers who took the Elementary section riding Wiaronett with a score of 69.71% at 73 years young. Based not far from Vale View in Leicestershire, John has been a BD member since 1998, only missing posting results in two years, 2015 and 2017. In the Nettex Veteran Horse sections, Cornish raider Judi Foster, herself a veteran rider, did a double in the Elementary and Medium sections for horses aged 15 – 19 riding Sue Gilbert’s 17 year old Leyla. The duo are well established at Elementary but this is their first year competing at Medium level and taking the win with 66.61% proves you can teach an older horse new tricks! Para Grade III rider Amanda Shirtcliffe took the Novice 15 – 19 title with her own Michelangelo, a 15 year old Swedish warmblood by Lambourgini. In her own unique Facebook style, Amanda exclaimed; “Yesterday a sinner and today a National winner! With the threat of being gifted to the glue factory, Magic Mike bucked his ideas up and channelled his inner Hugh Hefner to charm the lady judges and take the Veteran Championship title. Good boy Mike – never doubted you for a second!” It was two touching tales of long partnerships in the 20 and over horse categories at Elementary and Medium levels. The biggest thanks at the end of any test went to West Sussex’s Amelia Ward who showered her 23 year old Tireve What’s Wanted with pats and cuddles knowing that he’d given his all for his rider in the Elementary. The Welsh Section C was bought by Amelia ten years ago when she was nine but it wasn’t plain sailing to begin with. “Six weeks after we bought him, he just about bucked me off every day for six months. We came within a week of selling him but family friend Richard Evans said bring him over and we’ve never looked back,” she recalled. “It our first season with BD as he’s really a jumping machine. In fact, he was quite disappointed when we arrived and there were no jumps. It’s only our fifth Elementary together and hopefully we can qualify next year at Medium. I’m so glad all those years I stuck with him; it was the best decision I ever made and I just love him to bits; he’s my best friend. I have to say a huge thank you to my trainer Daniel Timpson as I couldn’t have won without all he does for me.” In the Medium, it was a fairy tale win by Laura Henton and her 25 year old The Fieldmaster, by Embla Farmer, as the duo have been together for 21 years – they came together when she just 12 and the horse just four in Pony Club. A partnership in eventing flourished and they went on to represent Great Britain at the 2002 Junior European Championships in Waregem. They rose further through the ranks reaching three star level before leaving the jumping behind in 2007. In 2016, Laura rejoined BD after an eight year lapse with ‘Fred’ to keep him busy with great success. “What’s so nice about today was I came out thinking he really tried his best and it made me feel I didn’t really care what the judges think as to me he couldn’t have done better. To see he then came first was just the icing on the cake,” commented Laura. “When we were eventing, show jumping was his strongest phase and he was a great cross country horse but we’ve really had to work on his dressage. He’s given me so much, he’s my horse of a life time; my best friend! He’s part of the family. “He’s enjoying himself and is so fit and well so we’ll keep going. I’d like to try Advanced Medium but not sure at 25 we’ll be getting the changes right! I couldn’t be happier and it’s very emotional when you’ve had horses that long; they’re just such a part of your life,” she said. Laura added; “I’m so impressed with BD and all the things they offer – there really is something for everyone and it’s now such an open sport. To have something like this to aim for with a 25 year old is just fantastic.” Pictured is Sue Lanz riding Wellshead Foxtrot, who have a combined age of 90, were presented with their Advanced Medium prizes by Elizabeth Taylor of the Veteran Horse Society. A massive thanks to the team at Vale View who did a fantastic job over the four days, our valued sponsor Nettex for their support of the Associated Championships, the Veteran Horse Society and all the riders and their support crews who braved the weather and provided fabulous competition. Nettex Veteran Rider Intro Karen Davies (56) with Peggy, 63.04% Prelim Debra Stapleton (56) with Fuego’s Funny Guy, 72.41% Novice Julie Hyslop (59) with Rubin Star Lioness, 69.35% Elementary John Bowers (73) with Wiaronett, 69.71% Medium Shirley Hart (63) with Lord Harvey, 68.01% Advanced Medium Elaine Wilson (63) with Ebabelou, 66.05% Prix St Georges Julie Hyslop (59) with DHI Krackatoa, 66.71% Nettex Veteran Horse Intro 15 – 19 – Jade Taylor with Bennynthejets (16), 66.96% 20 and over – Stacey Ann Pride with Liquorice II (20), 66.74% Prelim 15 – 19 – Kirsty Christopher with Attack II (18), 69.14% 20 and over – Julie Willis with Dorothy (21), 68.28% Novice 15 – 19 – Amanda Shirtcliffe with Michelangelo (15), 68.24% 20 and over – Rebecca Hamilton-Fletcher with Smokin Gun (20), 71.48% Elementary 15 – 19 – Judi Foster with Leyla (17), 69.56% 20 and over – Amelia Ward with Tireve What’s Wanted (23), 68.39% Medium 15 – 19 – Judi Foster with Leyla (17), 66.69% 20 and over – Laura Henton with The Fieldmaster (25), 63.09% Advanced Medium 15 – 19 – Sue Lanz with Wellshead Foxtrot (16), 64.80% 20 and over – Sarah Halls with Pavarotti II (21), 65.86% Prix St Georges 15 – 19 – Samantha Fish with Cumeragh House Mac (17), 68.75% 20 and over – Laura Payne with Calderon (20), 62.70% For the full results – click here  
Tuesday, October 16

New RoR Showcase event

Following another successful RoR National Championships at Aintree Equestrian Centre in Liverpool, Retraining of Racehorses (RoR) will be back at the same venue on Saturday 3rd November 2018 with its first ever RoR Showcase. An inspirational training and educational event designed by RoR to highlight the talent and transition of thoroughbred racehorses to their second careers, the day is for anyone interested in former racehorses or considering having one, from grassroots to elite level. Visitors to the new RoR Showcase, which is supported by The Racing Foundation, will have the chance to enjoy live demonstrations and clinics featuring over 20 former racehorses, as well as a wide range of up-close demos, in and around two Arenas. Showing, dressage, jumping, eventing, endurance, natural horsemanship, western riding, long lining, and horseball will all be showcased. A line up of top trainers and experts including Olympian eventer Jeanette Brakewell, show producer Katie Jerram-Hunnable, British Dressage Training Director Paul Hayler, natural horseman Guy Robertson and other equine specialists will share their knowledge on selecting, caring for, and retraining the thoroughbred after racing for various equine disciplines. Other racing industry experts include racehorse trainer Bryan Smart and vet Jenny Hall discussing the racehorse as an athlete and its transition to a new career, using real racehorses. One of the star attractions will be the popular educational company Horses Inside Out staging a live painted horse demonstration. Equine anatomist and sports therapist Gillian Higgins will paint the musculoskeletal system of a former racehorse throughout the day to highlight the physical changes in the transition from racehorse to riding horse. In addition, there will be an Ask The Experts Lounge where visitors will have the opportunity to ask one-to-one questions and gather more tips and advice from all the experts. The day runs from 9am to 5pm and will culminate with the RoR Grand Showcase finale featuring all of the day’s retrained horses including 2014 Grand National winner Pineau De Re and former Royal Ascot winner Namibian. Di Arbuthnot, RoR Chief Executive explains: “The RoR Showcase is intended to inspire and educate trainers, riders and owners at every level involved or interested in transitioning former racehorses to second careers, as well as providing information on the care, training and sale of these horses. This is a fantastic opportunity to come along and meet a host of experts and industry professionals all under one roof.” For more information, a full schedule, and to book tickets for the RoR Showcase day visit the RoR microsite . Tickets cost £15 each online (or £18 on the day).  
Tuesday, October 16

BD Abroad: Le Mans CDI3*/2*/U25/Y/J/P/Ch-A

The following riders have been selected to represent Great Britain this week at Le Mans CDI3*/2*/U25/Y/J/P/Ch-A in France (18 – 21 October 2018). CDI3* - Big Tour Henriette Andersen from Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire with her own Flavio (bay gelding, 13yrs, 16.2hh, s. Florencio ds. Glueckspilz) - pictured. Louise Bell from Banbury, Oxfordshire with her own Into The Blue (roan gelding, 12yrs, 16.2hh, s. Ublesco ds. Calvaro Z). Gareth Hughes from Southam, Warwickshire with Rebecca Hughes’ Classic Briolinca (bay mare, 12yrs, 16.2hh, s. Trento B ds. Royal Dance) and Claudine Kroll’s KK Woodstock (brown gelding, 12yrs, 17.2hh, s. Wolkentanz II ds. Landiosa). CDI2* - Middle Tour Kirsty Mepham from Crawley, West Sussex with Anne Baldock and Rebecca Vinter’s Minain (brown mare, 15yrs, 16.2hh, s. Idocus ds. Michellino). Sarah Millis from Horsham, West Sussex with her own Behroez (bay gelding, 12yrs, 18hh, s. United ds. Gribaldi). CDI2* - Small Tour Kerry Mackin from Horsham, West Sussex with Angela Jones’ Esquire III (bay gelding, 9yrs, 17hh, s. Valeron). Ellie McCarthy from New Milton, Hampshire (based in Germany) with her own Belafonte (chestnut stallion, 14yrs, s. Belissimo M ds. Wendekreis). Dean Skeates from Swindon, Wiltshire with Judy Peploe’s Super Blue (bay gelding, 14yrs, 17hh, s. Show Star ds. Florestan I). CDIU25 – Inter II and Grand Prix 16-25 Isabelle Chaplin from Sevenoaks, Kent with Coral Ingham’s Vincente (bay stallion, 16yrs, 16.2hh, s. Gribaldi). Joanna Thurman-Baker from Henley-on-Thames with Samantha Thurman-Baker’s Highcliffe Apollo (bay gelding, 16yrs, 16.2hh, s. Der Lenz ds. Laptop). CDIY - Young Riders Angus Corrie-Deane from Salisbury, Wiltshire with his own Tiny Tempur (bay gelding, 13yrs, 17.1hh, s. Raikano). Megan Ingham from Wokingham, Berkshire with Coral Ingham’s Wanadoo (chestnut gelding, 17yrs, 16.2hh, s. Wolkenstein II ds. Cavalier). CDIJ - Juniors Clare Hole from Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk with Lynne Jackson’s Pro-Motion (bay gelding, 15yrs, 16.2hh, s. Pro-Set) and Rachel Murray’s Winnetou G.E.P. (black gelding, 15yrs, 17hh, s. Gribaldi ds. Donnerhall). Jessica McConkey from Watlington, Oxfordshire with her own Lady Gaga II (bay mare, 9ys, 16.2hh, s. Quaterback ds. Solos Landwind). CDIP - Ponies Holly James from Horsham, West Sussex with Oliver Booth’s Classic’s Charmeur (palomino gelding, 11yrs, 14.2hh, s. Classic Dancer ds. Domingo). Annabella Pidgley from Windsor, Berkshire with Sarah Pidgley’s Cognac IX (palomino gelding, 10yrs, 14.1hh, s. FS Chambertin ds. Waldemar) and Sarah Pidgley’s Ine (chestnut mare, 11yrs, 14.1hh, s. Constantin ds. Handryk). Natasha Powell-Richards from Leatherhead, Surrey with Lara Dyson’s Oosting Amigo (black stallion, 9yrs, 14.1hh, s. Hagelkruis Valentijn ds. Verona’s Bo Gi). CDICh-A – Children on Horses Amy Richards from Bodmin, Cornwall with her own Rotspons Rough Diamond (black mare, 14yrs, 16hh, s. Rotspon). Soraya Rogers from Dorking, Surrey with Deborah Kamal’s Evita I (black mare, 9yrs, 16.3hh, s. Jazz). Start lists and results
Friday, October 12

New look GP to be trialled at Olympia

HPower Group, organiser of Olympia, The London International Horse Show, host to the UK leg of the FEI Dressage World Cup™, has worked in consultation with the FEI and international dressage riders to revitalise the FEI Dressage World Cup™ competition by making it more interesting to a wider audience. The two evenings of the newly designed competition will be seen at Olympia on Monday 17 and Tuesday 18 December 2018. Agreed by the FEI Dressage World Cup™ Committee, this will form a two-year pilot project, which seeks to actively engage the audience and broaden the discipline’s appeal, particularly during the Grand Prix test. The changes to the existing dressage format include significant alterations to the Grand Prix phase, although the test will still be judged and ridden in the same format as all other FEI technical tests and will continue to demand the highest level of technical ability, accuracy and precision. The Grand Prix changes include: • A shorter Grand Prix technical set test of five minutes • Music will be selected for each rider, by a professional Musical Director, for the Grand Prix Test, which will reflect each combination’s personality and interests • After the Grand Prix, riders will remain in the arena to watch the Judges scores, which will provide immediacy and instant reaction • During the Grand Prix, spectators will be able to assess their own marking skills against the professional Judges After each Grand Prix Test, riders will discuss their performance in a short interview in front of the audience. Collectively, it will give the audience a Masterclass from the rider’s perspective over the entire competition. Richard Davison, Dressage Consultant to the Olympia Organising Committee, who has been working together with the FEI on the project said, “The World Cup series is a really important opportunity for us to showcase dressage and widen its appeal. This pilot project is an exciting initiative aimed at adding considerably more spectator appeal, while maintaining traditional dressage values and a highly competitive format.” Simon Brooks-Ward, Show Director, said: “This new format is not a gimmick or a theatrical experiment. I have been convinced, for some time, that Dressage in the World Cup Series has been underperforming against its potential. Unashamedly – and I believe quite rightly – we want to make the Grand Prix evening at Olympia as meaningful, relevant and exciting as the Freestyle night. Two cracking nights of elite competition will do a lot to improve Dressage’s visibility amongst those who have not been initiated into the complexities of the sport.” Adding to the dressage entertainment will be The Reprise Des Douzes from La Garde Republicaine, who are renowned for their balletic dressage moves and technically difficult group riding. The Olympia Grand Prix evening, on Monday 17 December, is set to be an evening where the audience can immerse themselves in the highly skilled sport of dressage. Remember BD members are eligble for discounted tickets on Tuesday 18 December - 20% all but the highest priced tickets.  Contatct the BD office for details.  Click here for the Olympia Horse Show website for timetables, show info and to book tickets.  
Friday, October 12

Nettex Draught Horse Associated Championships

Clydesdales, Haflingers, Irish Sport Horses and full Irish Draughts were just some of the breeds down the centre line at the Nettex Draught Horse Associated Championship at Keysoe EC on 30 September. With classes ranging from Intro B to Elementary, there was a lot to see and admire. There were separate classes for full draught and part-draught horses. Full draught James McGivern and Graigueaverne Forester (pictured) were the show’s top scorers, with a fabulous 74.23% winning them the Nettex Novice title and they also had a second place in the Nettex Elementary. James comes from the Isle of Man and as the horse is a poor traveler and sometimes needs sedation, they arrived in Keysoe a week early. Their 600-mile round trip was worthwhile though, with such great performances. James bought ‘Mac’, an 18hh by Shenandoah Prince Holly, last year when he was seven. “He’s still sometimes a bit green in the arena but he felt really in front of me and for most of the test I was just steering!” commented James. “Afterwards the judges told me they were impressed by his correct training and that I had ridden the most accurate test of the day.” Mac is a bit of a self-harmer, having previously got stuck in the living of his lorry and a week before leaving for the mainland, he got all four legs stuck in a five-bar gate. In the past James has worked as a groom and rider but now owns a domiciliary care agency. Abbi Willetts has owned her Nettex Intro B winner, 15-year-old Clydesdale Arclid Alfie for nine years. She bought the bay roan with four white socks as her first horse from a trekking centre. An infected pastern joint threatened his ridden career but he has come right and Abbi affiliated him a year ago. “We did dressage as I thought it would be less taxing and it turns out he’s quite capable at it,” said Abbi. “He’s very light on his feet, a proper dancing diva. I’m very proud of my horse, he and I have come a long way. Abbi works in construction management and is the mother of five-year-old twins. This was her and Alfie’s first overnight trip. “He was a star – an absolutely gentleman throughout. My challenge for next year is to qualify for the Novice regionals and Elementary Area Festivals.” Nettex Elementary Champion was Heather White and Hawklands Echo, an 18hh seven-year-old by Avanti Amorous Archie. She has owned him since he was an unbroken three-year-old and bought him from Cornwall. “I’ve backed and produced him myself with the help of Clare Ballantyne,” said Heather who works full-time as a solicitor in Stoke-on-Trent. “He’s been to the summer regionals at Novice and Elementary and is qualified for winter regionals at Elementary and Medium. This was our first time at the Draught Championships – it’s been our goal every year but something always cropped up to stop us getting here.” “This was one of the best tests he’s ever done. He was really rideable and with me. His trot work was some of the best he’s done,” she commented. “It all came together and the judge at C gave me 72%! I was very proud of how he behaved at his first major championships. Last year Echo’s full brother Hawklands Argento Amore won the Prelim and Novice titles with Kirstie Clarke. Janet Mathews and Avanti Flirty Gerty had a super day, winning the Nettex Prelim title as well as being reserve Nettex Novice Champion. Janet has owned the British-bred 14-year-old mare since she was a yearling. Over the years they’ve done all the riding club disciplines but are now concentrating on dressage. Janet was thrilled to have taken part in two mounted prize-givings and to have won one of the coveted sashes. “She’s taken me to the BD regionals and Welsh championships,” said Janet who travelled all the way from Wales. “In the Prelim test she was a little excited in the outdoor arena and a bit fresh. She was more settled in the Novice. She’s an excellent horse – I’m so pleased with her.” Part-bred draught Former show horse and eventer, Moonshine II, won both Novice and Elementary championships. The 12-year-old gelding, ridden by Helen Airey, is by Touch Of The Blues and is owned by breeder Chris McGrann. “He stopped eventing after an injury and I’ve been riding him for nearly 12 months,” said Helen who works three days a week as a chartered accountant and has two young children. “Chris offered me the ride on Billy when my own horse was injured.” Billy’s transition to dressage has gone well and the pair were 17th at Novice Silver at the National Championships. “He was super in both tests and we got 8 and 9 in the Elementary for his final medium trot and halt. He’s a real character and lovely to have on the yard. His favourite thing is to turn the feed room light on and off.” Helen will be moving him up to Medium over the winter with the help of Chris, Sarah Rogers and the training with Stephen Clarke organised by the Northern Dressage Group. Nettex Prelim Champion Just Look At Me was bought four years ago as a three-year-old for the hacking business Zanna Saville was running at the time. “All he’d done was hunt in Ireland and hack. I bought him as he was safe as houses,” explained Zanna. “He’d never been in a school and couldn’t canter in the arena. We affiliated in April 2017 and qualified for Keysoe summer regionals in 2017 and 2018 and Eastern and Otley winter regionals this year.” “He felt amazing in the test, really relaxed,” said Zanna, who trains with international Grand Prix rider Paul Friday. “He’s a really willing horse and always tries so hard. “ Belinda Burdett and Treble Maker were the only combination to come forward for the Nettex Intro B class. She has owned ‘Lloyd’, an Irish sports horse, for four years and has evented him up to BE90. “He does tend to switch off in the dressage – he prefers jumping!” said Janet who enjoyed their first experience of competing away and taking part in the championships. Janet hails from Lowestoft where she works full-time in the motorsport industry. “It was nice to be judged by high level judges.” Congratulations to all the riders who took part. British Dressage thanks the team at Keysoe for a successful Championship event as well as title sponsor Nettex for their generous support of the Associated Championship series. The winners: Intro for pure-breds Abbi Willets with Arlid Alfie, 69.02% Intro for part-breds Belinda Burdett and Treble Maker, 63.04% Preliminary for pure-breds Janet Mathews with Avanti Flirty Gerty, 66.98% Preliminary for part-breds Zanna Saville and Just Look At Me, 71.56% Novice for pure-breds James McGivern and Graigueaverne Forester, 74.23% Novice for part-breds Helen Airey and Moonshine II, 70.96% Elementary for pure-breds Heather White and Hawklands Echo, 71.09% Elementary for part-breds Helen Airey and Moonshine II, 70.55% For full results click here Words by Helen Triggs
Thursday, October 11

Nettex Lusitano Associated Championship

The Nettex Lusitano Associated Championship gave this beautiful Portuguese breed the chance to step into the spotlight at Keysoe on 29 September. The breed is famous for its flamboyance and talent for dressage. Nika Vorster rides both PREs and Lusitanos in her job as rider at Premier PRE Dressage in Oxfordshire but it was the handsome grey Lusitano Curioso (pictured at the MCI Finals) that won her two titles at Keysoe, taking the winner’s sash in the Medium and Advanced Medium classes. Curioso had the highest score of the day of 70.81% in the Medium. Nika has been riding Louisa Collins’ 11-year-old for three years and recently they won the Medium Bronze at Sparsholt's Petplan Equine Area Festival Final. They also competed at Elementary and Medium at the Petplan Equine Area Festival Finals 2018 and were part of the silver medal winning British team at the MCI Dressage Masters European final. “He’s a very sensitive chap and relies on me to give him confidence,” said Nika. “Three years ago we were doing Novice classes and now he’s competing up to Advanced, so patience pays off.” “He was a little bit tense to start in the Medium but then started to come better in the second half of the test. He was much more relaxed in the Advanced Medium. Doing two tests was a big ask for him as he likes to do one and then go home!” Nika keeps Curioso sweet with a varied work programme and only schools him twice a week. He jumps, does groundwork and goes for hacks. Jess Ashwell and Sueste II, a stunning dark bay stallion, had the second highest score of the day, to win the Novice champion title. She was also reserve champion in the Elementary class at her first year at the level. Jess and Sueste were Preliminary Champions in 2016. The 19-year-old Sueste has had a varied career which includes being a member of the GB working equitation team competing all around Europe, showjumping and hunting. Jess has owned him for two-and-a-half years. “We only affiliated two years ago,” explained Jess. “He felt seriously up for it and I was nicely surprised by the score.” Nicky Thayer beat Sueste to take the Elementary title on Estribo with 66.88%. She has been competing Estribo in affiliated dressage since March 2016. This year they took 12th place at Elementary Silver at Wellington and Crofton Manor Area Festivals. They also placed second at Elementary in both straight and freestyle classes at the Iberian Performance Show. Nicky admitted that the bull-fighting bred nine-year-old has not been easy to train. She bought him unbacked and it took a year before he could be ridden. “We’ve been eliminated so many times in tests as he gets half way through the tests and then starts to object,” said Nicky. “I think it made a huge difference that I came on Friday and did all the arena walks. For once everything came together.” Veteran stallion, 20-year-old San Rafael wasn’t showing his age at all when he scooped the prestigious Prix St Georges Championship for owner Emma Pewter. This is the second sash for Rafael who was the Advanced Medium Champion in 2017.They also won an Advanced Medium title at the Veteran Horse Championships. Emma, who is programme manager for the College of West Anglia in Cambridge, is a BD judge and keen competitor. The pair have been part of the Eastern region team at the Home International and she trains with Mark Ruddock and John Bowen. They also represented Great Britain at the MCI Dressage Masters European Final. Emma has owned Rafael for five years and keeps him fit with lots of hacking and trotting over poles. Emma’s husband Gary, an ex-jump jockey also helps out with the hacking “I’ve thought of retiring him but he is still very fit and supple,” she said. “We don’t do much over the winter and if he still feels good in Spring, we’ll carry on.” “I was thrilled with him. We had one mistake in the final halt but he felt really good and sat well in his canter pirouettes,” said Emma. The Prelim title was especially sweet for Helen Delgaudio who has had a lot of lameness issues with Esporao and at one time she thought the nine-year-old would have to be retired or put to sleep. Fortunately a new farrier shod him differently and he is now out competing again. “He’s a cheeky chappy,” said Helen, who imported him three years ago. “He was a bit distracted as he’s not been to Keysoe before but he’s a bit of a showman who rises to the occasion.” Esporao was also reserve champion in the Novice class. Congratulations to all the riders who took part. British Dressage thanks the team at Keysoe for a successful Championship event as well as title sponsor Nettex for their generous support of the Associated Championship series. The winners: Preliminary Helen Delgaudio and Esporao, 68.54% Novice Jessica Ashwell and Sueste II, 69.04% Elementary Nicky Thayer and Estribo, 66.88% Medium Nika Vorster and Curioso, 70.81% Advanced Medium Nika Vorster and Curioso, 68.22% Prix St Georges Emma Pewter and San Rafael, 65.66% For full results click here Words by Helen Triggs Photo © Kevin Sparrow
Wednesday, October 10

BGA launches Grooms Minds online resource

To mark World Mental Health Day today, the British Grooms Association (BGA) launched Grooms Minds online which has eight areas to support mental health including a mental wellbeing checker, self-help zone, video scripts and real life case studies. The BGA has developed these online resources in response to its survey last year which revealed that over 70% of grooms have been bullied (including being the recipient of derogatory comments) within the workplace, either by their employer or by fellow workers and 83% of grooms who responded are suffering from stress and/or mental wellbeing problems. Just 12 months on, the BGA now has a strong message of ‘You are not alone.’ For so many grooms, this will become invaluable and life changing. Sylvia Bruce, a mental health in the workplace consultant who helped develop the web pages commented: “Grooms Minds is vitally important because it promotes the principle of talking mental health matters and encourages members’ mental health awareness and confidence. In addition it will enhance the profession, industry brand and reputation; aspiring to create more empathic, compassionate and supportive working environments thus attracting, engaging and retaining the best talent – surely a win/win for everyone involved.“ The Grooms Minds online project has been generously supported by British Dressage, British Showjumping, British Eventing, the British Horse Society, the Pony Club and World Horse Welfare. For more information visit the Grooms Minds website .  #GroomsMinds #Youarenotalone
Wednesday, October 10

Wins all round for Brits at Nice CDI3*

The three British riders who travelled to the South of France for Nice CDI3* (4 – 7 October 2018) have each returned victorious from the French Riviera venue. Prolific Grand Prix rider Emma Hindle has been ‘on tour’ this year with Romy Del Sol (pictured earlier this year) to give the horse experience in the show environment and it’s certainly paying off. So far this season, Emma and the 12-year-old Blue Hors Romanov mare have shown excellent results with consistent high placings and wins at CDIs across Europe including Keysoe, Aalborg, Mannheim, Wiesbaden, Rotterdam and Waregem. Maintaining this form, their campaign in France last week resulted in two personal best scores for the combination. A super mark of 71.522% gave them victory in the Grand Prix, with Germany’s Alexander Matthias Rath and Foundation 22 taking second and Russia’s Tatiana Miloserdova and Florento Fortuna completing the top three. Then on to Saturday, Emma held her domination to win once again, this time on 72.660%, with Miloserdova taking second and Rath, third - the ground jury of Alban Tissot (FRA) at H, Thomas Lang (AUT) at E, Eduard De Wolff Van Westerrode (NED) at C, Maria Colliander (FIN) at M and Magnus Ringmark (SWE) at B in total agreement of their placing of each competitor in the class. In the Small Tour divisions, Great Britain’s representatives both rose to the fore. In Friday’s Prix St Georges, Kate Lister and World Exclusive (World of Dreams x Rohdiamant) and Sarah Williams with Georgina Howard’s mare Bohigas W (Breitling W x Fabriano) delivered solid tests for 69%-plus for third and fourth place respectively. Kate and World Exclusive (pictured right) then claimed the next day’s Inter I just ahead of second-placed Sarah (pictured below) who went on take the Inter I Freestyle with 70.775%. “It’s a fantastic feeling,” Kate told British Dressage after her return home to Warwickshire. “This has finished my year beyond expectations.” Kate acquired 12-year-old ‘Wex’, a former ride of Lesley Peyton-Gilbert, in February of this year and quickly formed a good partnership with the handsome chestnut gelding. “He came in to Henry’s [Boswell who is based at Kate’s yard] to be sold. When I rode him we clicked immediately - I’ve never clicked with a horse that quickly before. The minute you get on it’s a wonderful feeling. To start with I tried to ‘ignore’ the horse but one day as I was riding, Henry shouted ‘you’ve got to buy him!” said Kate who credits Lesley as having done ‘a wonderful job’. This year, the new partnership has competed only in Premier Leagues, being placed in the top five each time. “We then went to the Nationals, being placed fifth in the Inter I and seventh in the Music. It’s taken me 18 years to get back to the Nationals so this was such a big boost.” Talking about her rides in Nice, Kate describes the PSG as a good, clean test. “He’s a good at pulling off a good, clean test on the first day. Then on the day of the Inter I it was very hot. I tried to keep the warm up short, and I rode him a bit harder as the heat was getting to him a little. But he just tried his hardest for me! The pirouettes we’ve been working hard to improve, and they really came off which I was very happy with.” Looking ahead, Kate, who trains with both Henry Boswell and Carl Hester is aiming for a CDI at Medium Tour before a step up to Big Tour next year. “He’s proven that he can cut the mustard,” said Kate, reflecting on the start to their international career. Results of the British riders: Grand Prix 1st Emma Hindle with Romy Del Sol, 71.522% (GBR) 9th Emma Hindle with Diesel 8, 63.674% (GBR) Grand Prix Special 1st Emma Hindle with Romy Del Sol, 72.660% (GBR) Grand Prix Freestyle 1st Remy Bastings with Dior S, 72.875% (NED) 2nd Emma Hindle with Diesel 8, 66.125% (GBR) Prix St Georges 1st Laureen Poncelet with Andretti 13, 70.265% (BEL) 3rd Kate Lister with World Exclusive, 69.441% (GBR) 4th Sarah Williams with Bohigas W, 69.206% (GBR) Intermediate I 1st Kate Lister with World Exclusive, 70.324% (GBR) 2nd Sarah Williams with Bohigas W, 70.265% (GBR) Intermediate I Freestyle 1st Sarah Williams with Bohigas W, 70.775% (GBR) 4th Kate Lister with World Exclusive, 68.400% (GBR) For full results click here Photo (Emma Hindle) © Keven Sparrow
Tuesday, October 9

Nettex GB PRE Associated Championships

It was the turn of the PRE, pure and part-bred Spanish horses to take the stage as the 2018 Nettex Associated Championships series arrived at Keysoe EC in Bedfordshire on 29 September. It is always exciting to watch these beautifully presented horses and the competition at Keysoe didn’t disappoint. Tasha Wakely and 10-year-old gelding, Elegido CXLVII, were on tip top form to win both Novice and Elementary titles with scores over 70%, both personal bests. Tasha, who runs a competition and sales livery, has had Elegido (pictured) for only three months. The 10-year-old is very green and had not competed before she bought him. “My mum fell in love with him and I loved his movement and temperament,” said Tasha who got hooked on PREs when she was 15 and got her first Spanish horse. “I was thrilled with him as it was his first time in an indoor arena and only his fourth ever competition.” “We had a wrong strike off in one of the simple changes but I only taught him them a couple of weeks ago! I was chuffed to bits that we got over 70% despite that. I’m beyond proud of him.” ‘Gido’ has lovely paces so they have an exciting future together. Stephen Allen was another double champion on the flamboyant grey stallion, Comico XVIII, owned by Neil and Sarah Brener. They won the Medium and were unopposed in the Advanced Medium. Stephen began riding the eight-year-old when Neil him imported a year ago from Spain. He has brought him on from Novice to Advanced Medium and has also qualified him as part of the British team at the MCI European Dressage Masters finals. “He was a bit of a handful in the warm-up but as soon as he was between the boards he shut up!” said Stephen. “It was the first time he’d been in the indoor school here and he was a bit fresh but he tried his heart out.” Comico’s scores of 69.26% in the Medium and 65% in the Advanced Medium were both personal bests for him “He’s still very green at Advanced Medium – everything has to be perfect for the changes to come off. A year ago he was very tense and had no stretch or reach but now he is much more chilled.” Comico has a very impressive medium trot now and Stephen says the horse considers it his ‘safe’ place. “He knows he’s good at it and gets praised for it, so if he gets worried about something, we go back to it.” Liza Donnelly has had her Prelim champion Entendido LXIV on loan for three months so were thrilled with their performance and made her last minute rush to qualify for the Championships worthwhile. “Nicola Crowther, his owner, offered him to me when I was short of horsepower. I hadn’t competed for over three years and just gelled with him straight away. It gave me the confidence to quickly try and qualify him for the GBPRE champs. I literally did it with two days to spare,” said Liza. “I knew nothing about the breed and quickly fell in love with his willing to work attitude and athleticism. I had no idea I had won my class, although I knew I had done a smooth test, so we undid his plaits to load him. Big mistake - I had to redo his plaits at the rate of knots for the presentation! “ The eight-year-old bay gelding has only ever done six BD competitions so is still green at shows.” I was delighted with his attitude at the championship. He felt super going into the arena and he really tried his hardest for me.” Congratulations to all the riders who took part. British Dressage thanks the team at Keysoe for a successful Championship event as well as title sponsor Nettex for their generous support of the Associated Championship series. The winners: Preliminary Liza Donnelly with Entendido LXIV, 67.08% Novice Tasha Wakely with Elegido CXLVII, 72.98% Elementary Tasha Wakely with Elegido CXLVII, 70.94% Medium Stephen Allen with Comico XXXIII, 69.26% Advanced Medium Stephen Allen with Comico XXXIII, 65.00% For full results click here Words by Helen Triggs Photo from Tasha Wakely Dressage
Saturday, October 6

Horse of the Year Show hat-trick for Dujardin

Charlotte Dujardin and Florentina VI raised the roof last night with their winning performance in the Dressage Future Elite Championship during the Horse of the Year Show at the NEC in Birmingham (3 – 7 October 2018). The Olympic dressage champion completed a Horse of the Year Show hat-trick when she won the class in dominant fashion in front of a packed out HOYS crowd. Charlotte, riding Florentina VI, posted a score of 79.12% to secure a treble and produce further evidence of her enviable string of horses in the build-up to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. A high class field also included her Great Britain colleague at the recent World Equestrian Games - Emile Faurie, and London 2012 team mate Laura Tomlinson. Second place went to Nicola Buchanan and Half Moon Dark Magic, with Becky Moody and Eureko taking third. This competition for up-and-coming horses, now in its sixth year, provides a unique opportunity to expose young horses to the big stage as well as acting as a shop window for our sport. At an event which is famed for show jumping and showing, the Andrews Bowen International Arena was jam-packed in anticipation for the dressage, testament to the popularity the sport now has within the wider equestrian community. For talented eight- to ten-year-old horses, this class is invitational based on rankings throughout the season from High Profile, Premier League and CDI shows on average percentage in Small Tour classes. The top ranked combinations are then invited to take part in an Intermediate I Freestyle competition. Eight competitors came forward last night under a top judging panel of Peter Storr (C), Andrew Gardner (H) and Stephen Clarke (M). First into the arena was Lewis Carrier who made his British team debut at the FEI Young Rider Championships in Fontainebleau this July, with his ride here, Diego V. Setting off to Western-inspired trot music, Lewis (21) rode with style and confidence, creating a picture of elegance with the 10-year-old bay son of Spielberg. The canter was assured with accurate pirouettes and three-time changes on a turn, in a lovely frame; and the walk covered much ground. Transitions were attentive throughout and they earned a creditable 71.37%. “For me the horse settled more in canter,” said Andrew Gardner, summarising the performance. “The structure of the canter was very good and it was nicely uphill. The trot could have been more elastic – the horse was a little tense, but he’s a young horse and he’ll benefit hugely from this experience.” Nicola Buchanan followed with her own and Diana Reynolds-Hale’s Half Moon Dark Magic, a nine-year-old by Dimaggio, interestingly a full brother the late Half Moon Dynasty who won here with Michael Eilberg in 2013. An instrumental adaptation of Rolling Stones’ Paint It Black accompanied the pair who performed technically demanding components with precision and panache. The big horse moved seamlessly from half passes to extended trots; two-time changes on the centre line were expressive and bold. They concluded their performance with a powerful extended trot towards the judges who awarded the pair 75.04%. “She took a lot of risk, and there was a lot of impulsion and expression,” said Stephen Clarke. “It was a very good test, and I particularly like the extended trot.” Experienced Grand Prix competitor Nikki Barker and the bay stallion Durable had a commanding presence as they came down the centre line. Riding to their Kill Bill soundtrack, Nikki and Durable who is a 10-year-old son of Spielberg and is owned by his rider and Viv Gleave, showed huge power and elasticity. Mistakes crept into the canter work but much of the work was breathtaking showing great promise for the future. They scored 70.79%. “There were lovely highlights in the extended trots. He’s an impressive, beautiful-moving horse,” said Peter Storr. Becky Moody, who is no stranger to this arena having won this class in 2015 with Carinsio, was next up with Jo Cooper’s Dutch-bred nine-year-old Eureko (by Uphill). The crowd loved their Sherlock programme and the judges were equally impressed, awarding them 74.70%. The trot segments were fluent and powerful with exemplary rhythm. The canter featured three-time and two-time changes on a turn and accurate pirouettes. “For me the music was just right and there was a certain drama,” said Andrew. “From a judging perspective, personal taste doesn’t come into it, it’s how it fits the performance that matters – and this did. “I liked the pirouettes. The horse showed ability to sit and wait and I liked that. They looked part of the canter.” At the midway point of the class, it was the turn of Alice Oppenheimer with Sarah Oppenheimer’s eight-year-old Headmore Davina (Dimaggio x Rubinstein). Entering to Supertramp’s Dreamer which all the trot was set to, the pair performed circles directly into fluent, expressive half passes the opposite way. The walk – ground covering and relaxed – preceded super canter work to Fleetwood Mac’s Tusk. The two-time changes were beautiful. “It was a really obedient performance and it all went well,” commented Peter. “She’s a lovely mare and was well presented.” Emile Faurie and a young horse he thinks a lot of, Café’s Caletta, followed Alice. The tall German-bred mare is only nine, with limited experience under her belt, but she’s an exciting future prospect her rider. Moving off in a powerful extended trot to compelling music, followed by half pass in a lovely frame and balance. In the canter there was some loss of rhythm during the pirouettes but the tempi-changes were full of quality and verve. They scored 74.54%. “She’s a lovely elegant horse and there were some really expressive parts of the test,” summarised Stephen. “Obviously she’s a bit green and there were a few errors including the pirouettes, but it’s a strong horse for the future. The elasticity and elegance is lovely.” The penultimate rider was the defending Dressage Future Elite title holder Charlotte Dujardin and the anticipation in the crowd was palpable as she rode down the tunnel on the dapple grey Florentina VI (Vivaldi x Rubels). Florentina, at eight, was one of the youngest horses in the class but nonetheless she looked very at home in the iconic arena. Starting boldly in extended trot on the centre line, they went on to show super-elastic shoulder-ins which were simply to die for, and expressive trot half passes. Riding to a Tom Hunt compilation using music from animated films The Snowman and the Snowdog and Ice Age the pair were full of class. The canter featured three-time changes, in which there was a costly error, then into a canter pirouette right, and two-time changes to a pirouette left. Rather than a response from one of the judges, this time the roving mike was taken to Carl Hester who was watching on from a seat in hospitality. “Charlotte still can’t quite count to three! This is something we’ll talk about on the way home in the car!” he quipped. “She’s a gorgeous horse. Very energetic and elegant. If you blink on the mistake, it was a wonderful piece of riding.” Up went the score – 79.12%, taking them into the lead. The final competitor of the evening was Laura Tomlinson, who was so influential in Great Britain’s medal success at London 2012. Six years on, and with two young children and another on the way, Laura’s enthusiasm for competing looks as strong as ever. She rode to a catchy Latin compilation with her father Wilfried’s lovely Fallatijn Van Kairos, an eight-year-old gelding by the same sire as Florentina, Vivaldi. The horse is a little green being new to the level but showed great energy and expression. “Laura did a great job.” said Peter. “The horse is lovely. He’s a young horse and there were green mistakes but he’s an exciting horse for the future. “We’ve seen some lovely young horses tonight. It will be exciting to see them out at Grand Prix in the future,” concluded Peter. Reflecting on her victory, Charlotte said: "This is Florentina's first real big indoor show, so she has never really been in an atmosphere like this and I wasn't sure how she was going to cope with it, but she felt really good. I am really happy. "It's great to bring horses like her here and get them used to this environment and atmosphere. It's great to be able to do that and such a great experience for her. “She’s a very brave horse, and I didn’t even do the arena walk. She’s such a soldier,” she added. “And we’re so lucky that we get to do demos such as at Your Horse Live with the young horses. It’s a very good education for them.” Talking about her music, Charlotte said; “Tom Hunt came up with it. I like to follow themes of cartoons as they’re familiar and they always tell a story.” It has been a busy schedule for the Gloucestershire-based rider in recent weeks, having claimed two bronze medals at the World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina, then travelling straight to the LeMieux National Championships in Warwickshire before arriving at Horse of the Year Show. "I have literally come home from WEG, went straight to the National Championships, and then to here. It has been non-stop, but WEG was fantastic. We weren't sure if we were going to bring home a medal, but it went better than we could have ever have thought. I have learnt so much from going to WEG. With me, dealing with different aspects of it with Valegro, there was so much pressure, and now it is about bringing on another horse. I have got a fantastic string of horses, and heading towards Tokyo I think I will have about four Grand Prix horses lined up, which is a great position to be in. It's fantastic."   Results 1st Charlotte Dujardin with Florentina VI, 79.12% 2nd Nicola Buchanan with Half Moon Dark Magic, 75.04% 3rd Becky Moody with Eureko, 74.70% 4th Emile Faurie with Café’s Caletta, 74.54% 5th Alice Oppenheimer with Headmore Davina, 73.75% 6th Laura Tomlinson with Fallatijn Van Kairos, 73.58% 7th Lewis Carrier with Diego V, 71.37% 8th Nikki Barker with Durable, 70.79% For full results including judges’ breakdown click here Photo © 1st Class Images Videos courtesy of Horse of the Year Show Audio interview courtesy of Horse of the Year Show
Monday, October 1

MCI European Championships come to the UK

The Iberian Dressage Masters (IDM) is the British organisation for the MCI, offering competitors with Iberian horses the opportunity to compete internationally against fellow Iberians at the annual European Championships. This year, for the first time ever, it is being held in Great Britain, at Bury Farm in Buckinghamshire (4 - 7 October). Following the success of Britain’s representation at the MCI finals in Belgium in 2015 and Italy in 2016, in which Team MCI GB came away with a very creditable 4th place on both occasions, last year in France Team MCI GB achieved Team Silver. The British campaign has gradually strengthened in numbers and they are “going for Gold” this year! Set up in June 2015, the IDM and MCI GB are gaining in popularity, with over 220 members and many qualifying venues throughout the UK. This year the British contingent has doubled, with a team of 50 riders and horses competing in classes ranging from Young Horse up to Grand Prix. The MCI GB series of qualifying venues, and the success of the British team last year has helped to raise the profile of Iberian horses in British dressage. "We are enormously grateful to the MCI Europe for organising such an incredible event and providing the opportunity to compete with other riders and horses across Europe and we are delighted to host the Finals and look forward to welcoming the other European nations to England," says IDM Director Karen Bourdon. "Next year we will be organising our own MCI GB National show which will also include part-breds – dates to be announced shortly." Spectator tickets at £5 per day will be available on the door. Come and support the British team and see the best Iberian horses in Europe competing at these Finals! For the full programme click here  and to view the list of competitors representing Great Britain follow this link . If you can’t attend you still can watch it through: Horse & Country TV Clip my Horse TV EQ Sportsnet in the USA OSN in the Middle East and North Africa
Monday, October 1

Dressage riders confirmed for HOYS 2018

This year’s Horse of the Year Show features the sixth running of the annual Dressage Future Elite Championship. Taking place during the evening performance on Thursday 4 October, this prestigious competition provides a platform for the UK's rising Grand Prix horses to gain invaluable experience under the spotlight at a world famous international event. In conjunction with British Dressage, the popular Championship is designed for horses between eight and ten years old. The class will feature a total of eight horse and rider combinations that will each showcase an Intermediate I Freestyle to music. For the last two years Charlotte Dujardin has taken the title; 2016 riding Hawtins Delicato scoring 78.62% and in 2017 with Mount St John Freestyle scoring 84.91%. Both horses have recently been on the world stage competing at the World Equestrian Games in Tryon, proving the worth of the Future Elite Championship at HOYS. This year Charlotte is back competing with the young grey mare Florentina; the pair have recently won the Saracen Horse Feeds Inter I Freestyle at the LeMieux National Dressage Championships 2018. Will she retain her tile this year and make it a hat-trick? The eight horse and rider combinations competing this year are: • Nikki Barker with her own and Viv Gleave’s Durable • Nicola Buchanan with her own and Diana Reynolds-Hale's Half Moon Dark Magic • Lewis Carrier with Diego V • Charlotte Dujardin with her own Florentina V • Emile Faurie with his own Café’s Caletta • Becky Moody with Jo Cooper’s Eureko • Alice Oppenheimer with Sarah Oppenheimer’s Headmore Davina • Laura Tomlinson with Dr Wilfried Bechtolsheimer’s Fallatijn Van Kairos Thursday is all about dressage at HOYS. At 2:00pm you can stop by the HOYS Live Zone in the Retail Village where Carl Hester will be doing a Q&A and rider signing ahead of his Masterclass at 4:00pm in the Andrews Bowen International Arena with Charlotte as one of the pupils. Then in the evening, visitors can watch the mesmerising young talent in the Dressage Future Elite Championship which will commence at approximately 6:10pm. There is still chance to buy tickets, head to https://www.theticketfactory.com/hoys/online/ or call 0844 581 8282.
Friday, September 28

Line-up announced for HOYS Future Elite

This year’s Horse of the Year Show at the NEC, Birmingham (3-7 October 2018) features the sixth running of the annual Dressage Future Elite Championship. Taking place during Thursday's evening performance in the Genting Arena, this prestigious competition provides a platform for the UK's rising Grand Prix horses to gain invaluable experience under the spotlight at a world famous international event. In conjunction with British Dressage, the popular Championship is designed for horses between eight and ten years old. The class will feature a total of eight horse and rider combinations who will each showcase an Intermediate I Freestyle. Last year's Future Elite was won by none other than Olympic gold medallist Charlotte Dujardin riding Mount St John Freestyle who scored an incredible 84.91%. Charlotte is back competing in the Championship again this year to defend her title, this time with Florentina V. The eight horse and rider combinations competing this year are: • Nikki Barker with her own and Viv Gleave’s Durable • Nicola Buchanan with her own and Diana Reynolds-Hale's Half Moon Dark Magic • Lewis Carrier with Diego V • Charlotte Dujardin with her own Florentina V • Emile Faurie with his ownCafé’s Caletta • Becky Moody with Jo Cooper’s Eureko • Alice Oppenheimer with Sarah Oppenheimer’s Headmore Davina • Laura Tomlinson with Dr Wilfried Bechtolsheimer’s Fallatijn Van Kairos The Dressage Future Elite Championship will commence at 6.10pm on Thursday 4 October. It can be watched via the live stream  plus we'll be posting live updates throughout the competition on Facebook , Instagram and Twitter Visitors to the show will also have the opportunity to see a Dressage Masterclass with Carl Hester during the afternoon performance on Thursday at 4.20pm. The 40-minute masterclass aims to inform and inspire the HOYS audience whilst showcasing Carl’s much admired training methods and mindful coaching skills. To find out more about the show and to buy tickets  visit the show website .
Thursday, September 27

Jump into autumn with Combined Training

With just over one week to go until the first fixture, we’re looking forward to the welcome return of the Ideal Saddles Combined Training series to the British Dressage Calendar. Open to existing members holding a minimum Club registration, this series is a great way to get a little variety into your winter calendar. If you haven’t joined yet you can still get involved, click here to visit our membership pages and sign up as a Club member for just £30. There’s no need for your horse to be registered so taking part is easy, cheap and fun! The competition format stays the same as last year, which will see tests run at Prelim and Novice levels alongside show jumping from 70cm to 100cm. Finish in the top two and you’ll be on your way to a magnificent Championship final to be held at Field House EC on 17 March 2019. Choose your class: BD dressage test                          Showjumping height Prelim 2 (2016)                             Maximum height 70cm Prelim 18 (2002)                           Maximum height 80cm Novice 24 (2010)                          Maximum height 90cm Novice 34 (2009)                          Maximum height 100cm                  Choose your venue: Venue County Date Epworth North Lincolnshire 06/10/18 Easton & Otley Norfolk 07/10/18 The Cabin Aberdeenshire 07/10/18 Colraine Cornwall 13/10/18 Bold Heath Cheshire 13/10/18 Allens Hill Worcestershire 10/11/18 Port Royal North Yorkshire 24/11/18 Bury Farm Buckinghamshire 25/11/18 Wellington Hampshire 02/12/18 Mount Ballan Monmouthshire 09/12/18 Reaseheath Cheshire 09/12/8 Moreton Dorset 28/12/18 Northallerton North Yorkshire 19/01/19 Field House Staffordshire 27/01/19 Onley Grounds Warwickshire 30/01/19 Keysoe Bedfordshire 05/02/19 Ian Stark EC Borders 09/02/19 Vale View Leicestershire 10/02/19 West Wilts Wiltshire 10/02/19 Blue Barn Kent 23/02/19 We look forward to welcoming many of you to the qualifiers over the coming months! Click here to out more about the Ideal Saddles Combined Training series.  
Monday, September 24

Nettex RoR Thoroughbred Associated Championships

The 2018 Nettex Associated Championships series continued with the turn of the Nettex RoR Thoroughbreds on Sunday 16 September 2018 at Vale View Equestrian. British Dressage was once again proud to offer this dedicated championship in association with Retraining of Racehorses. It showcases the versatility and talent of this nimble breed, best known for their speed on the racetrack, and it just goes to show what good dressage partners Thoroughbreds can make with correct and sympathetic training. 55 Weatherbys registered horses rode down the centre line at the Leicestershire venue and a new quintet of 2018 champions were crowned. Fiona Jopling from the New Forest in Hampshire achieved the highest score of the day with Alyson Hall’s Medburn Singer (by Superior Premium). The pair won the Medium title with an excellent score of 73.18% - the highest of the day. The Thoroughbred gelding, now eight, has developed into a competitive dressage horse over the past three years, following a switch to dressage due to an injury early on in his racing career. Last year he shone at the inaugural Thoroughbred Associated Championship doing the Elementary-Medium double and was also seventh in the Elementary Silver at the Nationals. Continuing this success into 2018, he and Fiona were also fourth in the TopSpec Medium Silver at the Keysoe Summer Regionals. Young Cheshire rider Emily Entwistle enjoyed a day to remember as she took not one, but two titles with the French bred gelding Tarass D’Alben (Policy Maker x Kaldoun). Emily (15) won the Preliminary with a score of 72.93% and the Novice with 67.13%. The pair have been competing in British Dressage competitions since June 2017, achieving good results in both Quest and mainstream competitions up to Novice level. Following her victory 48 hours earlier in the Nettex Thoroughbred Associated Championship, Pat Clayton once again showed her supremacy at the level by taking the RoR Intro title with Budsson on a strong score of 71.74%. And at Elementary it was Gina Scheissl and King of Arnor who had the winning edge. Gina, from Jersey, whose daughter Amy represented Great Britain at the 2016 FEI Young Rider Europeans, was awarded a score of 66.29% with the 10-year-old son of Monsun. British Dressage thanks the team at Vale View for a successful Championship event as well as title sponsor Nettex for their generous support of the Associated Championship series. Roll of Honour: Intro Pat Clayton with Budsson, 71.74% Preliminary Emily Entwistle with Tarass D’Alben, 72.93% Novice Emily Entwistle with Tarass D’Alben, 67.13% Elementary Gina Schiessl with King of Arnor, 66.29% Medium Fiona Jopling with Medburn Singer, 73.18% Photo: Fiona Jopling and Medburn Singer flanked by Donna Boyd with Rinus Star (left) and Jenny Bulman with Jimmy Hay (right). For full results click here
Sunday, September 23

Shearwater Young Dressage Horse Championships

The Shearwater Young Dressage Horse Championships are a highlight of many visiting the LeMieux National Dressage Championships and have seen many equine celebrities, both past and present, claim the titles through the years. This year’s series has without doubt been a wonderful showcase of British breeding, riding and training. Shearwater Young Dressage Horse Championships – Four-year-olds Gloucestershire-based breeder Judith Davis and her team have much to celebrate following a successful Sunday in the Shearwater Young Dressage Horse Championships for four-year-olds. The ballerina-like mare Hawtins Lirica, presented by Lucinda Elliot, was named Champion in her age group with stable mate Hawtins Fianello moving up to the reserve position following the rider judging. The Young Horse classes are a firm favourite with the Stoneleigh crowd and with star German rider/trainer Eva Möller returning to guest judge, today’s tests were a highlight once more. To add to the experience, FEI 5* judge Isobel Wessels provided a riveting commentary of the class via Radio Nationals. Isobel has many times judged the World Young Horses and next week will head to the Swedish Young Horse Championships to look at their four to seven year old horses. Isobel started the class by commending the many horses, riders and breeders who take part in the Shearwater series year after year, “Hundreds of horses come forward for this Championships, 40 go to the Semi Finals and we see only 10 at each level here so well done to all of the finalists that made it here. It’s an amazing standard.” The four finalists from Saturday’s pre-judging are each ridden by Eva Möller who adds her opinion to that of the judges panel on the ground, Ulf Möller and Maria Colliander. The first horse to be put through the magic Möller system was yesterday’s top scorer Hawtins Lirica (Lemony’s Nicket x Hawtins Delizia). The light-footed mare behaved impeccably with both her home rider Lucinda and guest rider Eva. Over Radio Nationals Isobel commented, “It’s a really nice type of horse, it wants to move through the body. This mare can control her front leg and clearly there will be a talent for piaffe and passage in the future. I like this horse, she’s very elastic and her conformation her back is a bit low – she needs to be given a lot of time to develop musculature but her trainability and expression is all there.” Finnish judge Maria Colliander provided an arena side summary of the dainty yet powerful mare, “She’s a lovely horse, very expressive and really taking the rider with her – clear paces and well balanced.” Next up for judging was SJL Baks Zacco, a handsome son of Blue Hors Don Romantic owned by Sara Lucas. Isobel Wessels praised the horse’s conformation, stating that his compact frame and well-muscled back would be highly beneficial in the future. “He’s very well developed for a large horse,” she said, “I’d like him to stretch his frame a little longer and swing more over the back. He’s a very talented horse but very different to the first horse. Every horse has different talents and different levels of development.” Maria Colliander added, “This is a very solid horse, he has a good contact, always listening with three clear paces. We’d like more freedom in the shoulders but this is something that can be improved with age, power and good riding.” Judith Davis’s second horse to be presented in the final was the eye-catching chestnut gelding Hawtins Fianello (Floriscount x Hawtins Cardinal Virtue). “Now this is a very impressive looking horse,” Isobel Wessels remarked, “This is a horse who as his engine starts to work more and the contact is taken forward can make beautiful transitions with a good connection. It’s a wonderful type - very expressive and elastic. He looks like he wants to work, gives a nice picture and in his development is secure.” The judges by the side of the arena were also duly impressed. “Here we saw a very energetic worker,” said Maria Colliander, “Ulf [Moller] says he’s a bit over motivated to be the best kid in the class – he loves his canter and that’s his pace. It’s a lovely powerful pace with good jump in the hind leg and activity.” The fourth and final horse to be presented in the four-year-old age category was Matt Frost’s G Star, by Gandhi. “The horse is a little hurried and I’d like to see him take the rein forward, swing through the back and soften,” Isobel commented, “a slightly more suspended feeling would be great. This horse’s canter is his highlight and after the canter the trot improves.” Maria concluded, “This horse is the baby of the group in comparison with the others, Eva put her finger on it that the horse needs development in the connection and the elasticity over the back. The trot needs more power but the walk is very good.” After a final consultation between the judges the final order was confirmed, Hawtins Lirica, Hawtins Fianello, SJL Baks Zacco and G-Star. Proud breeder Judith Davis can add now one more title to her vast collection from the National Dressage Championships – it was not too long ago that Carl Hester first spotted his WEG star Hawtins Delicato in the Shearwater five-year-old Championships in the same arena. Speaking about her stars of today Judith said, “It’s an amazing achievement just to make it to Sunday’s final let alone win! To have first and second is amazing, Lirica is truly special and Fianello is a very very good horse too. We produce for the long term so these horses have come here off the back of a summer break. They’ve never done anything like this so I’m very impressed. “Lirica is a very brave horse, she’s even been leading our older horses around the show ground. I was thrilled to bits with them yesterday, and today has been a dream. I’m really pleased for Bryony and Lucinda, they work so hard, they love the horses and they work very well together.” Both Judith and stable jockey Lucinda Elliot credited Serena Pincus as a large part of their success. Serena has trained the stable for just over a year and both breeder and rider were keen to sing her praises. Shearwater Young Dressage Horse Championships – Five-year-olds The impressive young stallion Izonik, produced and presented by Kerry Mackin, was this afternoon crowned the 2018 Shearwater Young Dressage Horse Five-Year-Old Champion. The exciting young stallion, who is by Zonik and out of a Jazz mare, impressed ride judge Eva Möller to maintain his first place position after yesterday’s assessment and preliminary judging. The ultimate winner – Izonik who is co-owned by his rider and Rowan Bryson - was the first in the arena for the final judging under Eva. “He’s a very impressive horse,” commented Isobel Wessels. Looking at him it’s difficult to believe he’s just five. He’s well-muscled with a lot of propulsive power, and he has gears. He creates a lovely picture of ease and elasticity, and has a lot of airtime in canter. Co-commentator John Bowen said; “He’s a lovely horse, a super type. He presents a lovely picture and is very elegant. He’s maybe a little weak in the middle but he will develop into a super horse. He looks a little tired in the hind leg today, but he’s already competed in the Novice and Elementary classes here. Also, you cannot underestimate the pressure of staying away from home and how tiring it is for the horses.” Maria Colliander, who judged the Shearwater Young Horse Championships alongside Eva and Ulf Möller, summarised; “We saw a horse with absolutely clear paces. The walk is a highlight, the trot absolutely in rhythm. He could maybe have been a little sharper behind, but the canter is big and nicely balanced. He could have a little more connection over the back, but he did respond well to Eva’s questions. Next up was Nikki Barker with Sara Lucas’s Iwan, a gelding by Charmeur. “He’s a beautiful horse with a lot of expression,” said Isobel, “though he’s not always on the hind leg enough, yet. I like him - he’s a very good horse. Nikki is a good rider and she’ll have a super horse to ride and train! “He’s not as smooth as Izonik, but he’s incredibly uphill. He manages the smaller circles very well and is ‘thinking’ about a flying change. He has a tendency to go away, rather than stay on the hind leg, but in a few years the extended canter will eat up the ground. He’s just looking a little for Eva to help him." Maria Colliander commented; “That was very nice to watch. We saw a horse with a nice forward attitude. He likes his work and is willing to go. The trot is rhythmical, the canter has a lovely jump, and the walk is clear. Third in was Kiss and Tell, presented by Matthew Baker and owned by Roland Tong, on only the horse’s third show. Isobel said; “He certainly has the x-factor. He has a huge engine. He’s a bit behind the others due to a year out, but he’s a lovely horse. He has a very nice knee action, is very active with the qualities for Grand Prix. He throws himself away a little in the canter transition, but once she [Eva] has him, it’s a powerful canter with lots of airtime. You need quickness with power, and this horse has it. He now just needs a bit more suspension which will come with self-carriage. It’s a lovely picture and he looks like a treasure of a horse to me. In my case, I call it the ‘teddy bear factor’!" Maria commented; “He was a positive chap. He wanted to do what Eva wanted him to do. He has a big canter. I’d like to see a slightly sharper hind leg in canter but he has clear paces with a good relaxed walk.” The final horse forward was Amy Woodhead and Hero. “This is another huge horse,” said Isobel. “The natural balance is not quite as good as the others, the nodding in canter is indicative of that and he could be more ‘through’ in the body.” Maria commented; “He’s five-years-old and a little like a teenager. He has quality in all his paces but could by nature have a bit more go, be more in front of the rider.” So the final order was announced: 1st Izonik, 2nd Iwan, 3rd Kiss and Tell, 4th Hero. “It’s been such an amazing journey,” beamed Kerry Mackin who has produced the horse from the very start. “He’s been an absolute perfect gentleman, the whole way through our journey.” “It’s quite emotional for me as it’s my last ride on him,” said Kerry who relinquishes the ride and ownership to his current co-owner Rowan Bryson. “He’s an incredible horse with an incredible brain and I just couldn’t be happier today. “I’m so happy that the judges thought he’d come on so much since last year [when reserve four-year-old champion], as I haven’t had any training on him. I’ve done it all myself and not even had one lesson on him,” said Kerry. “He’s a lovely horse. At home he’s dead chilled. The only thing we all cringe at is that when you put him in the stable, he rolls like mad!” she laughed. “So he’s a bit of a dinosaur in the stable, but apart from that he’s easy. With his training he never says no, he tries everything and he gave everything yesterday in that test, probably one of the best extensions he’s ever done. He’s a big boy and it’s taken him time to gain strength, but he’s incredible. I’m ecstatic.” Shearwater Young Dressage Horse Championships – Six-year-olds A competitive six-year-old Championship saw Charlotte Dujardin take on two mares who’ve visited the World Breeding Championships for Young Horses plus an impressive rising star from the Headmore Stud. An intense battle resulted in a win for Charlotte with her own and Carl Hester’s Hawtins San Floriana, who displayed the same quality today that gifted her both the four and the five year old titles previously to complete her set in style. In front of a knowledge crowd, Amy Woodhead’s ride MSJ Zonetta went first under the expert guidance of Eva Moller. “The canter needs to jump through more and show a little more ground cover and uphill tendency,” Isobel said over Radio Nationals. “The expression is getting better and better, Eva gave the horse plenty of time to get going in order to find out more. The hind leg reaches more and more under the body and she is improving through her core.” Maria Colliander delivered the judges verdict: “Here we see another Zonik offspring with a very big and good walk. I think that at the beginning the horse lacked a little bit of enthusiasm to listen to the rider but she responded well and Eva mad a big difference. The walk is big and clear, the trot has perhaps a small tendency to hurry at the start but is in rhythm, the canter could perhaps be a bit more under from behind with more shoulder freedom but the horse shows a clear ability to collect.” “Next we see a really classy horse, but she’s not always perfect – she can be a little short in the next and too hot to handle,” Isobel said of Hawtins San Floriana, Carl Hester and Charlotte Dujardin’s outstanding daughter of San Amour. “The croup can also come a little high at times, that said she oozes class and character, combined with endless energy and elasticity. The mare wants to go, she doesn’t want to hang about! Eager to go and eager to please.” The mare, another bred by Judith Davis of Hawtins Stud, is a descendent of foundation mare State Premium World Finest who is also the grandmother of Hawtins Delicato… talent clearly runs in the family! Reiterating Isobel’s points, the judges said “Well, I have to say we liked watching this! It’s an impressive looking mare with a lot of stage presence, all three paces are absolutely clear. If the walk in the first qualifier was tense, today it was clear and nicely relaxed in the end. The trot has a wide range to come and go and the canter shows underlined clear ability to collect! She’s really willing and ambitious, at times this takes over with a little tension but it’s a very nice horse.” “This mare looks nice with little Eva on board!” Isobel commented on Sara Gallop’s BKS Fantasia, the third horse to be assessed in the six-year-old category. “The picture is really nice, Eva will try to get the horse more over the top line and ask to be allowed in a bit more. The trot can be a bit edgy but the horse accepts the aids willingly.” BKS Fantasia is a delightful black mare by Furstenball standing at 15.3hh, “this little lady’s got big presence and big movement” the commentary team at Radio Nationals cooed. Maria Colliander contributed, “We see here a really very pretty, feminine, light-footed horse. She’s energetic with an active hind leg, listening to the rider her energy can take over a bit! The rhythm can get a bit hectic, but it’s a nice horse with three workable paces.” Belissimo M is renowned for producing nice horses with nice character, Alice Oppenheimer’s mare Headmore Bella Ruby certainly lives up to the reputation. “Headmore stud have bred some wonderful wonderful horses, Bella Ruby looks a little tired today but we’ve got to remember that the weather and staying away in temporary stables does have an effect on these young horses.” Isobel continued, “The back can tighten a little and she could carry herself up and out a bit more with the neck, but she’s a beautiful horse.” Commenting on the final horse of the Shearwater Young Horse Championships Maria Colliander said, “She’s a nice horse with three clear paces, we’d like her to work more from behind with a more supple connection to bring the forehand up in trot. The canter has a strong jump, the trot was in a nice rhythm with ability to collect and extend. She could show more freedom in walk. It’s a horse willing to work with the rider, but otherwise she did listen and she did work for Eva.” With the class complete, the prestigious title was awarded to Charlotte Dujardin and Hawtins San Floriana, BKS Fantasia moved up a spot from the pre-judging assessment to take the reserve spoils whilst MSJ Zonetta claimed third. In her prize-giving interview Charlotte expressed just how much she thinks of her brilliant horse, “She’s a Rolls Royce! She’s so smooth and elastic, and she’s got so much character. I can’t ask for much more than this horses, she is amazing.” The win saw the curtains close on an immense week for Charlotte, speaking about how valuable the LeMieux National Championships experience is she said “I don’t think there’s another show in the world that’s as electric as this show. There’s a lot happening here, you’ve got flags, you’ve got tents flapping, you’ve got horses moving around you all the time, you’ve got applause in your tests. We don’t get to go anywhere else where you have that. The horses have to learn to deal with the pressure of this sort of environment so being here with the young ones is great.” Charlotte thanked Sadie Smith and Katie Bailey once more for keeping the horses running throughout the World Equestrian Games, as well as all the team behind the scenes for their support. “I had two days to prepare and as the week’s gone on the horses have got better and better – I’m a perfectionist so whilst my preparation wasn’t ideal I’ve been so pleased with the horses and the results.” British Dressage thanks official insurance partners Shearwater for their continued support of this prestigious series.  
Sunday, September 23

Day four: LeMieux National Championships

It’s been four days of extremely high standard sport at Stoneleigh Park and with over 1600 tests ridden, the LeMieux National Dressage Championships continue to be the pinnacle of the BD calendar. British Dressage congratulates all who took part in this year’s Championships. Thanks go to the generous sponsors of this event, to Kelvin and Kate Bywater plus all the team at Show Direct, to the vast team of judges, scorers, stewards, test sheet runners and to the many more who work tirelessly behind the scenes to make the week an event for all to enjoy. Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold It was a Charlotte Dujardin whitewash in the Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold on the final day. Four rides, four top five placings, quite the strike rate. The victor of the quartet was her final ride in the class, the Vivaldi sired seven year old mare Mount St John VIP, owned by Emma Blundell with an astonishing score of 81.21%. She set the early pace with Gio, her Apache x Tango seven year old with a 79.34% and Michael Eilberg gave it a good shot with another of Mount St John Stud’s talented seven year olds, Valencia with 75.5%. However the third of Charlotte’s rides, then slotted into third, Brioso II, owned by Carl Hester while River Rise Nisa, whom Charlotte owns jointly with Sarah Tyler Evans who also bred the mare, finished fifth behind Michael. VIP certainly impressed the judge at B, Debbie Jones who awarded 13 marks more than any of her fellow panel. Charlotte said; “I’m really pleased with her. I think she got a similar score at Somerford Regionals. This level for her at seven is pretty easy, she just went in there and did it; everything felt so smooth and easy. Her extensions are amazing, her canter work has improved from last year, the flying changes are super; she’s just a feisty, go-ey little number! I just love her and she shows incredible talent for Grand Prix. I was very happy when I came out as I couldn’t have asked for any more.” She was also full of praise for her runner up, Gio; “I love my little pumpkin pie! Warming him up, he just puts a smile on my face. Everyone that sees him says that horse is so amazing and I just say ‘yup!’ He probably would have won if his medium and extended trot was better. There’s more to come there. He has so much more power there and he’s so talented for the Grand Prix work. The piaffe and passage is just out of this world and he’s brave as an ox. His little ears are always forward and he feels so happy when you ride him; I just love him to bits.” Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold It was an extremely close affair in the Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold Championships with all of the top twelve competitors finishing on 70% plus scores but it was East Lothian rider Jo Barry who took the spoils. Jo had two chances at the title having qualified Hidalgo II whom she jointly owns with Lady Hope and Gordon Grainger’s Goofy La Perle. 71% with Hidalgo gave Jo a ninth place rosette but stable mate Goofy La Perle (Belissimo M x Jazz) claimed his second title of the year with a fabulous 73.5%. Local rider Rebecca Hughes was a very close second with Alison Croft’s Tantoni Dallaglio on 73.12% with Ashley Jenkins completing the podium on 72.81% with His Highness, owned by Jamie Reynolds and Cherry Elvin. Goofy La Perle was acquired for Jo to ride by Gordon Grainger whose wife went to her for help with her showing Connemara ponies. “We’ve had Goofy just over one year. The Graingers were inspired to buy a dressage horse for me, having seen my determination after the accident [Jo sustained a serious head injury in a riding accident in December 2014]. They wanted to help me on my way and kindly offered to buy a horse for me.” “And it’s been quite a fairy tale with Goofy,” reflected Jo. “We won the PDS Saddles Elementary Freestyle Gold at Hartpury and now he has won here. That’s his Elementary career finished now. It’s been a fantastic introduction for them [the Graingers] to dressage.” “I was pleased as punch with Hidalgo’s test too,” said Jo. “He was a bit scared in his Novice test due to the weather so for him to come back with more confidence for the Elementary was very pleasing. I’m so happy with them both!” Horse Health Grand Prix Freestyle The Horse Health Grand Prix Freestyle – arguably the jewel in the LeMieux National Championships crown – played out under sunny skies at Stoneleigh Park on the final day of competition. Nine top quality combinations stepped forward to contest the Championship, with seven of those scoring over the magic 70% barrier. The event wasn’t without it’s surprises as title favourite Gareth Hughes unfortunately had to retire Rebecca Hughes’ and Julia Hornig’s Classic Briolinca as the talented mare struggled to cope with the atmosphere in an electric Horse Health arena. Although a sad outcome for the team, the decision was undoubtedly a demonstration of true horsemanship at it’s finest. WEG team reserve Lara Butler capitalised on her time in the ring and rode a supreme test on board Dr Wilfried Bechtolsheimer’s Rubin Al Asad. Their thrilling freestyle earned them a total score of 77.07%, giving them the Horse Health Grand Prix Freestyle Champion title and the overall LeMieux Grand Prix National Champion title to boot. In a test full of highlights, Lara and ‘Rufus’ truly showed their quality. Set to a routine including tracks from Dire Straits, the duo showed flowing trot half passes, punchy extended trots and neat double pirouettes. “It’s been a long time coming!” Lara commented in her prize giving interview, “I’ve tried three or four times and been reserve a couple of times too! It was really unfortunate for Gareth today, I feel really sorry for him - it must have been very tough. But, I produced a good test so I’m pleased the judges were happy and rewarded me with a good mark. I feel like we earnt it as well!” The sixteen-year-old gelding by Rubin Royal will now enjoy a break before perhaps heading to Olympia in December, “It’s so nice to finish off the outdoor season here and to prove that we’re such a strong partnership is great, I couldn’t ask for any more. We’ll have another shot at the team next year, he feels so fit and fresh and he keeps getting better.” Second place went to last year’s overall champion Hayley Watson-Greaves with the spritely Rubins Nite. The experience combination showed their characteristic extended trots alongside some other super high quality work to be awarded with 75.15% for a lovely routine. Sonnar Murray-Brown and Erlentanz showed huge potential for the future in today’s test, using none other than Valegro’s emotive How to train your dragon programme to great effect they scored 73.92% for third place. For full results, click here .   
Sunday, September 23

Notes from the 2018 AGM

The Annual General Meeting of British Dressage was held on Thursday 20 September at the Oak Tree, Stoneleigh Park.  The results of the formal business are as follows; The following were proposed as Ordinary Resolutions: 1. To elect the Judges Director. There were no objections so Peter Storr is duly elected. 2. To elect the Para Director. There were no objections so Julie Frizzell is duly elected. 3. To elect the Finance Director. The election was managed independently by MiVoice who reported the following; there were 1576 votes. Caroline Godfrey 844 votes and David Fawcus 732 votes. Caroline is duly elected. 4. To receive the Financial Statements of British Dressage for the year ended 31 December 2017 and the Directors’ and Auditors’ Reports thereon. KPMG reported no significant audit issues and that in their opinion the accounts were a true and fair account of 2017. 5. To appoint KPMG as the auditors of British Dressage and to authorise the Board to fix their remuneration. One vote was received against the motion was carried in line with due process. Special Business The following resolutions were proposed as Special Resolutions: 6. To elect Linda Whetstone, recommended by the Board, as the Chairman to hold office until the date of the 2019 AGM. Unanimously carried. 7. That the draft articles of association submitted to the meeting and for the purpose of identification signed by the Chairman thereof be and the same are hereby approved and adopted as the articles of association in substitution for and to the exclusion of all the existing articles of association of British Dressage. Unanimously carried. Click here for a pdf of the Directors' presentations. Full minutes will be released in due course. 
Sunday, September 23

Wells makes does the Grade V double at WEG

Sophie Wells brought her FEI World Equestrian Games campaign to a close on a high by completing the para grade V golden double with and her ride, C Fatal Attraction, owned by Charlotte Hogg with a huge performance which earned a score of 80.755%. It was her career fourth Individual world gold. Speaking after her test, a delighted Sophie said; “He was a little bit tense today and on edge but he’s come out this week and given me everything. “I was a little bit stressed last night as I thought it may be too difficult and we have only done it once at Hartpury but he’s come out today made me very proud. “When you miss out on an Individual Gold [WEG 2014] after training everyday it’s hard, but to achieve this after a big gap like I’ve had is amazing; that’s why Rio [Olympic Games 2016] was so special because I missed out on the gold in London [Olympic Games 2012] too.” Commenting on Great Britain’s success, she added; “The British team are amazing and it’s so hard to get on the team and selection is a massive hurdle that you have to overcome. We have a lot of good riders with a lot of horse power and we’re seeing that more across the world – yesterday [the team competition] proved that. The standard of the riders, the training and the horses is amazing for the sport and it makes proud to be a part of it - but that means you have to fight.” The Grade III class brought the para competition to a close and after a Canadian horse didn’t pass this morning’s horse inspection, Erin Orford was promoted up the order and gained a place to compete alongside Natasha Baker. Drawn second to go Erin looked brimming with confidence with Annabel Whittet’s Dior to produce a test worthy of 71.073%. It was then the turn of Natasha Baker with Mount St John Equestrian’s nine year old Mount St John Diva Dannebrog who, after a silver in the individual test and topping the team test, were amongst the favourites for a medal. The test started brightly but then on a turn up the centreline away from the judge at C, ‘Diva’ took fright and put in a huge buck and leap which, having no strength in her legs, deposited poor Tash on the floor, resulting in elimination. Fortunately it was only her pride which was hurt as she left the arena on her trusty scooter, waving to the crowd. So it wasn’t to be for Natasha on the final day but Erin finished in a very credible fifth spot in the Freestyle on her World Championship debut. That brings the para dressage to an end and it’s four medals for Britain to bring home after days of competition which witnessed courageous riding, epic determination and plenty of inspirational performances. Safe trip home everyone! For full freestyle results – click here  
Saturday, September 22

Day three: LeMieux National Championships

Super Saturday at the LeMieux National Championships didn’t fail to disappoint as Britain’s finest future horses battled for elusive places in the Shearwater Young Horse Finals, as well as the TopSpec Medium Gold title. Spectators were treated to an exciting start to the LeMieux Grand Prix Championships, an ever-popular Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Freestyle plus an educational Master Class with Anna Ross and a debut Nationals performance from Atkinson Action Horses. TopSpec Medium Gold The start list for this morning’s TopSpec Medium Gold featured a wealth of highly talented combinations, the class providing a big draw for spectators at the Stoneleigh Showground. With no fewer than 13 combinations breaching the 70% barrier, the class was a super competitive affair, with the top two still achieving a clear lead. One of the hot favourites going into the competition was Charlotte Dujardin who already has two titles under her belt this week. With her own and Carl Hester’s Hawtins San Floriana, a San Amour x Florestan six-year-old, she certainly delivered, scoring a fantastic 78.45% for first with Michael Eilberg and Mount St John Valencia second on 77.18%. About her tests Charlotte commented: “Well… I did the six-year-old test first today and she was very hot, a bit lit up with all the atmosphere! I worked her a bit more for the medium and if anything I did a bit too much. It was a good test but a little under-powered. She’s six-years-old doing only her third or fourth medium so again for a six-year-old to come here and do it all in this atmosphere – which is quite difficult – is amazing." When asked how Hawtins San Floriana stacks up against the rest of her incredible string she added, “She’s probably right at the top, she’s really special to ride. She’s so smooth through her body, everything moves, everything is so elastic and loose. It’s all so easy to her and she makes you smile every time you ride her.” Michael Eilberg, who was not only second with Mount St John Valencia, but also seventh with Atterupgaards 02 (71.27%) commented; “It was a very competitive class, but then, I think all the classes here are quite competitive, in all the levels - it’s really good news for the sport. “[In the TopSpec Medium Gold] Charlotte and I were a little bit out there with those two. The horse I rode in there today, Mount St John Valencia, she’s a real special one. She gives you a great feeling and she’s such a fun horse to ride. She’s a little bit sensitive, you have to ride her with a bit of feel and it’s taken a little while to gain the partnership and confidence,” he said. Talking about his test, Michael said; “What I loved about today is that from start to finish she [Valencia] kept breathing, she was more relaxed through the whole test. In the past she’s had moments of brilliance then spoilt it with a spook, or a moment of overdoing something. To be fair, the last few tests I’ve done with her, I’ve had really nice rides. To carry it out at a show like this, with this atmosphere, it was great to know.” LeMieux Grand Prix Gold Championship It may have been a 20 mile journey to a Championship rather than the 3000 mile one he was hoping for at the beginning of the season but the trip was a profitable one for Gareth Hughes today as he took the LeMieux Grand Prix title with Rebecca Hughes’s Classic Briolinca. In one of the most competitive classes of the show, Gareth earlier posted 70.4% with his first ride KK Woodstock, owned by the Kroll’s which set the early pace. Fellow World Equestrian Games reserve rider Lara Butler then knocked him off the top spot with the Bechtolsheimer’s Rubin Al Asad, 2017 winners of this class, with a score of 72.58%. A few horses later, Gareth then came in with Briolinca and produced a crisp, lively test with her trademark piaffe and passage work really impressing the judging panel of Stephen Clarke (E), Peter Storr (H), Elke Ebert (C), Maria Colliander (M) and Nicky Barratt (B) who duly awarded an average score of 74.3% for the lead. New Grand Prix sensations Sonnar Murray-Brown and Erlentanz followed immediately and looked to be on course to challenge for the lead but a final score of 70.58% meant they couldn’t quite match Gareth. The final rider was reigning National Champion Hayley Watson-Greaves with her own WG Rubins Nite and the duo were in fine form but again, just couldn’t match Gareth. 69.62% was the score which left them fourth overall, some 4.3% behind the winner. “She’s had a great year but a foot abscess after Bolesworth must have been an influence on selection so it wasn’t to be. I was out in Tryon and exceptionally proud to see them win the medal. I guess you could say this is a great consolation prize for not making the trip! I was really happy with her today; she’s not been out since Bolesworth and being out in Tryon training two teams, I haven’t done a lot of preparation with her ahead of today,” said a delighted Gareth. “It’s a big atmosphere in there and she’s proved she can do it; I’m really proud of her,” he concluded. Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Freestyle  For the second consecutive year Charlotte Dujardin was crowned champion in the Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Freestyle. Her win with her own Florentina, taking the tally to three over two days, also added the Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Supreme Champion title to her immense National Championships collection. Today’s freestyle test saw the combination earn 76.67% from the experienced panel consisting of Sandy Phillips, Jenny Ward, Sarah Pidgley, Penelope Lang and David Trott. Speaking about her Supreme Champion wonder horse Charlotte said, “Flora was a bit tired today but I was still pleased. We had no real mistakes and just the fact that she goes in there and she delivers every time is special. She’s very consistent and has also dealt very well with me being away which proves her consistency.” Known for her ability to ‘wing it’ in a freestyle, today Charlotte proved her talent once again, “It was actually designed for En Vogue!” she said about her music created by talented composer Tom Hunt. “I just pinched it! I don’t have freestyles for all these horses and I’m never organised enough to get anything done, I just borrow what I can.” Looking ahead to the final day of competition, Charlotte concluded "I'm looking forward to tomorrow. I've got four in the Equine Construction Advanced Medium so it's going to be a busy day!" Second place in the competitive Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I final went to Hannah Biggs with her own Don Caledonia (Don Schufro x What a Lark), whilst Alice Oppenheimer continued to build on her great form to claim the third spot with her mother Sarah's eight-year-old Headmore Davina (Dimaggio x Rubinsteena). Click here for full results.  
Saturday, September 22

Nettex Thoroughbred Championships

The second running of the Thoroughbred Associated Championships, sponsored by Nettex, took place last Sunday (14 - 15 September) at Vale View Equestrian in Leicestershire. The Championships, which are designed for all Thoroughbred horses including those who’ve never raced, saw dozens of representatives forward to vie for the five national titles on offer, at levels from Intro to Medium. Event rider Emma Beresford took home the Elementary title with her 15-year-old gelding, Prince Keel (pictured). Emma (27) who has evented successfully up to 2* level, and interestingly in 2015 had a spell riding Andalusian horses in a travelling circus, scored 69.83%. “Prince Keel, 2018 Nettex Thoroughbred Championships Elementary Champion,” said Emma on Facebook. “Thank you to class sponsors Nettex for a great champs and lovely goodie bags of prizes. “[I] Love this horse so much, after a mystery field injury three weeks ago we were only sure he was sound and going to make it to the champs on Monday and after hurting my back yesterday we nearly didn't! Sitting trot was torturous! “Thank you so much to my wonderful vet Tim Beauregard and physio Rachael. He made it and I'm so glad he did! He also went on to take third in the Medium. I'm so lucky to have a fantastic support team.” The Intro title went to Pat Clayton (64) from Spalding in Lincolnshire with her 12-year-old gelding Budsson. The pair earned a score of 70.87%. Trained by BD’s para director Julie Frizzell, of Dressage Coaching UK, who took to Facebook to say; “[I’m] Bursting with pride. Pat Clayton, who I’ve had the absolute pleasure to coach for several years now, with her amazing Buddy, [their] first affiliated ever and this happens. No greater honour than to be entrusted with coaching and developing talent - no matter what our age or challenges. “A huge told you so moment and this really could not have happened to a nicer, more deserving, humble and giving person.” The Prelim title was won by Janine Robertson (34) from Reading and Bijou Lucy. Janine and her six-year-old mare scored 68.65%. The pair has been competing affiliated for less than a year, with just eight competition starts so far. Leicestershire rider Katy Ferrari (40) and her 10-year-old gelding Sirius Chesnut triumphed at Novice, scoring 69.17%. The combination started competing at Novice last year, achieving scores of up to 73% whilst Steph Cason (29) from Newmarket in Suffolk took Medium honours with the 14-year-old gelding Harland on 66.22%. The pair has been competing together for four years now and was placed second at Medium in the Petplan Equine Area Festival at Brook Farm in Essex earlier this year. British Dressage thanks the team at Vale View for a successful Championship event as well as title sponsor Nettex for their generous support of the Associated Championship series. Nettex Thoroughbred Associated Championships Roll of Honour Intro Pat Clayton with Budsson, 70.87% Prelim Janine Robertson with Bijou Lucy, 68.65% Novice Katy Ferrari with Sirius Chestnut, 69.17% Elementary Emma Beresford with Prince Keel, 69.83% Medium Steph Cason with Harland, 66.22% For full results click here .
Friday, September 21

Paras take team silver in WEG

The record breaking unbeaten run of Britain’s para dressage team has finally come to an end in a nail-biting finish at the end of two amazing days of team tests at the FEI World Equestrian Games. It was the quartet from the Netherlands who will go down in the history books as the team who finally toppled Britain but it was by the smallest of margins, just 0.65% and the team will be celebrating the silver with great pride in the knowledge they gave their all. On day one of the team tests (Thursday), Nottinghamshire’s Sophie Wells threw the gauntlet down with a personal best of 77.233%when first to go in the Grade V. It was a beautifully executed test with not a mark wasted. A delighted Sophie said; “I am so happy with him; I love him to bits. I knew I needed to up my game from the other day for the team. I had a look at my test with my coaches and looked at different areas; I gave him a 20 minute stretch because I wanted to leave it all in the tank for today and luckily it worked.” Going first for the team brings added stress and Sophie added; “You learn to deal with the pressure and I just focused on what I needed to do. We worked so hard over the winter and he’s come out a different horse this year. All the other nations are getting so much stronger and the horse power is incredible in the sport. We want to retain our title but we can only do the best that we can do.” It was then Grade II Sir Lee Pearson, with his and Mr and Mrs D Pearson’s Styletta, who retired in the individual test after the nine year old was struggling with the heat and atmosphere. A check by the support team and a short schooling session proved she was fit and well to continue. Lee used every ounce of his vast Championship experience to nurse his young charge round for a very respectable confirmed score of 71.606% which gave Britain a second good score in the club house. Afterwards Lee said; “I was not worried about the placing today, I rode calmly and passionately in there, and said thank you to her on every transition. I’m over the moon; it’s not the highest score in the world, and not the way I can ride, but the way I should have ridden today. “She’s been brilliant here, with the environment, with the arenas – I thought she would be petrified, but she hasn’t and I do believe that she will be a fantastic championship horse for the future.” Day two of the team competition dawned bright and sunny and it was down our Grade III riders to battle it out for a medal First up was Natasha Baker MBE, with the Mount St John Stud’s nine year old Mount St John Diva Dannebrog and, despite their relative inexperience as a partnership – WEG is just their third international together, nailed a personal best of 74.118% to give Britain a fighting chance. An ecstatic Natasha said; “I don’t even know what to say, I’m still shaking; she was absolutely amazing. I’m just so, so, proud of her. Everything was just so much better, she went in there with so much more confidence today. I was much more confident today; it hit me a little bit [the pressure], but she just felt so good that it didn’t matter. I just felt so much more prepared going in there today; we got the halts, and just so, so happy. If that’s what we can do after seven months then in another year’s time, she’s just going to grow even more in confidence. I absolutely adore that horse.” Natasha’s score was enough to beat her main rival Rixt van der Horst which gave some breathing space from the Netherlands who we were neck and neck with going in to the final riders. The calculators were working overtime and it looked like our final combination, Erin Orford and Annabel Whittet’s Dior needed a PB score over 72.25% to clinch a gold. The duo gave it their all with Erin working hard to get the best from the Dimaggio mare and when the final score was posted…69.029%. Just short of the mark which gave us a hard fought silver. Erin said; “I was so proud of her. I had hoped we’d done enough but unfortunately the scores weren’t on our side. She had a bit of stage-fright on Wednesday, but today I was really pleased, I couldn’t have asked any more of her, we went in there and gave it everything.” So a 22 year run comes to an end but the standards, quality and professionalism in para dressage have ridden considerably in its history and Britain has been at the forefront with others chasing. We have many new names coming up, both equine and human, so the future is full of promise to get back where we were.  The mission in Tryon was to secure Olympic qualification and a team medal so both objectives achieved. Para Director Julie Frizzell commented; “It’s been an inspiring two days to see our riders under microscopic scrutiny with the world’s eyes on them. I couldn’t be more proud of the dedication, teamwork and tenacity of our riders and the team involved to support the athletes, both human and equine. For decades we’ve worked relentlessly to constantly raise the standards so a silver medal is an outstanding achievement. After two exceptionally competitive days and four tests, to finish 0.6% behind a Dutch team who all rode to their maximum potential, is something to be proud of and paints and incredibly bright future for the next generation of our para riders and horses.” Full results – click here Photo copyright Jon Stroud The riders will be in action on Saturday in the Freestyle – we’ll update you with times as soon as they’re available via social media.
Friday, September 21

Day two: LeMieux National Championships

High winds and showers continued into day two of the LeMieux National Championships at Stoneleigh, but this didn't detract from a fabulous second day of top class dressage.  Saracen Horse Feeds Inter I Charlotte Dujardin completed the Small Tour double today with her stunning grey mare, Florentina, when they topped a highly competitive Saracen Horse Feeds Inter I Championship. They were of course victors in yesterday’s Fairfax SaddlesPrix St Georges Championship. Despite ‘Flora’ being out of the show ring since June with Charlotte’s busy summer calendar, the pair have quickly found their competition stride and no one would bet against them taking tomorrow’s Freestyle and the Saracen Horse Feeds Supreme Champion title. Charlotte was clearly delighted with her mare’s work today’s challenging conditions; “There was lots of blowing and flapping in there but she wasn’t bothered and was incredibly brave. Today she was more consistent but we did have an issue in the halt and rein back but otherwise, I’m really pleased with her. There’s not another show in the world that gives an atmosphere like this one and if you go well here, you know you have a good horse. “I’ve had her since she was two and in the early days, it felt like a long wait until she’d be competing but it’s scary how quickly the time has gone; she’s been incredible and has such a fantastic temperament,” the Gloucestershire rider said. Charlotte bought Flora from a Brightwells sale and for the first time, Brightwells will be hosting a sale on Saturday night of around twenty foals selected by the Anglo European Studbook so it could be a chance for someone to pick up a future Stoneleigh champion at Stoneleigh! In a close battle for the remaining podium places, it was two further Carl Hester pupils who won through. Runners up place went to Hannah Biggs with her own Britsh-bred Don Caledonia on 71.44% and Katie Bailey, riding Leslie Forlee’s Bocelli IV completed the top three on a score of 71.21%. Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver   Self-employed Dorset rider Danielle Rhodes topped a great few weeks with a win in the Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver Championship with Denise Kersley’s stunning Jannick. Just last weekend they were crowned the Nettex CHAPS champions at Novice level at Bury Farm and in a quick turnaround headed to Warwickshire. First to go after lunch, Danielle rode a powerful test with the pinto cross Friesian and despite a blip in one canter transition, judges Fiona Lace, Penelope Lang and Jane Peberdy were suitable impressed to award 72.43%. “He’s amazing – just fabulous!” said Danelle. “We had a hiccup when he struck off on the wrong leg in canter…twice and I’m gutted about that but it was his best trot work ever. I really wanted to do well today and I rode for the win; it’s such a high standard here. We’ve made real progress together in the last few months and he just loves to be in between the white boards. The work we’ve done and recent big events have definitely given him the mental capacity to deal with today. I’m over the moon with him!” she concluded. Danielle headed to Dorset some four years ago and started working with race horse trainer Paul Nichols to earn some money while she built up her client base and one of her first was Denise, who also owns prolific traditional gypsy cob stallion Tiger Tim. Danielle was also head girl for Irish event rider Austin O’Connor but declared dressage was definitely her first choice discipline these days. The duo's championship season continues as they head to the Petplan Equine Area Festival Finals next Friday. Just behind in second spot was Charlotte-Elizabeth Barber and CE Florioso on 72.03% and third went to Katie Lawrence riding Donaulied with 70.67%. TopSpec Medium Silver This afternoon, beneath bright, blustery skies, the TopSpec Medium Silver title was won in convincing style by LeMieux National Championship newcomer Nathalie Wahlund. On her Championship debut, she rode an assured and expressive test aboard Oldencraig Echo O to head the class with a score of 70.83% from judges Pam Bushell (E), Judy Firmston-Williams (H), Jennie Loriston-Clarke (C), Sara Jane Lanning and (M) Mary-Anne Horn (B). “I’m so happy and today was so much fun,” said Nathalie, clearly delighted with their result. “It’s a first Nationals for me and Echo so I’m super happy! He was maybe a bit tense to begin with, just before he went in, but once inside the arena he grew in confidence. He was just really good and there were no mistakes - it was a clear round and the trot work felt fantastic.” Oldencraig Echo O (by Zjengis Khan) is a nine-year-old Dutch gelding owned by Penny Brinsley, and has been ridden by 21-year-old Nathalie for the past 18 m0nths. Nathalie originates from Sweden and works as a rider at Oldencraig Equestrian in Surrey where she trains with British Olympian Vicky Thompson-Winfield and is gaining much competition experience aboard the centre’s horses. “Vicky is a great trainer and I wouldn’t be able to do any of this without her.” Echo is described as 'super fun to ride'. "He loves to work and he can go on forever. He’s a real worker and is a very sweet horse. We put a lot of work in so it’s very satisfying to get this reward." Looking to the future, Nathalie says; “I would like to start PSG this year, then maybe next year do some Premier Leagues.” Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold The Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold Championship final is always a good class to watch and this year was no exception. A competitive line up of horses, with an average age of five-and-a-half, came forward and the quality was high. The clear winner however was Alex Hardwick with her mother Sally’s diminutive Uphill-sired gelding, Glasgow MH. World Class Podium Potential rider Alex and the gorgeous seven-year-old were awarded a score of 73.14% ahead of Dannie Morgan and Headmore Figaro (71.85%) and Alice Oppenheimer with Headmore Bella Ruby (71.40%) in third. “He’s the most unbelievable, unflappable horse,” said Alex, clearly delighted. “He’s such a cool dude and I think he just proves that size really doesn’t matter. He might be only 16 hands but he can trot like an 18.2hh horse. And he’s got the most incredible brain on him. You just can’t fault him – he’s an absolute joy.” Glasgow, who is known at home as Buddy, was bought last year for Alex’s mum, Sally, who gave the ride to Alex for the Regionals. “I’ll be quite sad to give the ride back to Mum to be honest,” laughed Alex. “I had a reason to hold on to him when we won the Regionals, but the now the Nationals is done…! But she’s going to have so much fun with him.” Talking about the test Alex said; “We didn’t go full power, because he’s never done a championship before and he’s only competed a handful of times. The few times he has been to a show, he’s always scored well and he has so much ability that we’ve not had to push him and compete too much, so I just wanted to do a really nice clear round to give him good experience. He’s goes in the Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold on Sunday and I’m really looking forward to that, but he can have a duvet day tomorrow!” “He has an amazing walk and a sensational trot, and it’s so natural to him. He’s my little red rocket,” said Alex, who trains with her Mum on a daily basis as well as with Carl Hester. “We get a nice tune-up from Carl. My mum always says it’s like a little bit of fairy dust sprinkled on top of you. You come away thinking ‘he makes it so easy’ – it’s incredible what he does.” Equissage Pulse Para Gold Stellar scores, sun, wind and rain were the theme for the Equissage Pulse Para Gold Championships amidst changeable weather conditions in the Horse Health arena. The five champions all produced standout tests to impress the judges panel consisting of John Robinson, Nicky Barratt and Mary Robins. Grade I Grade I winners Mari Durward-Akhurst and Sky O’Hara scored 70.71% to pip Diane Green and Susanna Wade to the top step of the podium. Speaking about her winning performance 24-year-old Mari said, ‘I was really, really pleased with the test today, I thought everything came together. Even with the wind and the rain, I think it was probably our best test together! We’ve been working really hard at home to get him more through from behind and more collected. He was much more together today and we managed to keep the activity as well.” Dancing partner Sky O’Hara has been with Mari for six years, having stayed much longer than the original one year loan agreement much to his rider’s delight. “Sky is 19 but you’d never know it! He’s an absolute dude and a bit of a comedian,” she added about his infectious character. Mari is now aiming for European Championship team selection in 2019 following a very successful season this year. Grade II Rising star Georgia Wilson captured the grade II competition in style recording 72.50% with her own Midnight II (by Hilkens Black Delight). 23-year-old Georgia is a pupil of none other than the queen of para dressage herself, Sophie Wells. “I was a bit nervous about competing today without her guidance,” admitted Georgia, “Training with Sophie is really good fun, she’s helped me a lot.” The elegant duo earned themselves a spot on the World Equestrian Games shortlist following a season full of superb tests. Speaking about today’s top draw ride Georgia said, “She did everything I asked her to do today. Our transitions were smooth, she was really good.” Grade III Amanda Shirtcliffe took a one-two in the grade III class with Jon Mcfarland’s experienced mare New Princess claiming the victory ahead of young talent Active Testarossa. “I was really pleased with the young horse [Active Testarossa] today,” Amanda said, “She’s not really ready for this level yet but she went really well and did great pirouettes. Princess is established at the level so today was all about producing a good test. She was a bit vocal which ruined a few of the movements but other than that she performed really well! “We’ve been working on improving our impulsion and getting a little more consistency with her [New Princess] contact at home. She’s very chilled out at home but she gets a bit of a sense of occasion when we go out – Princess by name princes by nature, she likes to come out and show off!” With future games in mind, Amanda is planning on focusing more on her young star. “Princess has done me proud, she’s been a good stalwart for internationals. I’ll start concentrating on bringing the young horse through the levels now.” Grade IV Blind para dressage rider Nicola Naylor aced her test with Ferrari V scoring 69.51% to take home the winners’ spoils in the grade IV Championship. Nicola credited Ferrari’s boost in confidence as a factor in their success today, “He was really fab today, he was much more confident and felt great. We’ve been working on getting him a bit more balanced and a bit more composed and collected, I think it’s really paid off.” Talking about their future Nicola said, “We’ve applied to join the world class program and I think he’s ready to push on now. I’ve had him since he was five, I think he’s reached a point now where we can see if we can do some team events with him – which would be really great!” The win was a bit of a surprise for Nicola who said that whilst she had hoped to do well she definitely didn’t expect the success! Second place went to Izzy Palmer with Sophie Wells’ Touchdown M whilst Marcelle Ward took the third place accolade with Dornroeschen. Grade V Charlotte Cundall and Brenda Reddy’s BamBam were victorious in the grade V competition; their score of 68.53% left them just one mark in front of Charlotte’s other ride, LJT Simply Red. Speaking to British Dressage after the prize giving Charlotte said, “The weather conditions weren’t ideal with the high winds! I rode last night and Bam was quite hot but it worked to my advantage, we had a bit more impulsion and expression than usual! I was thrilled with him.” The partnership have been working together since December 2017, in a busy debut season they’ve seen numerous personal best scores and a first international win. “I’m so grateful to Brendy Reddy who owns BamBam. My day was made slightly easier by Sophie [Wells] being at WEG and doing an amazing job out there! I love coming here and it’s been a really great end to our season, it’s been a good 2018,” Charlotte concluded. For full results click here .  
Thursday, September 20

Day one: LeMieux National Championships

A slightly wet and windy forecast at the LeMieux National Dressage Championships didn't dampen the spirits of those competing and enjoying a day out at Stoneleigh Park. The first five Championships were full of thrills, outstanding results and top quality competition (20 September 2018).  Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Scoring an emphatic win in the first class of the LeMieux National Dressage Championships was Dannie Morgan with Lisa Morgan’s Knoxxs Figaro. The eye-catching pair scored 71.97% to top the Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Championship judged by Nikki Herbert, Linda Whetstone, Mary-Anne Horn, Sue McMahon and Jane McGarel-Groves. Dannie, hailing from Southampton, was a dual winner at the Bicton Summer Regionals with ‘Fig’, an eight-year-old Dutch bred gelding by Jazz. Speaking about today’s winning test Dannie said, “He’s a phenomenal talent, it’s really nice when you’re sat on a horse with that sort of ability. He’s quite a nervous horse but we’re delighted with how he’s coped here. The changes were super today, they’re starting to feel much more established and he was very relaxed about them.” Having only made their Advanced Medium debut in June, a Championship win at this level appears even more impressive. Proud owner Lisa Morgan purchased her star horse as an unrideable four-year-old; her persistence and faith in her gelding’s quality paid off after a tricky start to his career. The elegant chestnut spent time with jockey Jamie Jenkinson, as well as dressage riders Kate Smith and Amy Schiessl at the start of his ridden journey. Lisa was full of praise for Dannie following his test, “The main thing today was that he was much more relaxed and able to cope with the environment, that’s all down to Dannie’s riding – he’s so laid back with him and that passes on to the horse. To be able to see him go so relaxed today is just mega. “It’s something else to see Dannie win with him and see the horse so happy. Being here is amazing but actually I can’t describe how special that felt today.” The winning partnership also paid credit to their team at home as well as Nicky Barrett who’s played an invaluable role in the development of their Champion horse. To complete a brilliant day, with Maeve Morris and Headmore Footloose crowned Backinaction Preliminary Silver Champion the news broke that the talented Dannie backed the winning horse aged three. Congratulations Dannie! Second place in the Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver went to Jayne Turney with Charlotte Dujardin’s Cruz III whilst Cornelia O’Mahony and Adam Signy's Formidable claimed third. BackInAction Prelim Silver Working rider Maeve Morris took full advantage of being the final competitor down the centreline in the BackInAction Prelim Silver. Riding Headmore Footloose, who’s bred and owned by her step mum Nicola Morris, Maeve stormed to victory with a performance which impressed judges Fiona Lace, Paul Hayler and John Robinson for a final score of 72.64%, a full two percent ahead of her nearest rival. “I never ever expected this; we just came for a nice day out!” said a delighted Maeve. Five year old ‘Eric’, by Florencio, is stabled at the Headmore Stud and Maeve is trained by Alice Oppenheimer. They have to fit training around Maeve’s full time London-based property development role which she commutes to daily from Hampshire. Eric carries the Headmore prefix as his dam, Donato, was bought from the Oppenheimers as three day old foal and went on to be ridden by Nicola. He was bred using embryo transfer and they also have a yearling out of Donato, who’s now 18. Proud trainer Alice Oppenheimer added; “They’ve just gone to a whole new level since the Regionals. We’ve work hard on the stretching in the free walk – I should think Eric is bored of that movement now but it’s really paid off today. They were consistent throughout and it was a lovely picture.” Amy Daye was second with her own Prince William MBS on 70.51% while Jordan Kavanagh finished on the same score with his own Fluer but was just a mark behind on collectives to finish third. Childéric Saddles Elementary Silver Gloucestershire rider Robert Barker took a one-two in the Childéric Saddles Elementary Silver Championship on day one of the LeMieux National Championships. Riding Chloe Walton’s Fidelius (by Fidertanz), he claimed the top spot with a score of 73.75% as well as securing second with Alison Haste’s Rousseau-sired mare, Woodlander Romance (71.56%). “I’m very pleased with both horses,” said Robert after the prize-giving. “I felt they would do well but just wanted to do two good tests for the stages of their training. To win is such a bonus. I’m very happy – over the moon” The blustery conditions that whipped across the Stoneleigh Showground didn’t pose much of a problem for the top-placed pairs. “He was a bit tense last night and she was very relaxed, then today, she was very relaxed and he a bit tense. But they were both very focused in the arena. They were both very good in there, and I’m pleased actually that I didn’t let them down,” he smiled. Robert is based in Upleaden, Gloucestershire and is stable rider for Charlotte Dujardin. “I’m very fortunate to ride some of her young horses,” he said Fidelius, now seven-years-old, has been ridden by Robert since February 2017. The pair were second in the Novice Silver here last year and are now working to step up to Advanced Medium. “Fidelius is a little ahead of six-year-old Woodlander Romance in his development, but they’re both lovely horses that try very hard,” he added Cavalor Intermediate II Lara Butler claimed the penultimate class of day one at Stoneleigh – the Cavalor Intermediate Championship. She rode a beautifully fluent test aboard Wifried and Ursula Bechtolsheimer’s Kristjan for a score of 71.60% ahead of Georgia Stokes with Talented Mr Ripley in second and Sadie Smith with Keystone Dynamite making up the top three. “They were very tricky conditions today,” said Lara. “The wind certainly picked up this afternoon, so I’m really pleased with him considering the flapping flags behind him. It literally sounded like something was going to explode behind us we came up the centreline. But he was so good, and he was focused. “We had a few little blips - he spooked at one of the flower plots that had blown over - but you can’t complain in these conditions, and he produced everything else perfectly for me. We’ve been working hard at home getting everything secure in his mind and in my mind, so that it’s all natural to us, and hopefully we showed that in the arena. Describing the best bits of her performance with the 13-year-old son of Polarion, Lara said; “The trot half passes are always one of his highlights – he finds them really easy. He just sort of floats across, then floats the other way. And he’s so secure in his changes.” Lara acquired the ride on Kristjan as a six-year-old and has trained him under the tutelage of the Bechtolsheimer family. “Our next thing from here will be to go to Grand Prix which is really exciting. ”I won the Inter II title here a few years back with Rubin Al Asad, so it’s a good sign,” she smiled. And here today, this means a lot. I’ve come second to Charlotte [Dujardin] a lot of the time at Small Tour, so it’s nice for him [Kristjan] to have his moment.” Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold On her return from Tryon, Charlotte Dujardin produced her usual magic in the Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold class filling not one, but two of the top spots. Her winning ride, Floretina, impressed once again in the LeMieux arena to add another title to a growing collection. The striking grey by Vivaldi scored 76.18% to finish two percent ahead of stable mate River Rise Nisa, co-owned by breeder Sarah Tyler-Evans. Charlotte also grabbed the fourth place ribbon with Carl Hester’s Brioso II to complete a great first day at the Championships. Speaking about her return to British soil and British competition Charlotte said, “I just got back on Sunday, I’m really lucky that Sadie Smith and Katie Bailey have kept them ticking over while I was away. It’s been a very quick turnaround! It was certainly not my normal Championship preparation but I’m so happy with them having not ridden for ten days. “I’ve trained them and I know them all really well but the fine tuning was missing a little today, a couple of mistakes happened that wouldn’t normally happen but I’m still really happy overall. The weather definitely had an affect too – I’ve gone from hot and humid to gale force winds… hurricane Florence has come to find me here!” The multi-medalled starlet was full of applause for Florentina, who hasn’t cantered up the centre line since Bolesworth due to a flat out calendar and World Equestrian Games preparations. “She’s a lovely horse who really tries, she’s really reliable,” Charlotte enthused. A WEG takeover saw fellow team medallist Emile Faurie claim third place with rising star Café’s Caletta (Café au Lait x Calato). The nine-year-old bay mare displayed all the signs for a successful future at Grand Prix level and her potential was reflected in the score – 73.71%. To view full results from day one at the LeMieux National Dressage Championships click here. Photos © Kevin Sparrow/Tanja Davis    
Thursday, September 20

Nettex CHAPS Associated Championships

 The inaugural Nettex Coloured Horse and Pony Associated Championships lit up Bury Farm last weekend to start the ten-strong series in style. Taking home a duo of titles and numerous placings was Somerset-based rider Danielle Rhodes. Danielle, who runs a livery yard and competition business at Kingfisher Equestrian, won both the Nettex Novice Associated Championship and the Nettex Elementary Associated Championship with two stunning CHAPS horses owned by Denise Kersley. In the Elementary class it was the handsome Jannick to claim the win with a fantastic score of 71.35%. The striking seven-year-old Pinto cross Friesian gelding also placed second in the Elementary Championship behind Danielle’s other champion, Tiger Tim. No stranger to success, Tiger Tim added yet another accolade to his record with a respectable 68.79%. Speaking about her superb show on Facebook Danielle said, “Another FANTASTIC week for Denise Kersley's boys. Firstly a lovely write up in Horse and Hound for their efforts at the Senior Home International. Then today we went to the Nettex CHAPS Associated Championships at Bury Farm. Jannick WON the Novice with 71. 35%... Tim WON the Elementary with 68.71% and Jannick finished a very close 2nd with 68.36% Tim then went on to take 2nd in the Medium! Huge thankyou to FL Photography for the gorgeous pictures and Nettex for the amazing prizes.” Danielle will head to Stoneleigh Park this week to contest the Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver class and the Childeric Saddles Elementary Class. The highest score of the show belonged to Rebecca Hutchinson with Shanbally Shadow who scored 72.58% on their way to a win in the Nettex Preliminary Associated Championship. 24-year-old Rebecca impressed the judges panel made up of Carolyn Alston and Ann Nicell to top the class of 29. Tanya Slade’s eye-catching skewbald Tango III was triumphant at Medium level after the pair presented a superb test worthy of 69.92%. It’s been a great year for the combination who’ve enjoyed many strong results at Medium and Advanced Medium, including at the NAF Five Star Winter Championships, Summer Regional Championships and Petplan Equine Area Festivals. 15-year-old Katherine Kirby enjoyed a first Championship win with her charming Thoroughbred x Cob Archie XIX in the Introductory class; 68.58% was the score for the perfectly matched pair. Second place in this class belonged to Phoebe Cornish with Smartie Boy. British Dressage thanks the team at Bury Farm for a wonderful Championship event as well as title sponsors Nettex for their generous support of the Associated Championship series. Results Introductory 1st Katherine Kirby with Archie XIX, 68.58% Preliminary 1st Rebecca Hutchinson with Shanbally Shadow, 72.58% Novice 1st Danielle Rhodes with Jannick, 71.35% Elementary 1st Danielle Rhodes with Tiger Tim, 68.79% Medium 1st Tanya Slade with Tango III, 69.92% For full results click here .  Photo kindly provided by Fae Loudoun Photography.   
Thursday, September 20

A splendid silver for Baker at WEG

Natasha Baker MBE, based in Middlesex, has won Individual Silver with her new ride, Mount St John Diva Dannebrog in the Grade III class at the FEI World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina USA. At just their third international competition together, Natasha has won her first senior championship medal with Diva [Mount St John Dannebrog] after less than a year together. Drawn first to go in the class, Natasha and Diva, owned by The Mount St John Stud, entered the Tryon Stadium for their first competition outing of the week. As their performance went on they grew in confidence and after a lovely test, were rewarded with a score of 72.471%, a score that could only be bettered by Rixt van der Horst from The Netherlands and her mount Findsley, who topped the standings with a score of 73.735%. A delighted Natasha said; “To get a silver medal with seven months of riding her is just insane! If somebody had told me in January that I would be competing here I would have told them they were lying. “She [Mount St John Diva Dannebrog] was amazing; she went in there like she owned it and I am so proud of everything that we have achieved in such a short space of time. I am so grateful to her owners [Mount St John Stud] for giving me this opportunity.” Commenting on her new horse, Natasha added; “Everything is new. I knew JP inside out and I knew how he would have been in there whereas I am still learning about Diva. It’s such a learning curve coming here with a new horse but I’ve got more years to get to know her.” Last in the class was fellow British team member, Erin Orford with Annabel Whittet’s Dior, both making their world championship debut. After a small mistake early on, they came back to finish positively, ending on a final score of 68.853%. Speaking afterwards; “I'm disappointed with the performance, for my team and everyone who's supported me - it's not what we came here to do. She's a super talented horse and has felt great all year and in training out here so I wanted to show that in the test but unfortunately that wasn't possible today. I hope that experience will help to build her confidence so that we can perform the test for the team that I know we're capable of.” Both Natasha and Erin will both compete in the team competition on Friday. Sophie Wells will be hoping for a second winning performance today in the Grade V with C Fatal Attraction in the all important team test at 14.30 (BST) and Lee Pearson goes with Styletta at 16.3 (BST). Times and results - click here And you can watch live and free on the FEI Dressage Facebook page.  
Wednesday, September 19

Wells secures WEG gold number one!

Nottinghamshire’s Sophie Wells MBE got her world championships off to a golden start as she took the top honours in the Grade V individual test at the FEI World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina, USA. Drawn first to go in the final class of the day, Sophie, with Charlotte Hogg’s C Fatal Attraction, produced a stunning test in the afternoon sun, to be rewarded with a score of 75.429%, which could not be beaten. “I don’t think it’s really sunk in yet to be honest,” a beaming Sophie said after the gold was confirmed, “sitting there and watching [the final riders] was awful, but it’s amazing I’m so chuffed. “You have different challenges through every part of your career, and every horse means something slightly different, I missed out in Normandy [WEG 2014] and you feel like you wait a long time to get the chance to do it again, I’m just so proud of him, it’s been a long journey like it has been for everyone else, and it just means a lot. “We’re going to build on from today; we’ve had a really great first week of WEG, and I’m just excited to get back in there for my team test and Freestyle on Saturday.” The medal today is Sophie's fourth gold medal at a World Championships after winning Team Gold in Normandy in 2014 and two individual titles in Kentucky in 2010. Earlier in the day, Sir Lee Pearson retired his young horse, Styletta from the Grade II individual test when the mare was unsettled.  He said; “She [Styletta] seems to be struggling a bit with the humidity here. She’s only nine years old; she’s a spectacularly powerful horse and each day she’s been here she’s been feeling like she’s struggling a bit with the weather. “I didn’t want to retire; I’m passionate about doing my best in the arena for my country but felt that it was the right thing to do." Lee has a rest day today when the horse will be checked and ridden ahead of Thursday's team test. Today we have our two Grade III riders in action - Natasha Baker kicks the class off with Mount St John Diva Dannebrog at 14.30 (BST) and Erin Orford is the final rider of the class with Dior at 17.18 (BST).  You can watch live and for free on the FEI Dressage Facebook page .  For start times and results - click here  
Tuesday, September 18

LeMieux National Dressage Championships 2018 Preview

There’s only two days to go before the event we’ve all been waiting for – the LeMieux National Championships 2018 (20 – 23 September). With four days of outstanding dressage on offer, this great national gathering of British dressage is a dream show for enthusiasts and followers of the sport. The centrally located Stoneleigh Park in Warwickshire will welcome the country’s leading riders alongside a host of talented amateurs. Combined, they’ll provide us with high calibre dressage competition at all levels, from Prelim right through to the crowning of the LeMieux National Champion at the ultimate level of Grand Prix. Charlotte Dujardin, fresh from the FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Tryon, North Carolina (USA), will be playing a huge role with no less than 11 competition starts with seven of her lovely young horses. Charlotte has always supported the Nationals and both Valegro and Mount St John Freestyle cut their teeth at this show. With this unequalled number of competition starts, there’ll be plenty of opportunity to see her ride. Defending her LeMieux National Champion title, Hayley Watson-Greaves returns with Rubins Nite in the Grand Prix which starts at 11.56 on Saturday. This class promises to be an exciting affair with several combinations likely to give Hayley a run for her money. Challengers for the title include Laura Tomlinson, Lara Butler, Gareth Hughes and the fast developing combination of Sonnar Murray-Brown and Erlentanz. Others to watch are the in-form duo of Louise Bell and Into The Blue, Vicky Thompson-Winfield and the charismatic Mango Jacaro, Matt Frost and AMD Don Rosso II and a pair who’ve certainly raised their game this year - Bobby Hayler with Aldborough Rubenhall. One to watch at the lower yet highly competitive levels is Michael Eilberg who will be presenting three young horses from the Mount St John Stud. This breeding operation is really making waves in the world of dressage and these young horses display the quality that has become synonymous with the Mount St John brand. MSJ Furstin Diaz is entered for the Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold, and Atterupgaards 02 and Mount St John Valencia in both the TopSpec Medium Gold and the Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold. The Shearwater Young Dressage Horse Finals are always a feast for the eyes with the top young horses in Great Britain going head-to head for the titles. All finalists will compete on Saturday performing their age-specific tests, then the top four from each age group will go through to Sunday’s final where Eva Möller, who returns as ride judge, will assess them for future potential. The quality on the start list is very high. The line-up includes Becky Moody and four-year-old James Bond who took top honours when qualifying at Hartpury, Kerry Mackin and five-year-old Izonik who was hot-on-the-heels of the winner in the four-year-olds last year, and Charlotte Dujardin with the six-year-old Hawtins San Floriana who also contests the TopSpec Medim Gold. On Saturday and Sunday, international Grand Prix rider Anna Ross, will be presenting the LeMieux Master Class in the main arena - at 15:57 on Saturday and 15:56 on Sunday. And we invite you to join us in celebrating the success of our Under 25 and Senior teams this year. The ‘ salute to the medallists ’ parade takes place 16:27 on Saturday. New for 2018, and on both weekend days, there’ll be a display by the world famous Atkinson Action Horses. For 20 years they’ve amazed and stunned crowds all over the globe and brought memorable scenes on both the large and small screen including Poldark and Victoria. Renowned for their daring and supreme horsemanship, we look forward to welcoming them at the Nationals for the first time! Super Saturday Saturday’s packed programme has been further boosted by Brightwells bringing their first dressage foal auction to Stoneleigh. Held in the main LeMieux arena in the evening, the Elite Foals Sale, in partnership with the Anglo European Studbook (AES), will feature a first-rate selection of dressage foals with outstanding proven bloodline. For the full catalogue click here . Don’t forget there’s a huge range of trade stands for that much needed retail therapy plus a good selection of food outlets to enjoy during your day out. On arrival at the showground, get your show-essential Programme (available on the gate, at the Secretary’s Office, at the BD stand and from the roving programme sellers) for exclusive interviews, all the essential reading on the competitors as well as the all-important schedule. For the full Nationals experience, why not purchase a Radio Nationals headset? These pre-tuned headsets (available from the Secretary’s Office and the BD stand), give you detailed commentary on the classes and help keep you up to date with what’s happening and where, ensuring you don’t miss a thing. And, if you can’t make it to the Nationals, you can keep up-to-speed with all the goings-on, scores, results and more by visiting www.britishdressage.co.uk , www.bdchampionships.com , Instagram,  Twitter and Facebook . If you haven’t yet got your tickets for the Nationals, don’t worry! Although advance ticket sales are now closed, tickets are available on each day of the Championships at the gate. Click here to visit the Championships website for detailed information on the event, ticket prices and schedules. We look forward to seeing you there! Thursday 20/09/2018 7:50 BackinAction Preliminary Silver Championship 7:50 Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Championship 10:25 Childéric Saddles Elementary Silver Championship 12:05 Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold Championship 14:35 Cavalor Intermediate II Gold Championship Friday 21/09/2018 7:50 Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold Championship 7:50 Equissage Pulse Para Dressage Gold Championship - Grade I , Grade II , Grade III , Grade IV , Grade V 10:10 Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver Championship 13:15 Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Gold Championship 14:10 TopSpec Medium Silver Championship Saturday 22/09/2018 7:50 Assessment & Pre-Judging Shearwater 4yo Young Horse 7:50 TopSpec Medium Gold Championship 9:12 Assessment & Pre-Judging Shearwater 5yo Young Horse 10:32 Assessment & Pre-Judging Shearwater 6yo Young Horse 11:48 LeMieux Grand Prix Gold Championship 14:59 Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Freestyle Gold Championship Sunday 23/09/2018 7:50 Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold Championship 7:50 Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold Championship 11:55 Final of the Shearwater 4yo Young Horse 13:40 Final of the Shearwater 5yo Young Horse 14:25 Final of the Shearwater 6yo Young Horse 15:20 Horse Health Grand Prix Freestyle Gold Championship
Monday, September 17

BD Abroad: Waregem CDI results

The contingent of British of riders who travelled to Belgium achieved promising results at Waregem CDI3*/CDIu25/CDIYJP (12 – 16 September 2018). In the Big Tour, British Olympian Emma Hindle and her elegant mare Romy Del Sol (by Romanov Blue Hors), pictured earlier this year, continued their consistent form. They delivered a solid Grand Prix for 68.43% and fifth place on Thursday, followed by a Grand Prix Special victory just shy of 69% to conclude their week. Junior rider Jessica McConkey, who made her European Championship debut this year in Fontainebleau, was delighted to earn her first international victory. Her winning Junior Team Test score of 68.48% with nine-year-old mare Lady Gaga II gave them a clear lead ahead of the home nation’s Emma Driesen and Kalahari in second. “Millie [Lady Gaga] and I are now home back from an amazing week away in Waregem having won our first international together! (And getting our first 7 for our pirouettes - they are not one of our strongest movements!). “Although when competing in the Individual test, unfortunately it was not our day with a few uncharacteristic mistakes. But [I'm] still thrilled with Millie’s performance in our Team test. Now to focus on the younger horses while Millie has a well-earned few days off.” Ellie McCarthy and Sir Lancelot M (Lordanos x Ginsberg 4), a 13-year-old stallion owned by Bridget McCarthy, were the winning combination in the U25 Grand Prix and Freestyle with scores of 66.02% and 67.32% respectively. The 21-year-old who is based with her trainer Helen Langehanenburg in Germany was happy with the performance of the beautiful grey who was acquired just 12 months ago. “We only went and won!” said Ellie on Facebook after Friday’s U25 Grand Prix. “[It was] Far from our best test but still a respectable score of 66%” Results of the British riders: CDI3* - Grand Prix 1st - Tosca Visser Van Der Meulen with Asther De Jeu, 70.304% (NED) 5th - Emma Hindle with Romy Del Sol, 68.435% (GBR) 8th - Sarah Millis with Hofjuwel, 66.174% (GBR) CDI3* - Grand Prix Special 1st - Emma Hindle with Romy Del Sol, 68.979% (GBR) 4th - Sarah Millis with Hofjuwel, 66.426% (GBR) CDI3* Prix St Georges 1st - Jorinde Verwimp with Kastar Hof Ter Zeedycke D’12, 73.147% (BEL) 7th - Tor Fenwick with Russki, 67.676% (GBR) CDI3* - Intermediate I 1st - Jorinde Verwimp with Kastar Hof Ter Zeedycke D’12, 72.353% (BEL) 7th - Tor Fenwick with Russki, 67.176% (GBR) CDI3* - Intermediate I Freestyle to Music 1st - Jorinde Verwimp with Kastar Hof Ter Zeedycke D’12, 75.775% (BEL) 10th - Tor Fenwick with Russki, 66.725% (GBR) CDIu25 – Grand Prix 16-25 1st - Ellen McCarthy with Sir Lancelot M, 66.026% (GBR) CDIu25 – U25 Grand Prix Freestyle to Music 1st - Ellen McCarthy with Sir Lancelot M, 67.325% (GBR) CDIY – Young Rider Team Test 1st - Fabienne Jongen with Botticelli, 70.147% (NED 4th - Rebecca Bell with Nibeley Union Hit, 65.490% (GBR) CDIY – Young Rider Individual Test 1st - Zoe Kuintjes with Primeval Brittsion, 69.363% (NED) 3rd - Rebecca Bell with Nibeley Union Hit, 66.225% (GBR) CDIY – Young Rider Freestyle to Music 1st - Zoe Kuintjes with Primeval Brittsion, 75.583% (NED) 4th - Rebecca Bell with Nibeley Union Hit, 67.792% (GBR) CDIJ – Junior Team Test 1st - Jessica McConkey with Lady Gaga, 68.485% (GBR) 8th - Amelia Moncrieff with Billionaire, 64.596% (GBR) CDIJ – Junior Individual Test 1st - Amber De Groot with Homemade, 68.137% (NED) 5th - Amelia Moncrieff with Billionaire, 66.520% (GBR) 10th - Charlotte Snape with Camelot III, 64.314% (GBR) 11th - Jessica McConkey with Lady Gaga, 58.971% (GBR) CDIJ – Junior Freestyle to Music 1st - Emma Driesen with Kalahari, 74.042% (GBR) 5th - Amelia Moncrieff with Billionaire, 68.875% (GBR) 6th - Charlotte Snape with Camelot III, 68.208% (GBR) CDIP – Pony Team Test 1st - Micky Schelstraete with Jonker’s Pieter, 70.381% (NED) 14th - Gemma Owen with Der Kleine Lord, 65.619% (GBR) CDIP – Pony Individual Test 1st - Rowena Weggelaar with Navarone Van De Beekerheide, 69.775% (NED) 8th - Gemma Owen with Der Kleine Lord, 66.622% (GBR) CDIP – Pony Freestyle to Music 1st - Morgan Walraven with Devill’s Kiss Naoni, 71.750% (NED) 5th - Gemma Owen with Der Kleine Lord, 70.375% (GBR) For full results click here Photo © Kevin Sparrow
Saturday, September 15

WEG Freestyle cancelled

Sadly the logistics of pre-booked horse flights and timetabling with the uncertainty over the weather have forced the orgainsers of the Helgstrand Dressage FEI World Freestyle to cancel.  The OC released the following statement; Following yesterday’s announcement of the intention to hold the Helgstrand Dressage Freestyle competition on Monday morning due to extreme rainfall forecast for Sunday’s original time slot of 8.30am , further discussions have been taking place to review the options available to reschedule.   Despite the best efforts of the whole Tryon 2018 team and the Officials, who have been working on plans for rescheduling since yesterday evening, including meetings with the Chefs de Mission and Chefs d’Equipe, the logistics of putting all necessary elements into place in time have proved insurmountable. As a result, and very regrettably, the Dressage Freestyle will now be cancelled. “This was not an easy decision, but we have explored every option, including trying to reschedule the horse departures, and even looking at moving the competition into the indoor with a change of footing, but the logistics of making all this happen are just not possible”, Tryon 2018 Organising Committee President Michael Stone said.   “We know this is desperately disappointing for the 15 athletes who had qualified their horses for the Freestyle, and of course for all the spectators who had bought tickets, but the weather has simply left us with no choice. Horse welfare has to be the top priority and flying the horses out on the same day as competition doesn’t work, so sadly the decision to cancel the Freestyle had to be taken.”   “Although we are devastated that this decision has had to be taken, we’ve had two absolutely world-class competitions here at Tryon, including yesterday’s Grand Prix Special, and to see Germany’s Isabell Werth and Bella Rose taking double gold and Team USA claiming silver was a real treat for Dressage fans.”   The decision does not affect the Olympic qualification process, as this was completed on Thursday . The teams that have earned their ticket to Tokyo 2020 are Germany, USA, Great Britain, Sweden, Netherlands and Spain.
Saturday, September 15

Bronze brilliance from Dujardin

After just a single year out of the Team GBR squad, Charlotte Dujardin firmly announced she was back on the world stage today with a massive statement of intent with Mount St John Freestyle at the Helgstrand Dressage FEI World Championships. The double Olympic Champion and nine year old Fidermark mare wowed the judges and crowd with a spectacular performance worthy of 81.48%, a new personal best and individual bronze medal in only their third Grand Prix Special together. Home crowd favourites Laura Graves and Verdades took silver with 81.71% to match their team medal while red hot pre-Games favourites Isabell Werth and Bella Rose were the convincing gold medallists on 86.24%. A beaming Charlotte, who shed a few tears on her way out of the arena after the momentous performance, said; “I’m absolutely delighted! She’s only nine and that was just her third [Grand Prix] Special. I knew going in I had nothing to lose and rode her every inch of the way. That feeling I had in the arena today was amazing and for me, it didn’t matter if the test won me a medal as I knew she’d given me everything.” Earlier in the day, Team GBR’s first rider to go was Emile Faurie with Hof Kasselmann’s Dono Dimaggio. At over 18hh tall, the ten year old has found the heat and humidity testing and today a few mistakes kept the score to a most respectable 70.38%. Emile has great faith in the horse and, while it wasn’t what he’d hoped for, he knows there’s much to come; “It wasn’t his best performance today. He’s a massive horse and the last few days have taken a lot out of him but he really tried. I gave him a very short warm up but he’s inexperienced; he’s a brilliant horse and he’ll be even better next year. That’s just the way it goes sometimes. The trip has been a great experience for him and for me, it’s been a great honour to be part of this amazing team. Other nations are envious of the great team spirit we have,” he said. About 20 minutes before Spencer Wilton was due to compete with Jen Goodman’s Super Nova II, the sad news came through that the duo had withdrawn. ‘Neville’ got himself very excited in yesterday’s bronze medal ceremony and tweaked something which meant he wasn’t quite 100% and the decision was made. Spencer said; “I’m obviously devastated for myself and Jen as we were so looking forward to building on what we achieved in the Grand Prix. Prize givings are not Neville’s favourite thing and normally I wouldn’t do them with him but we’re at a Championship. I helped the team secure qualification for Tokyo 2020 and that’s my primary focus so with that in mind, his welfare was key to this tough decision.” After a magical performance yesterday, Carl Hester kicked off the final session of the day with his own, Ann Cory and Lady Anne Evans’s British bred Hawtins Delicato. It was another majestic performance from the maestro with just a mistake in the one-time tempi canter changes keeping the score at 77.21% which was enough for an eventual ninth place. “I have to be happy with 77% plus in only his second Special and his first Championship, after all, he’s only a young horse. I had a costly mistake in the onetime changes and in the heat and humidity the final centreline really took all his energy,” said Carl. “It’s only when you come to shows like this you learn about your horse and he’s also learned a lot here. I was happy with the team result as that’s what we came here to do but I’m equally happy today,” he continued. A good day at the office all in all with the two young horses fulfilling their potential and finishing in the world’s top ten with a bronze medal to celebrate. Both combinations are through to Sunday’s finale Freestyle and Charlotte will be debuting a new floorplan. “I have new music but I’m keeping it under wraps for now. I love it though and have chosen something quite girly to suit her. I’ve never done a three test show with her so I’m not sure what she’ll have left in the tank but she’s such a trier. She’ll have an easy day tomorrow and then see what Sunday brings,” she said. For full results – click here For Sunday’s Freestyle times when available – click here  
Friday, September 14

Petplan Equine Area Festival Final qualifying ratios

The numbers qualifying from Petplan Equine Area Festival Finals to the Championship next April have been released.  Please note the following: 1) The number qualifying from each Area Festival Final class will depend on the number of starters in that particular class, according to the conversion charts. The number of qualifications per level varies according to the total number of horses qualified for the Area Festival Finals and the number of spaces available at the Petplan Equine Area Festival Championships. 2) Combinations scoring below 63% will not be eligible for qualification for the Petplan Equine Area Festival Championship as stated in the British Dressage Rule Book, UNLESS IT IS BY A WILD CARD 3) A ‘starter’ is a horse that actually enters the competition arena and goes down the centre line, even if it withdraws before finishing. 4) The number of starters will not be known until the class is finished after which the organiser will calculate how many have qualified and mark them on the scoreboard. The number of direct qualifications will be announced at the prize giving. Everyone who has qualified MUST collect a qualification certificate from the secretary before leaving the showground. 5) Official entry packs will be emailed / posted to the RIDER directly from the BD Office in plenty of time for entries to be made to the Petplan Equine Area Festival Championship in April 2019. 6) The names of the combinations awarded wild cards will be put on the BD website. These spaces will be filled by the highest scoring unqualified combinations from all the Area Festival Finals. The rider will be notified by the office that they’ve been given a wild card and their qualification pack will be sent by post. 7) Scores must be 63% and above to qualify to the Championships     Numbers to qualify are: PRELIM BRONZE: 1 in 7 qualifies 1 - 7 = 1 qualifies 8 - 14 = 2 qualify 15 -21 = 3 qualify 22 - 28 = 4 qualify 29 – 35 = 5 qualify PRELIM SILVER: 1 in 7 qualifies 1 - 7 = 1 qualifies 8 - 14 = 2 qualify 15 -21 = 3 qualify 22 - 28 = 4 qualify 29 – 35 = 5 qualify PRELIM UNDER 21: 1 in 7 qualifies 1 - 7 = 1 qualifies 8 - 14 = 2 qualify 15 -21 = 3 qualify 22 - 28 = 4 qualify 29 – 35 = 5 qualify NOVICE BRONZE: 1 in 10 qualifies 1 – 10 = 1 qualifies 11 – 20 = 2 qualify 21 – 30 = 3 qualify 31 – 40 = 4 qualify NOVICE SILVER: 1 in 10 qualifies 1 – 10 = 1 qualifies 11 – 20 = 2 qualify 21 – 30 = 3 qualify 31 – 40 = 4 qualify NOVICE UNDER 21: 1 in 6 qualifies 1 – 6 = 1 qualifies 7 – 12 = 2 qualify 13 – 18 = 3 qualify 19 – 24 = 4 qualify ELEMENTARY BRONZE: 1 in 10 qualifies 1 – 10 = 1 qualifies 11 – 20 = 2 qualify 21 – 30 = 3 qualify 31 – 40 = 4 qualify ELEMENTARY SILVER: 1 in 10 qualifies 1 – 10 = 1 qualifies 11 – 20 = 2 qualify 21 – 30 = 3 qualify 31 – 40 = 4 qualify ELEMENTARY UNDER 21: 1 in 3 qualifies 1 – 3 = 1 qualifies 4– 6 = 2 qualify 7 – 9 = 3 qualify 10 – 12 = 4 qualify MEDIUM BRONZE: 1 in 9 qualifies 1 – 9 = 1 qualifies 10 – 18 = 2 qualify 19 – 27 = 3 qualify 28 – 36 = 4 qualify MEDIUM SILVER: 1 in 8 qualifies 1 – 8 = 1 qualifies 9– 16 = 2 qualify 17 – 24 = 3 qualify 25 – 32 = 4 qualify MEDIUM UNDER 21: 1 in 3 qualifies 1 – 3 = 1 qualifies 4– 6 = 2 qualify 7 – 9 = 3 qualify 10 – 12 = 4 qualify ADVANCED MEDIUM BRONZE: 1 in 6 qualifies 1 – 6 = 1 qualifies 7 – 12 = 2 qualify 13 – 18 = 3 qualify 19 – 24 = 4 qualify ADVANCED MEDIUM SILVER: 1 in 5 qualifies 1 – 5 = 1 qualifies 6 – 10 = 2 qualify 11 – 15 = 3 qualify 16 – 20 = 4 qualify PRIX ST GEORGES BRONZE: 1 in 10 qualifies 1 – 10 = 1 qualifies 11 – 20 = 2 qualify 21 – 30 = 3 qualify PRIX ST GEORGES SILVER: 1 in 12 qualifies 1 – 12 = 1 qualifies 13 – 24 = 2 qualify 25 – 36 = 3 qualify INTERMEDIATE I BRONZE: 1 in 3 qualifies 1 – 3 = 1 qualifies 4 – 6 = 2 qualify 7 – 9 = 3 qualify INTERMEDIATE I SILVER: 1 in 5 qualifies 1 – 5 = 1 qualifies 6– 10 = 2 qualify 11 – 15 = 3 qualify 16 – 20 = 4 qualify INTERMEDIATE II SILVER: winner only qualifies
Friday, September 14

BD vacancy: Training & Education Officer

British Dressage (BD) is the governing body for the Olympic sport of dressage and a member of the British Equestrian Federation. We aim to promote and develop dressage in the UK, with training at the very heart of everything that we do to continually improve our sport. As a result, an exciting new opportunity has arisen to join the head office team as Training and Education Officer. We are looking for a dynamic, enthusiastic person with excellent administrative and customer service skills to join us, working to develop and support training for coaches and judges, as well as helping to manage our key events. This will be a full time role based at our offices in Meriden, West Midlands. Reporting to the Training and Education Manager, you will have an integral role in the delivery of our national training activity and judge testing examination system. As such, knowledge of qualifications and training would be advantageous. You’ll also play an important part in the organisation of BD’s major national training events, such as the National Convention, Judges Convention, Principles of Judging Seminar and a range of other national training initiatives. To effectively deliver British Dressage’s training events, experience of events management is essential. This is a busy and varied role where good communication, interpersonal and organisation skills are essential, along with a proactive ‘can do’ attitude. The successful candidate will work across several projects simultaneously, so the ability to multi-task while taking a diligent, structured approach is also fundamental. You will be expected to build strong relationships with judges, volunteers and colleagues within BD. As such, specific knowledge of dressage and / or familiarity with the equestrian world would be a distinct advantage. Due to the nature of our sport a flexible approach to working is required, including some attendance at events during weekends and evenings. The salary for this role will be circa £20,000 to £22,500 per annum, depending on experience. For more information please see www.britishdressage.co.uk or contact Angela Green for a copy of the Job Description. To apply, please send a covering letter outlining your suitability for the role and a copy of your CV by email to Angela Green: angela.green@britishdressage.co.uk Closing date: 11 October 2018 Interview date: 18 October 2018
Friday, September 14

 It’s a first medal for Team GBR in Tryon

It was mission accomplished for the Equestrian Team GBR dressage quartet today when the achieved their primary aim of qualification for Tokyo 2020 Olympics, picking a bronze medal up as a well-deserved bonus. After Spencer Wilton and Emile Faurie put us in with a fighting chance on day one of the Helgstrand Dressage FEI World Team Championship, it was down to our two familiar faces, Carl Hester and Charlotte Dujardin to produce a piece of riding brilliance with their two young charges, Hawtins Delicato and Mount St John Freestyle respectively, who had less than a dozen Grand Prix performances between them. But if any riders in field could do it, it would be these two. Carl has made no secret that ‘Del’ has been on his toes this week and has been unpredictable. An early morning ride in the arena ‘on the buckle end’ gave Carl confidence that the British bred Diamond Hit gelding was relaxed enough to deliver the goods. He came into the sweltering arena with the ten year old he jointly owns with Lady Anne Evans and Ann Cory and looked like they were seasoned Championship regulars. ‘Del’ was confident in his work, the only noticeable blip being a missed change in the zig zag and Carl was clearly delighted – along with a welcoming crowd who were well behind the British rider. 77.28% was the score and a new personal best for the exciting duo. Afterwards, he said; “I knew I’d have to have the ride of my life today and I did. I had 77% in my mind as my target, not that I told anyone that, so I couldn’t be more pleased but I’m surprised! Earlier in the week I didn’t think he’d cope but I rode him this morning in the area in walk and he felt relaxed so I thought I might have a good ride. He absolutely put his heart into that test. “I had a mistake in my zig zag which is usually his party piece so that was annoying and then I could feel myself over-riding so I said ‘sit still, sit still’ to myself. He’s held the horse in high regard and today, that potential was realised on the world stage; “I’ve had him since he was five; I saw him canter by at a show and just saw his hind leg and thought ‘I have to have that horse!’ I then found he was bred and owned by a small stud just three miles from home. The last person I saw as I went in was his breeder Judith (Davis) and I was proud that she was able to come and see him compete,” he said. After three riders, the Germans held a commanding lead but it was then a race between Britain, the USA, Sweden and the Netherlands for the remaining medals. Charlotte was the first of the chasing pack to go with Mount St John Equestrian’s Mount St John Freestyle. At just nine, she was one of the youngest in the field but cantered into the arena like it was the school at home in Gloucestershire, totally at ease with her surroundings. The first piaffe was a bit green with some travel but the passage before and after was spectacular. A mistake in the one-time changes proved costly for what was approaching 80% but when the final score was added, it was 77.67% to give Team GBR a final score of 229.45 for the others to match. Afterwards, Charlotte told the world’s media; “What an amazing horse to come here and do that! To cope with the environment and produce a test like that, I’m over the moon with her. There’s a lot of expectation on her and I’m so proud that she didn’t bother with anything, she’s so exciting for the future. There were a couple of mistakes but easy to fix and I couldn’t really have asked for more from her, she’s a real trier.” There was a tinge of disappointment from the young lady who is competitive to the core but she knew her young mare had done the job and was delighted to be back at a Championship after a year’s gap. So the audience, bathed in the North Carolina September sunshine, settled in for a battle royal in the final session where it would go to the wire for the medals. Germany’s Isabel Werth was the first contender with the mare she holds most dear, who had the luxury of knowing that her team had secured gold even without her score so it was just down to securing qualification for tomorrow’s Grand Prix Special. A spectacular 84.82% was the score to take the lead. Then it was the most crucial for Team GBR, Patrik Kittel for Sweden with Well Done de la Roche CMG as they were the closest to us for a medal. His mare is just ten and also lacks mileage and experience and they were looking for over 78.3% to go ahead of Britain. A shaky start built to a confident finish and the score climbed and climbed…78.19% was the confirmed score and Britain was all but guaranteed a medal but which colour? Edward Gal was the final Dutch rider and he needed every bit of his experience with the stallion Glock’s Zonik as they needed over 83% to trouble the team medals. 77.18% was his final score which meant Britain had bronze with a small, outside chance of going one better. The fate of the home team, the USA, rested with seasoned duo Laura Graves and Verdades, possibly no better combination for the task of securing silver. Their mission was a score of at least 78.3%. The 16 year old was really lifted by the home support and danced his way to a +81% score which secured a well-deserved silver much to the delight of the crowd waving their stars and stripes. So for the third FEI championship in succession, Germany stood atop the podium to cement their current domination of dressage with a reversal of the Rio places below with the USA in silver and Team GBR in bronze. Chef d’Equipe Caroline Griffith commented; “This performance is truly exciting for the future. These young horses and the way the our riders have produced them is just incredible. I’m proud of them; it was a great atmosphere today which gave them all great confidence. To come here and secure our Tokyo qualification and come away with a medal just shows the quality of horses and riders we have. Watch out world!” All four British riders finished in the top 30 so are through to Friday’s Grand Prix Special when the first individual medals will be decided. Coverage will be available on the BBC red button - for the otherways to view, click here . For full team results - click here For full individual results - click here For times for the Grand Prix Special - will appear here Photo - c Kevin Sparrow
Thursday, September 13

Tight at the top in Tryon after day one

After a frenetic build up to bring the spectacular site at the Tryon International Equestrian Centre to a state of readiness to welcome the world over the last few days, the eagerly awaited FEI World Team Championship, supported by Helgstrand Dressage, got underway as part of the FEI World Equestrian Games. Fifteen nations came forward for the team honours with two riders in action on day one. The first rider for Britain, drawn tenth, was Spencer Wilton with Jen Goodman’s 15 year old De Niro in their third Championship together. It was the first time Spencer acted as pathfinder but he felt a quieter position in the running order would help him to keep ‘Neville’, who can let the nerves get to him, more settled. It proved to be a wise choice as 74.58% was just the score the Brits needed to get them off to a strong start. A few moments of inconsistency in the piaffe work were the only noticeable blips in an otherwise strong performance which delighted the British supporters. “He felt amazing, really good. He does get nervous but I felt him relax as the test went on. The nerves did show in his first piaffe but I’m so pleased,” said a beaming Spencer. “It’s been a difficult year with injuries to both of us but it’s brilliant to now get the job done. He’s 15 now and fully grown up and he’s learning to deal better with the big atmosphere. I didn’t mind going first and knew it was really important to get a good mark for the rest of the team to build on so I’m glad I did my job,” he continued. At the lunch break, it was Jessica von Bredow-Werndl who held the lead for red hot gold medal favourites Germany with TSF Dalera BB with 76.67%. The second session got underway after a shower deluge tested the arena drainage to the full but the footing held up well for the first few second team riders. Emile Faurie, making his 11th championship appearance for Team GBR, was our second rider with Hof Kasselmann KG’s Dimaggio sired 11 year old Dono di Maggio on Championship debut. The horse is quite inexperienced at the elite level of the sport but Emile has great belief in his ability and potential. But today, as the sun appeared bringing sweltering heat, the inexperience showed for a few costly errors. A costly missed one time change, a few uncertain piaffe/passage steps and a near-break in the final extended trot, which Emile went on to recover well, kept the score pegged back but some work was trending on 7.7 upwards on the score board so the potential is there. 72.79% was the final score, a very credible performance in the company but the Oxfordshire rider was clearly disappointed. “He’s a very young inexperienced horse and went into himself a bit so sadly he didn’t shine quite as much as I know he can. He’s an incredible horse but never seen anything like this,” he said. But Emile’s vast experience and positive outlook put his own performance behind him to focus on what’s to come; “Spencer [Wilton] was magnificent this morning and Carl and Charlotte are seasoned professionals but they’re on young horses too so we’ll have to see what happens. I’ve not contributed quite as I’d have liked but we’re still up there.” Immediately after Emile was the key duo of Dorothee Schneider for Germany with Sammy Davis Jr and they posted 75.06% to go second to her team mate. But then the next rider, Sweden’s Juliette Ramel riding Buriel KH somewhat upset the form book with a 75.24% to neatly nestle between the two Germans. Hans Peter Minderhoud was a late threat to upset the team standings but a 73.5% with Glock’s Dream Boy NOP put them just behind Spencer. The final rider who could make a difference to the clubhouse standings was Adrienne Lyle, riding Salvino, for the home nation, the USA. It was nip and tuck the whole way with her scores trending near Spencer right up to the centre line so it was an agonising wait for that confirmed score to appear. 74.86% it was, pushing Spencer back by just 0.3% but enough to push Team GBR to fourth in the team standings. So, as many predicted, Germany hold the advantage after the first day, Sweden second, the USA third, Britain narrowly in forth and the Netherlands fifth. However it’s all exceptionally close with the third and fourth riders to come in an exciting climax in the US Trust arena tomorrow. For full results: click here   For tomorrow’s running order: click here Photo - c Kevin Sparrow Photography
Wednesday, September 12

Let the Games begin!

The Equestrian Team GBR dressage quartet are all safely through the first horse inspection and the horses looked stunning thanks to our hard working grooms. The draw has taken place and we’re tenth to go with Chef d’Equipe Caroline Griffith has naming the running order as: Wednesday Spencer Wilton with Jen Goodman and his own Super Nova II at 10:43 EST, 15:43 BST Emile Faurie with Hof Kasselmann KG’s Dono Di Maggio at 15.24 EST, 20.24 BST Thursday Carl Hester with Lady Anne Evans, Ann Cory and his own Hawtins Delicato at 11.10, 15.10 BST Charlotte Dujardin with the Mount St John Stud’s Mount St John Freestyle at 15.51, 20.51 BST Caroline Griffith, Team GBR Dressage Performance Manager commented; “It’s great we’ve got the draw done now and we know where we are in the order. It’s a good draw for us as the last to go in the second group. The horses and riders are absolutely ready to go. The stables, surfaces and facilities are excellent and we’re now ready for some top competition.” For a coverage guide – click here For running orders and resutls – click here We quizzed some of the riders today for their thoughts: Spencer Wilton Initial impressions of Tryon International Equestrian Centre “The venue is improving every day. The ground team here have worked flat out to make our stay as comfortable as they can.” On Jen Goodman’s Super Nova II “Neville travelled really well. At an event away he usually hits a wall on day five so we gave him a quiet day but he’s now ready for action. He’s coped remarkably well as this is a very difficult environment for him with the construction going on. He’s really surprised me just how well he’s coped.” On his own injury “The injury to my back has been a slight issue but the back is much better but it’s now gone into my calf muscle; it’s like I have constant cramp. Walking is a challenge so running would be impossible, that’s why Carl [Hester] trotted Neville up this morning. Thankfully, riding is not painful at all.” Thoughts on the Grand Prix test “My aim is to get a good, solid score which supports the team.” Emile Faurie Initial impressions of Tryon International Equestrian Centre “It’s a really nice venue actually. The stables are brilliant, the surfaces are good and we have a great team behind us. Everything is good.” On Hof Kasselmann KG’s Dono Di Maggio “He’s in really good form. He’s a young horse and so inexperienced; this is the biggest thing he’s ever done but he’s coping really well and not put a foot wrong. He’s not a spooky horse and has been very relaxed. In my experience, there’s no point in being nervous as it just negatively impacts performance. Our preparation has gone really well and he’s just got better and better this season.” Thoughts on the Grand Prix test “We have a strong team of horses and all of them are fit and well. We’ll go out there and do our best but I have no expectations. We’ve had a great run up but he’s done less than a dozen Grand Prix tests so I’m positive. We have a great support team who’ve done their best, now it’s down to us riders to make it happen.” Charlotte Dujardin Initial impressions of Tryon International Equestrian Centre “The venue is fantastic. The arenas, surfaces, stables are all excellent and I’m really looking forward to getting started.” On Mount St John Equestrian LLP’s Mount St John Freestyle “She’s feeling great. She’s worked hard the past couple of days so today was a rest day – at just nine, she need a day off! She was fantastic in the main arena yesterday so I felt there was no need today to go again. So far, she’s taken everything in her stride. Thoughts on the Grand Prix test “I’m not sure what to expect but she’s felt brilliant this far and taken everything on board so we’ll see what brings.” Carl Hester Initial impressions of Tryon International Equestrian Centre “The facilities are superb. They’re working so hard to get everything ready and doing a phenomenal job. If the weather can just hold, we’re in for a great Games and top notch competition.” On Lady Anne Evans, Ann Cory and his own Hawtins Delicato “It’s big test for his character. Yesterday he was really on his toes, the arena walk blew his mind a bit. However today he’s given me a really relaxed ride so that’s given me huge confidence in him.” Thoughts on the Grand Prix “It’s the test I’ve been building towards all year. If the team are to be in a chance of a medal, I have to ride a positive, forward test rather than just play it safe.”    
Tuesday, September 11

BD Abroad: Waregem CDI3*/CDIu25/CDIYJP

The following riders have been selected to represent Great Britain this week at Waregem CDI3*/CDIU25/CDIYJP in Belgium (13 – 16 September 2018). CDI3* - Big Tour Emma Hindle from Greater Manchester with her own Romy Del Sol (brown mare, 12yrs, 17.3hh, s. Romanov Blue Hors). Sarah Millis from Horsham, West Sussex with Katja Kuistila’s Hofjuwel (brown gelding, 13yrs, 16.2hh, s. Hofrat ds. Davignon I) - pictured. CDI3* - Small Tour Tor Fenwick from Hook, Hampshire with Shaun Measures' Russki (bay gelding, 12ys, 16.3hh, s. Rimskij Korsakov). CDIU25 - Under 25s Ellie McCarthy from New Milton, Hampshire with Bridget McCarthy’s Sir Lancelot M (grey stallion, 13yrs, 16.3hh, s. Lordanos, ds. Ginsberg 4). CDIY – Young Riders Rebecca Bell from Faringdon, Oxfordshire with Caroline Bell’s Nibeley Union Hit (bay mare, 11yrs, 16.1hh, s. Nibeley Union Jack). CDIJ – Juniors Jessica McConkey from Watlington, Oxfordshire with her own Lady Gaga II (bay mare, 9yrs, 16.2hh, s. Quaterback, ds. Solos Landwind). Amelia Moncrieff from Harrogate, North Yorkshire with Claire Williams’ Billionaire (brown stallion, 12yrs, 16.2hh, s. Blue Hors Romanov). Charlotte Snape from Woodmansey, East Yorkshire with her own Camelot III (bay gelding, 16yrs, 16hh, s. Carabas, ds. Dolce Vita). CDIP – Ponies Gemma Owen from Mold, Flintshire with her own Der Kleine Lord (brown gelding, 11yrs, 14.1hh, s. Der Feine Lord). Event website
Monday, September 10

WEG 2018: How to follow the action

On Wednesday, the first day of Dressage competition gets underway at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Tryon, North Carolina, USA (12 – 16 September 2018) and we’re delighted that the competition will be available to view and follow via a range of channels. Read on to see how and where you can follow the competition. The details may however be updated from time-to-time so please keep an eye on the Equestrian Team GBR website for the very latest information. Dressage timetable (times are BST) Tuesday 11 September 13:30 – Horse Inspection Wednesday 12 September 13:45-23:00 – Grand Prix Thursday 13 September 13:45-23:00 – Grand Prix (Team medals) Friday 14 September 14:30-22:30 – Grand Prix Special (Individual medals) Sunday 16 September 13:30-14:40 – Grand Prix Freestyle (Individual medals) Para Dressage timetable (times are BST) Monday 17 September 14:00 – Horse Inspection Tuesday 18 September 13:30-22:30 – Individual medals (Grade IV 13:30, Grade II 17:30, Grade V 20:30) Wednesday 19 September 13:30-22:30 – Individual medals (Grade III 13:30, Grade I 17:00) Thursday 20 September 14:00-22:00 – Team competition (Grade V 14:00, Grade II 16:00, Grade IV 18.30) Friday 21 September 14:00-21:00 – Team medals (Grade III 14:00, Grade I 17:00) Saturday 22 September 14:30-22:45 – Individual Freestyle Medals (Grade IV 14:30, Grade V following, Grade I 18:30, Grade II following, Grade III following) COVERAGE GUIDE Make sure you tune in to watch or follow online (five platforms). • BBC: website | Coverage guide • BBC Red Button: Freeview 601 \ Freesat 981 | Sky Channel 980 | Virgin Media 991 • FEI TV: website | FEI YouTube channel | FEI Facebook • Horse & Country TV: Sky Channel 184 | Virgin TV 298 | Horse & Country TV | Amazon Video | Roku | website • Eurosport: website DAILY PLANNER All times below are given in BST (UK times). To find the competition schedule, please visit the Tryon 2018 website . WEDNESDAY 12 SEPTEMBER 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review (Opening Ceremony) 13.50: FEI TV (Dressage Grand Prix) 17.00: Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook THURSDAY 13 SEPTEMBER 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review 13.50: FEI TV (Dressage Grand Prix) 17.00: Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook 22.00-23.45: Eurosport 1 FRIDAY 14 SEPTEMBER 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review 15.10-18.20: BBC Red Button & Online (Dressage Grand Prix Special) 15.20: FEI TV (Dressage Grand Prix Special) 17.00: Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook 19.10-22.30 : BBC Red Button & Online (Dressage Grand Prix Special) 22.00-23.30: Eurosport 1 SATURDAY 15 SEPTEMBER 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review 17.00 : Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook SUNDAY 16 SEPTEMBER 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review 13.10-16.50: BBC Red Button & Online (Dressage Grand Prix Freestyle) 13.20: FEI TV (Dressage) 17.00: Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook MONDAY 17 SEPTEMBER 13.00-15.30: BBC Two (Highlights programme) TUESDAY 18 SEPTEMBER 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review 13.20: FEI TV (Para-Dressage) 17.00: Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook WEDNESDAY 19 SEPTEMBER 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review 13.20: FEI TV (Para-Dressage) 17.00: Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook THURSDAY 20 SEPTEMBER 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review 13.50: FEI TV (Para-Dressage) 17.00: Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook 21.30: Horse & Country TV (Dressage, Team) FRIDAY 21 SEPTEMBER 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review 13.50: FEI TV (Para-Dressage) 17.00: Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook 21.30: Horse & Country TV (Dressage, Grand Prix Special) SATURDAY 22 SEPTEMBER 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review 13.50: FEI TV (Para-Dressage) 17.00 : Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook 21.30: Horse & Country TV (Dressage, Grand Prix Freestyle) SUNDAY 23 SEPTEMBER 13.00-14.00: BBC Two (Highlights programme) 13.00: Horse & Country TV – WEG 2018 Daily Review 16.30-17.30: BBC Two (Highlights programme) 17.00: Live@Tryon on FEI TV, YouTube & Facebook MONDAY 24 SEPTEMBER 13.00-14.00: BBC Two (Highlights programme) MONDAY 1 OCTOBER 20.00: Horse & Country TV (Para-Dressage) For all the latest news and updates from the Championships, visit the official WEG 2018 website - tryon2018.com For live daily updates, be sure to follow us on Facebook , Instagram and Twitter .
Monday, September 10

Bandreo comes of age in Saumur

Great Britain’s Sara Gallop secured her first overseas victory at the weekend in the Middle Tour divisions at Saumur CDI2*/CDI3* in France (7 – 9 September 2018). With her 12-year-old Sandreo-sired stallion, Bandreo, her campaign started well with second in Saturday’s Intermediate A, culminating in a landmark victory for the pair in Sunday’s Intermediate B. The British partnership (pictured earlier this year) achieved 69.363% and 69.792% in the Inter A and B respectively, taking victory in the latter ahead of the home nation’s Guillaume Lundy Cne and Temp Ene HN (69.625%) in second. “I’m thrilled with Bandreo,” Sara told British Dressage, after arriving back home to Summerhouse EC in Gloucestershire. “It’s been a long journey with him – it’s not been plain sailing – but this is one of the shows when you think ‘we’re finally there’. He’s given me everything and more.” Bandreo has been in the Gallop-family stable since a three-year-old and he’s the third horse Sara has trained to Grand Prix. The stallion’s ability is matched by an equally large helping of joie de vivre, which his rider has patiently encouraged him to temper. “He’s a bit spirited shall we say, in that he has some issues with enthusiasm,” she smiled. “He’s so enthusiastic, especially in the canter, but he’s a phenomenal horse with all the ability.” This year, the good-looking bay has shown increasing maturity, delivering good results including a Grand Prix Special win at Hickstead Premier League in June and internationally, a win in the Inter B at Hickstead CDI one month later. “It’s been an amazing, well organised show,” said Sara, in praise of the organising team at Saumur. “And all the Brits got together which was really nice. There was a very nice team spirit.” Louise Bell and Into The Blue, who are having the year of their career so far, achieved good results in the Big Tour – fourth in the Grand Prix with 68.739% and a podium position in the Freestyle with 71.825% for third. CDI3* Grand Prix 1st Adelinde Cornelissen with Aqiedo, 74.087% (NED) 4th Louise Bell with Into The Blue, 68.739% (GBR) CDI3* Grand Prix Freestyle 1st Adelinde Cornelissen with Aqiedo, 80.365% (NED) 3rd Louise Bell with Into The Blue, 71.825% (GBR) CDI2* Middle Tour Intermediate A 1st Guillaume Lundy Cne with Tempo Ene HN, 71.275% (FRA) 2nd Sara Gallop with Bandreo, 69.363% (GBR) 6th Henrietta Cheetham with Schattentanzerin, 64.412% (GBR) CDI2* Middle Tour Internediate B 1st Sara Gallop with Bandreo, 69.792% (GBR) 6th Henrietta Cheetham with Schattentanzerin, 66.125% (GBR CDI2* Prix St Georges 1st Pauline Vanlandeghem with Sertorius De Rima Z, 72.010% (FRA) 7th Lisa Marriott with Valucio DH Z, 68.676% (GBR) 9th Dean Skeates with Super Blue, 67.843% (GBR) 11th Sarah Williams with Bohigas W, 67.304% (GBR) 12th Henrietta Cheetham with Dancer Khan, 67.010% (GBR) CDI2* Intermediate I 1st Pauline Vanlandeghem with Sertorius De Rima Z, 73.186% (FRA) 6th Henrietta Cheetham with Dancer Khan, 67.892% (GBR) 10th Lisa Marriott with Valucio DH Z, 66.471% (GBR) 12th Sarah Williams with Bohigas W, 66.275% (GBR) 18th Dean Skeates with Super Blue, 64.265% (GBR) CDI2* Intermediate I Freestyle 1st Pauline Vanlandeghem with Sertorius De Rima Z, 77.00% (FRA) 7th Henriatta Cheetham with Dancer Khan, 69.542% (GBR) 8th Sarah Williams with Bohigas W, 69.250% (GBR) 9th Lisa Marriott with Valucio DH Z, 68.875% (GBR) For full results click here Photo © Kevin Sparrow      
Wednesday, September 5

New at the LeMieux Nationals for 2018

Stop press – we’re excited to announce that we’ve secured Atkinson Action Horses to entertain you on Saturday and Sunday at the LeMieux National Championships, 20 – 23 September. In a new to the Nationals display, Atkinson Action Horses have provided horses for film and TV trained horses for spectacular live events in disciplines such as Spanish High School, airs above the ground, jousting and trick riding. Their ethos of ‘a free horse is a happy horse’ is a simple one but their high impact displays will leave a mark on you for their grace and beauty alongside explosive acrobatics and amazing stunts. For 20 years they’ve entertained, amazed and stunned crowds all over the globe and brought memorable scenes on both large and small screens including Poldark and Victoria; from cowboys to Cossacks, Spanish royalty to Victorian gents, Atkinsons have it covered! Have a look at their amazing show reel: If you want to catch them in action, alongside a great day out of top flight dressage action from the country’s leading riders and horses, the Nationals Masterclass presented by Anna Ross, shopping paradise and a great range of food and refreshments, buy a ticket for Saturday or Sunday today. Prices start from £18 for adults and £8 for children. The show also runs on Thursday and Friday when tickets are as little as £14 for the day for an adult. There’s VIP ticket options in our Andrews Bowen Nationals Pavillion plus covered grandstand seating for purchase too. Full details and ticket options are available here – but hurry as the discounted tickets are only on offer until 12 September . Tickets can be purchased on the gate at any time once the show has started so you can simply turn up. For the full lowdown on THE dressage party of the year, visit www.bdchampionships.com  
Wednesday, September 5

ID riders make their mark on BD

History was made on Saturday 1 September in a small corner of the West Midlands when the first Championships for riders with an Intellectual Disability were held in conjunction with the Riding for the Disabled under the BD umbrella. Held at and organised by Solihull Riding Club and run alongside the BD Equissage Pulse Summer Para Festival, the championships were held at three levels and riders were invited to take part following their strong results earlier in the year at the RDA regional qualifiers. A total of 26 riders came forward for the inaugural show under the watchful eyes of para judges Christine Porterfield and Wendy Bell. The walk test got the proceedings underway and it was the first rider down the centreline who went on to lead from start to finish. That rider was young Ellis Holdaway riding the magnificent Charlie from the Wenlo RDA group. Their score of 69.16% just couldn’t be bettered but his Wenlo group chum Jonathan Rigby, who also partnered Charlie, came closest with 68.19%, another cracking score. Just behind was Katie Marsden who posted a 64.58% riding Alice. Lee Lawrence was the victor in the walk trot test with Whisper with a healthy 66.12% just ahead of runners up Jessica White and Truffles. Ellis and Charlie made a second appearance on the podium in third with 64.5%. Competition was extra fierce in the largest and final class, walk, trot and canter. The winner’s sash went to convincing winners Kayla Pratt and her handsome piebald Hunky Dory with a fabulous 70% score – the only duo to break the magic barrier. Morgan Haines was second on Scout 63.42% and just a whisker behind was Kasia Dudek-McGee who scored 63.28% with Rio. Every rider who competed was invited to take part in the prizegiving to celebrate a magical day and they were treated to a meeting with triple European gold medallist Julie Payne – complete with her medals. Julie took time with the riders for a chat, advice and plenty of photos afterwards. Para dressage and showjumping rider Matt Dalley was enlisted by BD and the RDA to act as ambassador for the championships to help spread the word – which he did with his own amazing style – and was also a competitor with his horse Wimbledon III. Hot on the heels of a victory in showjumping the day before, Matt and ‘Womble’ then went on to finish sixth. He took to Facebook to say: “It was amazing to be a part of the first ID Dressage Championship at the BD Para Summer Championships last weekend. RDA and BD organised this together and I was proud to be a part of that team as RDA Ambassador, helping with publicity for the event.” This was the first inaugural RDA and ID championships. It was a great way to integrate the RDA riders and the Para riders.” British Dressage interim Para Director Julie Frizzell summed up the amazing day in saying; “I simply could not be prouder of the team I’ve been part of this weekend. World firsts, gallons of happy tears, recognising our wonderful families and support teams that enable us to do what we do. And of course, our equine partners. Thanks to everyone who has played a part in making it happen; it was a dream which we’ve worked hard to bring to reality. There’s much to build on for next year and beyond but what a dream beginning.”   Podium places: RDA walk test 1. Ellis Holdway with Charlie 69.16% 2. Jonathan Rigby with Charlie 68.19% 3. Katie Marsden with Alice 64.58% RDA walk and trot 1. Lee Lawrence with Whisper 66.12% 2. Jessica White with Truffles 65.87% 3. Ellis Holdway with Charlie 64.5% RDA walk, trot and canter 1. Kayla Pratt with Hunky Dory 70% 2. Morgan Haines with Scout 63.42% 3. Kasia Dudek-McGee with Rio 63.28% Full results – click here  
Wednesday, September 5

WCP Podium Potential Pathway applications open

Registration is open for the British Equestrian Federation’s UK Sport National Lottery and Sport England funded World Class Programme Podium Potential Pathway 2019-2021 squad, which now forms the first stage of the recently revised Equestrian performance pathway. The Podium Potential Pathway Programme, which replaces the former Excel Talent Programme, will bring the performance foundation skill development level into the main World Class performance pathway and looks to identify, support and develop athletes who demonstrate the potential to progress to Podium Potential in the future. Triple European para-dressage gold medallist Suzanna Hext, who is now a Podium athlete, has experienced all stages of the performance pathway after joining the Excel squad in 2015. Suzanna explains: “The programmes have helped me a huge amount, not only me as an athlete but also by providing support to my horses.  I have a lot of help at home but being able to link them up with the network of expert support available has allowed me to develop my performance even further.” The new structure of the World Class Programme pathway has been redeveloped to ensure the best support is provided to both human and equine athletes to promote their continued development at every level and enable Equestrian Team GBR to deliver medal success in the future. The programme supports athletes across the Olympic and Paralympic disciplines and is split into three different levels: Podium, Podium Potential and Podium Potential Pathway. The Podium Potential Pathway provides selected riders with the opportunity to have access to top equestrian specialists including: international coaches, HSSM (physiotherapists, psychologists) and ESSM (farriers, saddlers, vets) practitioners, via a series of rider performance camps. BEF Head of Performance Pathways, David Hamer explains: “This very important performance foundation stage of the pathway will help the younger athletes develop the necessary skills and gain knowledge which in the future will hopefully help them to achieve selection onto a British senior team. Athletes who meet the criteria will have the opportunity to benefit from top equestrian specialists and have a framework of support to further develop and progress them on their journey as an athlete.” Registration for the Podium Potential Pathway Programme is now open! Anyone wishing to apply for the Podium Potential Pathway squad should visit the Equestrian Team GBR website. The registration form and information on the selection process and timeline can be found here . Please note that the initial registration process is open 1 – 28 September 2018; any registrations submitted after this time will not be considered.  To refer to the minimum performance standards click here .
Tuesday, September 4

A blockbuster Home International for Eastern riders

The Eastern region is celebrating after taking the team title at the Senior Home International at Bishop Burton College in East Yorkshire (31 August – 2 September 2018). A total of 126 combinations and 31 teams contested this year’s episode of the annual flagship event for senior regional riders. The winning quartet, dubbed Eastern Mamma Mia, claimed the spoils with a grand total mark of 414.62 after two days of competition, ahead of South West Wood Ducks (410.41) and Central Foggy (406.16). Eastern’s Sarah Carmichael, Kelly Greaves, Marg Phizacklea and team debutant Jane Littlejohn - pictured with Northern Chair Vikki Hayton and BD Training Director Paul Hayler - led from start to finish, bringing great pride to the region which has not had its hands on the silverware since taking victory in Scotland in 2013. “Wow, what a great weekend!” enthused Eastern RDO Katharine Perry. “The Senior Home International has now been running for ten years, and I have been lucky enough to be involved with our teams, riders, trainers and support crew at each and every one. There are so many great memories and this weekend at Bishop Burton is right up there with them. It was very satisfying to bring the title home again. “From start to finish, our 20 riders were fun, keen and happy. Everyone socialised together all weekend, with husbands, wives, children, dogs, parents and friends all mixing in. The riders had the support of their team mates, and a sea of sky blue [the region’s colour] was to be seen cheering on all tests. My fabulous rider rep Hayley [Liddiard] and top trainer Mark [Ruddock] walked hundreds of miles to ensure everyone was helped and supported, and that spirit is what I love most about the Eastern Region. Winning the team competition with four of our amazing riders really was the cherry on top of an already great cake!” Sarah Carmichael who spearheaded the Eastern Mamma Mia team with her six-year-old mare Hoemathika M (Lord Leatherdale x Gribaldi), was delighted to also claim the individual Novice title which she sealed with score of 72.42% in Sunday’s Novice 38. The performance of the Bury St Edmunds rider and Hoemathika, who’s affectionately known as ‘Happy’, was duly awarded - both the British Dressage Supporters Club (BDSC) training bursary for the highest placed BDSC member, and a £75 Sheepgate Tack and Togs voucher for gaining the highest score of the weekend, went to the Suffolk 54-year-old. The Individual Elementary title went to Danielle Rhodes and none other than Tiger Tim, the traditional gypsy cob stallion who found fame taking a Novice national title in 2013 under Alysia Matravers. Now 13 and partnered by Danielle, he continues to impress and made his Medium debut a winning one back in July. Marg Phizacklea (58) and Good Guy, who were so instrumental in the winning team’s success, shone at their level – Medium – to claim the individual title. Marg, also from Bury St Edmunds and her seven-year-old Apache-sired gelding scored 69.0% and 68.64% in round one and two respectively to see off the rest of the field. The Advanced Medium/Prix St Georges individual honours went West to Wales as Laura Fisher (27) from Colwyn Bay and Sam the Man Veldhoek, her 16-year-old Belgian gelding, scored plus-69% in both their Advanced Mediums. Congratulations to all the riders who took part. British Dressage thanks the team at Bishop Burton and all involved for a hugely successful Senior Home International. Team Results – top three 1st - Eastern Mamma Mia, 414.62 Sarah Carmichael with Hoemathika M Kelly Greaves with Fentons Flint Marg Phizacklea with Good Guy Jane Littlejohn with Urban Knight 2nd - South West Wood Ducks, 410.41 Danielle Rhodes with Jannick Helen James with Hillgrove Rockwell Jessica Allies with Nabretto Sophie Quarterman with Knightswood Diamond Geezer 3rd - Central Foggy, 406.16 Lisa Sterrow with Montrel Skyline Casilda Courtier-Dutton with Flicker in Clover Shirley Wright with Vanilla Courage Madeleine Gardner with Whatapallaver Individual Champions: Novice - Sarah Carmichael with Hoemathika M (Eastern Mamma Mia) Elementary - Danielle Rhodes with Tiger Tim (South West Wood Ducks) Medium - Marg Phizacklea with Good Guy (Eastern Mamma Mia) Advanced Medium/Prix St Georges - Laura Fisher riding Sam the Man Veldhoek (Wales Lush) – Adv Med For full results click here .
Tuesday, September 4

Equissage Pulse Festival of Para Dressage

The competition was fierce at the thrilling Equissage Pulse Summer Festival of Para Dressage hosted at Solihull Riding Club last weekend (1 – 2 September 2018). Though the sunshine stayed away, the talent of our future Para stars shone brightly. Taking home the accolade of highest score of the show was Grade IV Silver Champion Rachel Collins. Rachel, hailing from Sandwich in Kent, scored a brilliant 69.56% for her ace test with her own Sandro Hit sired mare Ronja I. The 15-year-old Oldenburg impressed the judges to top the podium ahead of Katie Radzik with Principle FB and Laura Gulliver with Woodcroft Natalia. Speaking from her Facebook page, Rachel said “What a weekend! Update to follow, but I’m totally over the moon with Ronja. What a special mare. She has been super all weekend and today all the pieces fell into place. I had one of those rides you never want to end. Thankfully the judges agreed and we are Equissage Pulse Para Grade IV Silver Champions!” 16-year-old Leonie Saffy was a popular winner in the Grade III Silver section with her own 20-year-old gelding Gemswood Morning Sun. The charming duo danced around their test to earn a win with 67.39%. The formidable partnership are no strangers to the big time having previously competed at the Para Winter Championships and Bishop Burton CPEDI2*. Young Leonie recognises Charlotte Dujardin as her idol and hopes to have a future career in dressage; her win at Solihull sees a successful return to the championship scene following an 11 hour operation on her spine in late 2016. Born with Escobar Syndrome, Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita and Neuromuscular Scoliosis, Leonie started riding as therapy and hasn’t looked back since! Also earning the spoils in the Equissage Pulse Para Silver Championships were Hope Hayward with Cadeau K (Grade V), Denise Smith with Sheepcote Catkin (Grade III) and Alice Lundy with Carlton Cadman I (Grade I). Three debut riders, Rebecca Goodwin (Grade IV), Vanessa Palmer (Grade III) and Jane Ogden (Grade II), each took home a title in the Equissage Pulse Para Bronze Championships with stellar marks. Nottingham-based Jane also managed to notch up half of her Winter Championship qualification points in Saturday’s classes; Jane and her Irish bred gelding Fairview Romeo train with former Youth international rider Elspeth Day of Lambley Paddocks Dressage. Congratulations to all who took part in this brilliant Championship. Thanks go to generous series sponsor Equissage, as well as to the dedicated team at Solihull Riding Club. Results Grade V Silver 1st Hope Hayward with Cadeau K, 65.46% Grade IV Silver 1st Rachel Collins with Ronja I, 69.56% Grade III Silver 1st Denise Smith with Sheepcote Catkin, 66.30% Grade II Silver 1st Leonie Saffy with Gemswood Morning Sun, 67.39% Grade I Silver 1st Alice Lundy with Carlton Cadman I, 69.37% Grade IV Bronze 1st Rebecca Goodwin with Mr Bertram, 64.00% Grade III Bronze Vanessa Palmer with Encore, 66.38% Grade II Bronze 1st Jane Ogden with Fairview Romeo, 61.46% For full results click here . For pictures/extended coverage from the event please visit our BD Para Matters Facebook page .
Friday, August 31

Superb Sheepgate u25s

Now in its 17th year, the ever popular Sheepgate Under-25 Championships once again welcomed a stellar line up of youth talent who travelled from as far afield as Scotland, Wales and the West Country to Lincolnshire, all vying for a precious place on the podium. Fifteen-year-old Olivia Whitelaw (pictured with Northern RDO Jo Byrne) topped off a memorable season, winning two titles ̶ the BDSC FEI Pony Championship and Wolds Exclusive Bling Medium Championship ̶ with her own nine-year-old Dutch-bred gelding Brouwershavens Viceroy and was full of praise for these championships, which also provided live streaming from all three competition arenas. “I’ve been coming to Sheepgate since I was seven and riding as a Fledgling ̶ it’s a great atmosphere, always friendly and supportive; even if you’re having a bad day it’s great!” said Olivia. The partnership, which train with Andrew Fletcher and Darryl Thickitt, have survived a “roller-coaster year” and come out the other side smiling. Olivia, who has been riding since she was just two years old and a member of BD since she was seven bought “Leo” as a six-year-old and have gone from competing at Novice level to winning FEI Pony tests in just 18 months together. “Last year was testing as Leo was just coming into his own when he bronced in the field, slipped on landing and burst his hock capsule in five places so it blew up like a balloon,” said Olivia. “Luckily, we were referred to surgeon Ian Wright at Newmarket Equine Hospital who operated and did a brilliant job. We followed their rehab advice to the letter with eight weeks’ box rest, and three months of walking in hand but time and patience has paid off. “Leo and I have a strong bond and I’m so proud of him. He has the biggest heart and always tries for you,” said Olivia, who also credits sports psychologist Moira Lafferty for helping her through the ups and downs and developing mental strength to remain focussed and positive during training and competing. “Leo’s a bit of an alpha male and likes to be in charge, but he’s also very kind and has taught me not only to be a better rider, but also to accept that when you’re on a journey, things are not always going to be straightforward!” Also enjoying stepping onto the top step of the podium after a challenging year was nineteen-year-old European Young Rider team member Charlotte Dicker, who claimed the Top Spec Young Rider Championship with her 13-year-old Stedinger mare Sabatini, who she describes as “a bit of a hothead and a diva”. “Soli’s always been a bit difficult and tricky to ride, but although it’s taken time, we’ve got a good relationship now and I’m proud of her” said Charlotte, a UKCC Level 2 coach and yard rider based with her mother Anne Dicker and grandmother Jennie Loriston Clarke at Catherston Stud in Hampshire. Having taken the expressive but sensitive Hanoverian through the levels herself, including Junior teams in 2014 and 2015, Sabatini was gifted to Charlotte by her owner Ian McRobbie last year in recognition of their achievements. “Before I started riding her, she’d had two foals and was turned away in a field, but I fell in love with her even though at first she tried to get me off every day!” Charlotte, who has received a wild card for the Intermediate I at this year’s nationals, has overcome a series of highs and lows this season. Having cemented their step up to Young Riders with two high scoring wins at Keysoe CDI in March, Charlotte missed the winter championships after fracturing her spine while eventing, which resulted in a week in hospital followed by eight weeks in a back brace. Charlotte says it was thanks to the support of her family and home team who helped her get back on and keep going. Within weeks this combination returned to form making their mark at the Hagen CDIO/CDI ‘Future Champions’ show with the highest British Young Rider team test mark (68.87%) followed by the highest scoring British rider in the team test at the Europeans in Fontainebleau (71.12% and 10th place). “Sheepgate was a great show and although these weren’t our best tests, it gave us an opportunity to take a few more risks and try out some different things in the arena - some worked, some didn’t! Now, I’m looking forward to riding Soli at Stoneleigh as she enjoys a big atmosphere and always rises to the occasion!” The Dengie FEI Junior title went to 16-year-old Charlotte Snape and her 16.1hh Hanoverian gelding Camelot III (by Barabas) from Beverley, Yorks, who pulled off a winning test scoring 68.38% on the second day after lying fourth (65.95%) after the first day. “I was over the moon and couldn’t quite believe I’d won because after the first day he felt a bit tired, but when we came out of the arena I was so proud of him and felt we’d both done as well as we could,” said Charlotte, who has owned “Coco” for only 18 months after buying him locally from Becky Oakley, who now also trains them. “He’s a lovely cheeky, chirpy chap and all he wants to do is to please and he just keeps giving. This is our first international season together and it’s a different world. Coco has taught me how to ride and taken me to PSG level which I never expected or dreamed of. “Before I got him, I was an intro rider on a 13.2hh all-rounder pony, but Coco, who has an amazing temperament and puts up with my mistakes has been incredibly patient with me. He makes me smile every time I ride him, even when things don’t go to plan!” The Equetech Prelim title went to Anna Roberts and Jeanette Macwhinnie’s eye-catching Welsh Section C Landsbury Indianna Jones on 72.36% who has also qualified for the Ridden M&M Championships at Olympia. Jade Struthers and EV Amore Mia, a six-year-old skewbald mare owned and bred by Lindsay Moffatt, made the long journey south from the Scottish Borders to claim the hotly contested Laura Woodcock Dressage Novice Championship on 76.8%, 4.5% clear of second place former Petplan Equine High Achiever Award winner Charlotte Elizabeth Barber and her Dutch-bred gelding CE Floisou on 72.37%. Jade and “Maria” (by Amour G) were also third on 69.54% in the 30-strong Tucker Building Services Elementary Championships which was won by Essex event rider Albert Padfield and his Dutch-bred gelding A on 70.23%. Fifteen-year-old Junior rider Jessica Sanderson from York and her 15-year-old grey Dutch mare Wanour S, who represented Britain at Hickstead this year, won the KBIS Insurance Services Ltd Advanced Medium Championship on 70.48%. Sophia Marston and Solitaire II won the Sheepgate Challenge (Prelim and Novice) and also scored the highest percentage in a freestyle class (77.22) winning a cash prize from The Studio at Sheepgate, while the highest percentage in a non-music class (80.68%) went to Emily Collings riding Chiddock Hour Glass who went home with a stunning pair of Konigs Boots. The Elementary Sheepgate Challenge was won by Chloe Peat and Cremmdalla Crem scoring 72.50% and 68.97% over two days of competition. The Welsh Draig Berig won the Prelim team title, the Welsh Draig Ciwt won the Novice team title, and the elementary team title went to Team Eastern 2. A huge well done to all the prize winners – and everyone who took part! This championship continues to attract record entries proving not only that the future of dressage is looking bright, but also that Sheepgate’s well known signature message: “Well Worth The Journey” is stronger than ever. Full results - click here By Barbara Young
Thursday, August 30

Summer Music Championships hit the right note

It’s been a long held aim for many to develop the increasingly popular freestyle competitions into a bi-annual championship affair and last weekend (24 – 26 August), that became reality as the inaugural Summer Music Festival took place at Bury Farm in Buckinghamshire. It was also the first occasion to host a Freestyle Championship at Preliminary level. Six levels with three sections proved a busy show but there were some great performances. Preliminary Michelle Parish (52) from Towcester in Northamptonshire won the Preliminary Music Freestyle Bronze Championship with her daughter Emily’s Clohessys Sinbin, scoring 69.815% from judges Sue Rowlands (E), Richard Baldwin (C) and Zoe Freeney (M). Clohessy’s Sinbin is a nine-year-old, 15.2hh, black tobiano gelding of Irish origin. Wittily named after the Irish rugby player Peter Clohessy who has a nightclub in Limerick called the Sin Bin, he’s a true family all-rounder who’ll turn his hoof to anything, including side-saddle, eventing and hunting. Second and third were neck-and-neck on a score of 67.31%, but it was 61-year-old Bella Craven with her Irish 15-year-old Coletto Boy who had the edge on collectives to take the runners-up position. Third spot on the podium was claimed by Angela Marsh (60) from Shrewsbury with her British-bred pony, Kirtle Amber. Yorkshire rider Lizzie Trask (28) claimed the Preliminary Music Freestyle Silver with her 18-year-old Irish Draught gelding Lisreagh Paddy. Familiar faces on the Quest circuit, Lizzie and the handsome bright chestnut who’ve been enjoying good results at Prelim level, relished this opportunity to show off their moves to music. Their score of 66.48% won them the class ahead of Ceri Phipps-Hewlett and Hurstpark Tikkaboo (66.02%) and Sally Pidsley and Tranwheal Tineth Moon (63.71%). Runaway winner of the Preliminary Music Freestyle Gold was former figure skater Sarah Clarke (29) and her talented six-year-old Negro son, Hiwatha La Perle. The pair achieved a super result of 75.19% ahead of Fiona Thurnell and Humbug X (66.02%). “Third best score of the Championships out of over 350 entries...I’ll take that!” says Sarah. Novice In the Novice division on Saturday it was Derbyshire’s Helen Randell who scooped the Bronze title with her own Ffion d’Or. Riding to music compiled by Fay Butlin, the duo posted 68.43% for the win. Helen’s British bred chestnut, by Lion d’Or, has had a great season dancing and in qualifying for Bury Farm even managed a spectacular 80% score. They’ve been competing together for two years and mixed Quest and straight competition in their first year, successfully qualifying for a Petplan Equine Area Festival and the Quest Championships. It was also a British bred chestnut mare who took second in the form of Gran Diamond with rider Isabel Forman with 67.78% while Yvonne Eaves (69) was third with the delightful skewbald Clogheen Bella II on 67.69%. The Silver champion’s sash went to BD Trainee Judge Stephane Gaunt from Staffordshire riding her own seven year old Horatio IV by Heinrich Heine. The duo have been competing together for three seasons and have reached the dizzy heights of Petplan Equine Area Festival Final level in 2017 and Winter Regionals this spring. Their 71.57% average over the three judges Carolyn Alston, Judy Firmston-Williams and Heather Ashley gave them the win by just over 1%. Sarah Ayres and Sarah Beveridge’s skewbald Sir Archibold finished as runners up and Stacey Jones riding her own River Rio filled third spot with 70%. Elder Klatzko was delighted with her win in the Gold section with Dior VII, horse she rescued as a skinny, frightened yearling who she’s spent time gaining the trust of. The black gelding is now six and had formed quite a bond with Elder; the duo finished eighth in the Hickstead British Young Horse Championships last month and are Stoneleigh bound in the Childeric Saddles Elementary Gold Championships next month. “I’m so proud of my boy Dior!” Elder exclaimed on Facebook. A score of 72.41% was enough to edge ahead of second placed combination Maria Griffin with Cerruti II whom she jointly owns with Adrian Baker who scored 71.85%. Para international rider Amanda Shirtcliffe was just behind in third riding Jon Mcfarland’s New Princess on 71.76% Elementary Successful duo Lucie Stokoe and Dutch bred mare Dolores added to their impressive Elementary Bronze record with victory on 69.23 but Patricia Smith and Helios, who’d won the Bronze Championship the previous day, pushed them hard, just 0.26 behind. Emma Grant made her 11 hour journey from Aberdeen a worthy one when she piloted Mini Echo to third on 68.14. In the Silver section, Sally Green romped home with a comfortable victory with her British bred six year old, Keystone Rhia, by Keystone Rhondeo. All three judges, Carole Thornton, Kim Ratcliffe and Pat Watts were unanimous in having the pair to win and their 74.55% gave them a 4.55% margin over second placed Anna Bates with Jolianna on 70% while Fiona Newall was third with Fendy VCG in 69.87%. It was another 4% margin of victory in the Gold section when crowd favourite Jos K, the eye-catching Friesian stallion impressed under rider Katharine Lewis as the pair cruised to a cracking score of 76.67% with their Gaynor Colbourn music. They’ve been on fire this season but the winner’s sash, their second of the championship, clearly meant a lot and was fitting proof of their hard work. It was the bridesmaid position for Maria Griffin and Cerruti II with 72.5% for a second championship class and Sarah Williams with San Remo Hitt filled third spot with 71.6%. Medium Eventing hopeful Lucy Robinson took a brief break from the sport to partner Jane Boothroyd’s impeccably bred Johnson Jaz to take the Medium Bronze accolade. Lucy has been riding the Johnson-sired mare solidly this year after sharing with owner Jane previously. Their solid score of 66.56% just gave them the advantage over Catherine Tristram and Lynwood Formula on 66%. Third went to Jane Chapman and Bankers Draft on 65.39%. Lucy, who works with Olympic eventer Jeanette Brakewell, enjoys her dressage but eventing is still her discipline of choice! In the Silver , it was a first win for Hampshire rider Katharine Lewis and gorgeous black Friesian Jos K (they went on to win the Elementary Gold as previously described). At seven, he’s still establishing himself at Medium but even with some green moments, the judges aggregate was 74.22%, over 2% ahead of second placed Lucinda Bellis and Windhover II. Pony rider Lavinia Johnson finished third with 68.78%. “He was really on my side in there,” said Katharine. “He loves the music and I can feel him rise to the occasion and the beat. He really tries so hard!” The Gold was won by prolific duo Charlie Sawyer and Chico Too – names we’re very familiar seeing on the winner’s rostrum. 72.89% was the score for the 14 year old Contendro gelding, owned by mum Sarah. Chico has had is fair share of health issues but careful management keeps him fit and well with Charlie in tune with him to sense when he’s not at his best. On winning his seventh title, Charlie was clearly happy with his partner; “I’m really pleased with him. He continues to improve and it’s nice to be able to compete at the level below where we’re training as it consolidates the training. With him, we work with what we’ve got and I’ve been lucky that the good days have fallen when we need them to be. He’s so reliable now and I’m so pleased with his performance today.” Northamptonshire’s Craig Millard was runner up with Shirley Rixon’s KWPN eight year old Flores L with 70.44% and third spot belonged to Laura Wollen and Woodcroft Francisco on 70.28%. Advanced Medium Cheshire pony rider Lavinia Johnson capped a great show, and summer, on the final day by taking victory in the Bronze division with 70.06% with her ‘mini horse’ Dublin – the only combination in the class break the magic number. They’ve had an amazing summer together with success at shows like Hickstead CDI, Bolesworth and Sheepgate earlier that week. A beaming Lavinia said; “A few mistakes today but he keeps getting better and better. We’ve had an amazing summer and this has made it even better! I have to thank my trainers Jackie Bevan and Isobel Wessels plus everyone who’s helped me get this far. And to BD for putting these new championships on!” The second place rosette went to Caroline Evans riding her own Zidane IV on 68.78% and Fay Butlin completed the top three with Freckleton Melody with 67.06%. In the Silver section Essex rider Annabel Jenks celebrated ten years with her equine partner Wachtmeester with a championship title. Now 15, Wachtmeester has been a star for Annabel over their decade together with numerous Area Festival, Regional and Championship appearances but to win is very special. They ended on 71.94% just ahead of Holly Colgate-Hardaway and her huge Dalvanges Lorenzo on 71.28%. Medium Gold Champions Charlie Sawyer and Chico Too completed the podium with a score of 68.39%. We caught Annabel as she was rushing to make her journey east; “He went in and instantly felt absolutely super. He was forward and supple but he really does love competiting to music! Thanks to my trainer Jill Day for all her support and guidance.” The final section on Bank Holiday Monday to end a fabulous three days wast the Gold and it went to the competitor who probably had the longest journey, Eilidh Grant with her mum Lorraine’s Dutch bred mare, Eranda Retto. The judging panel of Anita Darken, Claire Ballantyne and Joyce Head all placed the duo top of the six starters with an average score of 76.17%. Eilidh also took the rosette for the best under 25 rider…bittersweet as it’s her final year she qualifies for the age group. Eilidh took the mare on four years ago as a project ‘problem’ horse but after a first tricky few months, she built up a great relationship with the 16hh mare and they’ve not looked back. It was to be their final Advanced Medium Freestyle together as the mare is now working toward Small Tour, with an international debut planned for 2019. Eilidh commented; “It’s been well worth the 11 hour journey! I was pleased with third in the PSG on Saturday as she’s still a bit green at that level so it’s great to win today in what’s her final Advanced Medium music test. She’s not been easy but once we get her two times and pirouettes nailed, we have high hopes for her.” The duo make the long journey south again next month for their final straight Advanced Medium test in the Equine Construction Championship at the LeMieux National Championships. The final rider up the centreline Olivia Towers was second with Mercian Edjena on 72.5% and Sara-Jane Lanning topped a great show with a further frilly in third with 71.06 aboard Mi Amigo. Prix St Georges Surrey rider Nina Rahmatallah brought a taste of Iberia to Bury Farm in the Bronze with her Flamenco-themed freestyle programme aboard her attractive grey Lusitano gelding, Acaso. Nina (37) and 13-year-old Acaso, who haven’t been out of the top three all season, were awarded a score average of 66.54% from judges Pam Bushell (E), Jane McGarel-Groves (C) and Joyce Head (M). Acaso was bred by one of the UK’s leading promoters and suppliers of Lusitano horses, Sussex Lusitanos. They took to Facebook to say; “Congratulations to Nina Rahmatallah and her purebred Lusitano gelding Acaso - PSG winners at the BD Music Festival Finals at Bury Farm. Acaso is one of our UK homebred horses - breeder: Sussex Lusitanos (Roger Barnett) sire: Numerario (Embaixador x Baliarina, bred by Coudelaria Romao Tavares) dam: Obreira (Hostil x Vapra, bred by Guilherme Borba) Both sire and dam are UK Champions - time now for one of their offspring! Well done Nina and Acaso!” On the same score as the Champion, but forced to settle for second on collectives was Rachel Patrick (50) who’d made the trip from Cornwall with her Dutch-bred gelding, Nymo. Third went to another West Country rider Shayne Mathieson (36) with her 15hh gelding Cue Tip. Shayne ‘stumbled across’ the diminutive horse as an unkempt, unbacked four-year-old when she and her husband were based in Cyprus and subsequently took him on as a project. On their return to the UK, the couple couldn’t bear to leave ‘Rio’ behind and so home he came. The little bay has since gone from strength to strength, attending the Winter Championships and qualifying for Regionals at every level up to PSG. Merseyside rider Cazzy Derby was crowned Prix St Georges Music Freestyle Silver Champion with the winning score of 67.25%. Cazzy (54) was partnered by her 10-year-old De Noir daughter, Frenderups De Nice. Taking the runner-up spot was Ireland’s Josephine Delahoyde and Lets Go 110 (66.17%), with Angela Denning (71) and her 18-year-old Westphalian gelding Di-Conti, third (65.71%). List 1 Judge and Grand Prix rider Sara-Jane Lanning (48) won the Music Freestyle Prix St Georges Gold with her 16-year-old Small Tour ride Mi Amigo (by Zardin Firfod). Sara-Jane and the Danish-bred 16-year-old who she co-owns with partner Andrew Griffin scored 72.75%. Second belonged to Daisy Coakley and Aramis T (70.25%) with third place going to Eilidh Grant and Eranda Retto. Three days, 18 classes – a huge first time championship which the team at Bury Farm ran with great efficiency and skill, huge congratulations to them for making it happen. Also to all the officials, judges, stewards, writers and volunteers who made it happen. Lastly to all the riders and their connections who embraced the new summer opportunity to ‘dance’ – congratulations all. Remember, if you have any comments, ideas, and suggestions on the Championships and how they're run, please email them to feedback@britishdressage.co.uk. Class results – click here Championship results – click here  
Thursday, August 30

Super Saturday @ the LeMieux Nationals

Saturday’s packed programme at the LeMieux National Championships has been further boosted with the news that Brightwells are bringing their first dressage foal auction to Stoneleigh! Held in the main LeMieux arena in the evening on 22 September, the Elite Foals Sale, in partnership with the Anglo European Studbook (AES), will feature a first-rate selection of dressage foals with outstanding proven bloodlines. The AES team have travelled the country evaluating foals for the sale and are delighted to present around 20 of the best dressage youngsters available at present in the UK. Sires represented include Negro, U-Genius, Sezuan, Dream On, Belissimo M, Secret, Fürst Heinrich, Johnson, Jazz and Gribaldi. For the full catalogue – click here . The sale gets underway at 7:30pm under floodlights but why not join us for the afternoon when you can watch the dressage action including the showcase LeMieux Grand Prix class, view the foals and have a turn around our 80-strong tradestand village. Tickets are available for purchase via the website or Hotline - the Box Office closes on 12 September, after this you’ll need to buy them on the gate. At 6:30pm the doors to the Andrews Bowen Nationals Pavilion will be open to all our visitors (not just those with a ticket) so you’ll have a prime viewing – and bidding - spot for the auction. Light bites and a bar will be available for you to purchase refreshments. For more information on the AES & Brightwells Elite Foal Sale, visit www.brightwells.com or contact 01293 871701. For further information on the dressage party of the year, the LeMieux National Dressage Championships, 20 – 23 September, visit www.bdchampionships.com or call 07791 318721.
Wednesday, August 29

Super Saturday @ the LeMeiux Nationals

Saturday’s packed programme at the LeMieux National Championships has been further boosted with the news that Brightwells are bringing their first dressage foal auction to Stoneleigh! Held in the main LeMieux arena in the evening on 22 September, the Elite Foals Sale, in partnership with the Anglo European Studbook (AES), will feature a first-rate selection of dressage foals with outstanding proven bloodlines. The AES team have travelled the country evaluating foals for the sale and are delighted to present around 20 of the best dressage youngsters available at present in the UK. Sires represented include Negro, U-Genius, Sezuan, Dream On, Belissimo M, Secret, Fürst Heinrich, Johnson, Jazz and Gribaldi. For the full catalogue – click here . The sale gets underway at 7:30pm under floodlights but why not join us for the afternoon when you can watch the dressage action including the showcase LeMieux Grand Prix class, view the foals and have a turn around our 80-strong tradestand village. Tickets are available for purchase via the website or Hotline - the Box Office closes on 12 September, after this you’ll need to buy them on the gate. At 6:30pm the doors to the Andrews Bowen Nationals Pavilion will be open to all our visitors (not just those with a ticket) so you’ll have a prime viewing – and biding - spot for the auction. Light bites and a bar will be available for you to purchase refreshments. For more information on the AES & Brightwells Elite Foal Sale, visit www.brightwells.com or contact 01293 871701. For further information on the dressage party of the year, the LeMieux National Dressage Championships, 20 – 23 September, visit www.bdchampionships.com or call 07791 318721.
Tuesday, August 28

Brilliant Bronze beginnings at Bury Farm

The first ever British Dressage Bronze Championships proved to be a resounding success for riders just starting out with BD or those who’re new to a level. Held at the user-friendly venue of Bury Farm in Buckinghamshire, the competition ran over three days with optional warm up classes before a two round format over Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 August at Prelim to Advanced Medium levels. For many this was a first chance to stay away from home and the Bury Farm had pulled out the stops to give them a Championship feel. With two tests and, most cases, six different judges’ comments, the Championships were a great learning experience for the competitors as well as a great competition. Millie Easton was crowned the inaugural Prelim Bronze Champion with her own Annagh Girl after two great performances. The 14 year old from East Sussex only started competing with British Dressage last October but she’s been flying with ‘Princess’ ever since, never finishing out of the top three and the title was just reward for their hard work. A student at Uckfield College, Millie also events but nine year old Princess clearly has a talent for flat work. It was Welsh rider Sally Howell with Lucinda Fawcitt’s Son of Orion who held the advantage after day one with a grand 71.49% but Millie and Princess pulled out all the stops on Sunday to post 69.73%, the highest of the day to finish on 139.33% overall to take the title and snazzy rosette for the highest u25 rider, just over 1% ahead of Sally in second overall and the final podium spot went to Caroline Ganjou and Hedron. The Novice Bronze title was a tough battle but Twyford Mill Equestrian team member Laura Green came out on top with her own Dutch bred Ireldo L. With a CV which boasts working with horses for TV and film including shoots for Game of Thrones, War and Peace and King Arthur, Laura has a knack for producing young horses and her talented five year old looks to be a star in the making having already qualified for the LeMieux Nationals at Prelim level and the Petplan Equine Area Festival Finals at Novice. Laura and ‘Hoffles’, from his sire Hofrat, shared the lead with Olivia Walker and QEG Lux after the first day with the judging panel of Lotte Olsen, Mary Robins and Carol Hogg unable to separate their performances worth of 71.55%. Sunday dawned wet and windy but young Hoffles wasn’t put off and impressed for 73.23% to top the 12-strong entry. Olivia still managed a 70%+ score but couldn’t quite match Laura, she did however scoop the lovely rosette for the highest rider under 25 while Amy Day with Prince William MBS completed the podium. The Elementary Bronze title went to Wokingham veteran rider Patricia Smith with her charming chestnut partner Helios, by KEC Diamond Millinium who’s a grandson of the legendary King of Diamonds. The duo came together three years ago when Patricia bought him from a dealing having lightly showed. They’ve since blossomed in dressage, starting in Team Quest with a group from their local Wokingham Riding Club before going solo and enjoying success at Prelim and Novice in the Draught Associated Championships, Petplan Equine Area Festivals and Winter Championships. They headed Saturday’s preliminary round with 69.94% but Patricia revealed she was apprehensive about the second test as it was a more difficult Elementary test with two medium trot lines. “He hasn’t got flashy Warmblood paces so I have to spot on for the good marks,” she said. She needn’t have worried as ‘Ozzy’ was on great from in the windy, wet conditions and again topped the class with 67.18%. Patricia was clearly delighted with the win and was quick to praise both her horse and support team; “He’s perfect! Ozzy has been a delight to train and compete. I’m enjoying the shoe being on the other foot now as I supported by husband Terry for years when he trained racehorses but now he’s my head groom! Thanks too to my daughter Jade Dawson who I train with and has just started as a BD judge. I can just ring her and she puts me right when I’m in a muddle! Ozzy’s favourite treat is bananas so there will be extras tonight!” Just last month, they won their first Petplan Equine Area Festival at Crofton Manor so the lovely Elementary Bronze Champion sash isn’t the first in Ozzy’s wardrobe. Second place went to Hillary Janion with QEG Lux and third was Jane Collins and Coady Bay Artesienne. In the Medium Bronze , it was a lovely tale of youth and experience which won the championship. 14 year old Gracie Catling partnered Helen Christie’s 19 year old Silvano KR. Gracie has competed Silvano for just one season but he’s obviously enjoying teaching his young partner as they’ve been in the top four of all their Elementary and Medium starts. A fantastic 70.75% on the first day of competition in Medium 61 put them top as the only pairing to break the magic 70% barrier while 67.02% in the more tricky Medium 69 was enough to top the class and take a resounding 3.6% victory over Victoria Johnson and German-bred Temujin. Lucie Dunkeld and Barchetta were third. Area Festival Finals are next on the agenda for Gracie and Silvano having qualified for the Petplan Equine series second rounds at both Elementary and Medium levels. The Advanced Medium Bronze Champions Hannah Bown and her own Sandro’s Storm are testament to how hard work, patience and dedication can pay off. Hannah juggles training and competing ‘Stanley’ with work as a full time Diagnostic Radiographer and with 12 hour day or night shifts, riding can be difficult. She admitted he’d only been ridden once in the week leading to their trip to Bury Farm from Hampshire but a strong 64.57% on Saturday was followed with a class topping 66.58% on Sunday which gave them the overall win. An elated Hannah said; “His changes are still very green but today it all came together. He’s a quick thinker but can be a bit laid back at times – he’s just the nicest horse to have around. We all adore him, he’s just like a big Labrador and to me, he’s perfect in every way!” She’s had him for five years and trained him with the help of UKCC Level 3 coach and list 1 judge Sara-Jane Lanning who Hannah thanked for fitting lessons in around her erratic shifts. “Her dedication is astounding – she’ll come to me for a lesson straight from a 12 hour night shift!” exclaimed Sara-Jane. Last year Stanley underwent surgery for a bone cyst on his jaw. A small lump which vets thought was harmless started to grow and after x-rays and CT scans, Tom Hughes of Liphook Equine Hospital decided an operation was required. It put Stanley’s future in jeopardy as Tom had never experienced anything similar and it was unsure if surgery would be successful. A successful operation and six months off, the duo haven’t looked back and a subsequent scan has showed the void left by the cyst has filled with bone so the future is very positive. A fantastic 2018 season isn’t quite finished for the pair as they now have the Petplan Equine Area Festival Finals to look forward to having finished second at Advanced Medium at Wellington. Denise Fryer was second with her own British bred Keystone Starstruck which she’s produced from Novice herself and third went to Susannah Givons and Baroness. A massive thank you to all the riders who supported the championships in their first year! And to the team at Bury Farm, the judges, stewards, writers and officials who made it happen. We’ve had some really useful feedback already to help us build on but if you attended and have any comments, please share them on feedback@britishdressage.co.uk . Class results – click here Championship results – click here
Wednesday, August 22

UPDATED: LeMieux Nationals '18 wild cards

British Dressage can now announce the wild cards for this year’s LeMieux National Dressage Championships. Congratulations to all the riders, owners and horses concerned. PLEASE NOTE – The close of entries date for wild cards is Friday 24 August 2018. NO late entries will be accepted. All Championship packs have been sent out first class today to the RIDER who qualified the horse. Please contact the office immediately if you will not be attending the National Championships to enable your place to be passed down to the next eligible combination. Backinaction Preliminary Silver Katherine McGrail, Floreat Heartbeat, 71.78% Rosie Langbridge, Hawk Valley Morning Star, 70.46% Debbie Boylan-White, Linzgarth Royal Millenium, 70.00% Rachel Andrews, Gonzo, 69.94% Ruby Lewin, CNS Cob Marley, 69.89% Mairead McGrath, Proud Mairi, 69.83% Kate Vince, Damaskas, 69.77% Jennifer Rushmer, Carvella, 69.60% Helen Tegg, Pinto IV, 69.54% Rebecca Dawes, Ebony VI 69.43% Megan White, Don Nikita, 69.43% Col 212 Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver Nicola Pearce, Keystone Quartz, 70.37% Chloe Hill, Bonhard Alexander, 70.19% Lisa Clarkson, Giannova, 69.94% Karen Denness, Gues, 69.63% Bethany Edginton, Frankel, 69.44% Sarah Clack, Haybrook Welita, 69.26% Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold Darren Hicks, Diamond Cut 2, 73.09% Nicky Heale, Furstinclaire, 72.10% Nicola Buchanan, St Giles Bob Bon, 71.73% Michael Eilberg, MSJ Furstin Diaz, 71.73% Jezz Palmer, Swanmore Wynter, 71.48% Antonia Brown, SJL Baks Zacco, 71.42% Nicola Naylor, Felix, 71.23% Elizabeth Allen, Heraldik, 70.86% Jessica Thompson, A.D.Destination, 70.68% Childéric Saddles Elementary Silver Robert Barker, Fidelious, 76.51% Clair Johnston, Sensation, 74.01% Fiona Newall, Fendy VCG, 73.85% Jenny Ainscough, Showstar, 73.33% Lucy Robinson, Private Dancer, 73.02% Louise Crutcher, Tantoni Fiametta, 72.34% Abigail Doherty, Granada V, 72.14% Hazel McCorriston, Blue Hors Zagato, 71.82% Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold Jessica Dunn, KD Flying Dream, 72.08% Jessica Dunn, Helga, 70.73% Sarah Williams, San Remo Hitt, 70.36% Jo Stoyell, Movinight, 69.95% Jo Barry, Hidalgo II, 69.69% Melissa Chapman, DHI Hinke, 69.69% Nicola Naylor, Felix, 69.53% Anya Kolleth, Frings 2, 69.38% Col 169 TopSpec Medium Silver Emma Littlewood, Expo, 69.46% Robert Barker, Woodlander Romance, 69.10% Annabella Pidgley, Cognac IX, 68.87% Tyler Bradshaw, Gijsbert, 68.78% Katherine Lewes, Albertho B, 68.69% Brendan Tegg, Foxcourt A Maddonna, 68.51% Camilla James, Dianti, 68.51% Isobel Goodwin, Gameboys Welcome, 68.06% Caroline Hunt, Maverick Mat, 68.02% TopSpec Medium Gold Maya Goldberg, Half Moon Delphi 2, 72.30% Ruth Edge, PSH Twilight, 72.25% Phoebe Peters, Classic Flamboyant, 71.31% Megan Barrat, Valido's Starlight, 69.91% Sophie Taylor, Le Chiffre, 69.82% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Taylor Denness, Amaro O, 69.17% Lucy Baker, Voolra, 69.12% Holly Colgate-Hardaway, Dalvangs Lorenzo, 68.99% Kirsty Imm, Don-Davidoff Cl, 68.95% Scott McLellan, Lemiroff LS, 68.64% Linda Prescott- Clements, Menelaos, 68.38% Jane Howard, Bjorsun 68.38% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold No spaces currently Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold Premier Leagues Emile Faurie, Café Caletta, 73.46% Lucy Amy, Extra Time, 73.33% Sarah Millis, Behroez, 72.79% Regionals Lisa Marriott, Valucio, 71.89 Kate Lister, World Exclusive, 69.74% Lara Edwards, Jazzed Up, 69.56% Sara Jane Lanning, Mi Amigo, 69.47% Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Gold Premier League Charlotte Dicker, Sabatini, 72.41% Owen Cooper, Don Dante II, 71.93 Sarah Millis, Behroez, 71.73% Michael Eilberg, Fuerst Sinclair, 71.32% Regionals Kate Cowell, Sirocco, 70.35% Kimberley Seaby, Wiona G, 69.65% Lisa Marriott, Valucio, 69.56% Cavalor Intermediate II Gold No spaces currently Grand Prix Gold Gareth Hughes, Classic Briolinca, 74.43% Emile Faurie, Delatio, 73.60% Richard Davison, Bubblingh, 73.39 Sonnar Murray Brown, Erlentanz, 71.18% Michael Eilberg, Marakov, 70.41%
Wednesday, August 22

Summer Regional Championships: Keysoe

The final Regional Championships of the summer took place last week at Keysoe Equestrian in Bedfordshire (11 – 13 August 2018), settling the final qualifications for the LeMieux National Championships in September. The Mount St John and Michael Eilberg collaboration continues to flourish, which was evident at Keysoe with Michael achieving outstanding results with several of the stud’s competition mares. Over the three days he achieved six tickets to the Nationals with four horses, each of them showing the talent which has become synonymous with the Mount St John name. Michael (31) dominated a highly competitive TopSpec Medium Gold taking the top two places with Atterupgaards 02 and Mount St John Valencia. Eight-year-old Atterupgaards 02 (pictured) was Michael’s winning ride with a score of 76.71%. Bred by embryo transfer from Fiona Bigwood’s Rio 2016 Olympic team silver partner, Atterupgaards Orthilia, and by prolific sire Belissimo M, the mare has inherited many qualities that her parentage would suggest. Previously ridden by Mount St John’s former head resident trainer Jayden Brown, who has since returned to Australia, Michael has taken up the reins for the next stage of 02’s education. In the Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold on day three, it was Mount St John Valencia’s turn at the top. Partnered by Michael she won the class on 73.29%, with Lara Butler and Amiek C second (71.49%) and Michael with Atterupgaards 02 third (69.52%). Eight-year-old Mount St John Valencia (Vivaldi x Ferragamo) is described by the Eilberg team as ‘rather special - such a talent and the loveliest horse to deal with’. Katrina Cantrell enjoyed a highly successful show too with an emphatic double victory. The 45-year-old from Ascot in Berkshire claimed both the Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold and the Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Gold with Christine Cantrell’s Woodlander Donna Summer. ‘Donna’ was expertly piloted by Katrina to achieve scores of 69.47% and 70% respectively. “Wow what a week!” she said on Facebook , “Donna and I have just come back from Keysoe regional champs gaining two new titles, PSG and Inter I Gold, securing our place at the National Champs! I am over the moon with Donna, I had two great rides and she coped so well with the atmosphere.” Young rider Alexzandra Houldcroft (22), from Wythall in the West Midlands, won the Backinaction Preliminary Silver regional title with her British-bred seven-year-old Cavallina Herself. Cavallina, who was bred by Alexzandra’s trainer Paul Friday, is by Cardinar and out of a Weltmeyer mare. “I’m absolutely buzzing to be writing this, we only went and won our Regional at Keysoe today on 70%!” she said on Facebook . “Cavallina felt much more established and we cannot wait to get to the National Championships!” Congratulations to all the qualified riders and regional champions. British Dressage thanks the team at Keysoe and all involved for a successful Regional Championships as well as the Nationals sponsors for their generous support. Regional champions: Backinaction Preliminary Silver Alexzandra Houldcroft with Cavallina Herself, 70.40% Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver Charlotte-Elizabeth Barber with CE Florisou, 75.00% Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold Michael Eilberg with MSJ Dante VX, 73.95% Childéric Saddles Elementary Silver William Roberts with Afortinius, 70.47% Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold Alex Hardwick with Polar Star III, 73.28% TopSpec Medium Silver Rebecca Lee-Wolf with Fire, 67.66% TopSpec Medium Gold Michael Eilberg with Atterupgaards 02, 76.71% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Jayne Turney with Cruz III, 72.15% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold Michael Eilberg with Mount St John Valencia, 73.29% Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold Katrina Cantrell with Woodlander Donna Summer, 69.47% Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Gold Katrina Cantrell with Woodlander Donna Summer, 70.00% For full results click here Photo © Kevin Sparrow
Tuesday, August 21

Summer Regional Chamionships: Keysoe

The final Regional Championships of the summer took place last week at Keysoe Equestrian in Bedfordshire (11 – 13 August 2018), settling the final qualifications for the LeMieux National Championships in September. The Mount St John and Michael Eilberg collaboration continues to flourish, which was evident at Keysoe with Michael achieving outstanding results with several of the stud’s competition mares. Over the three days he achieved six tickets to the Nationals with four horses, each of them showing the talent which has become synonymous with the Mount St John name. Michael (31) dominated a highly competitive TopSpec Medium Gold taking the top two places with Atterupgaards 02 and Mount St John Valencia. Eight-year-old Atterupgaards 02 (pictured) was Michael’s winning ride with a score of 76.71%. Bred by embryo transfer from Fiona Bigwood’s Rio 2016 Olympic team silver partner, Atterupgaards Orthilia, and by prolific sire Belissimo M, the mare has inherited many qualities that her parentage would suggest. Previously ridden by Mount St John’s former head resident trainer Jayden Brown, who has since returned to Australia, Michael has taken up the reins for the next stage of 02’s education. In the Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold on day three, it was Mount St John Valencia’s turn at the top. Partnered by Michael she won the class on 73.29%, with Lara Butler and Amiek C second (71.49%) and Michael with Atterupgaards 02 third (69.52%). Eight-year-old Mount St John Valencia (Vivaldi x Ferragamo) is described by the Eilberg team as ‘rather special - such a talent and the loveliest horse to deal with’. Katrina Cantrell enjoyed a highly successful show too with an emphatic double victory. The 45-year-old from Ascot in Berkshire claimed both the Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold and the Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Gold with Christine Cantrell’s Woodlander Donna Summer. ‘Donna’ was expertly piloted by Katrina to achieve scores of 69.47% and 70% respectively. “Wow what a week!” she said on Facebook , “Donna and I have just come back from Keysoe regional champs gaining two new titles, PSG and Inter I Gold, securing our place at the National Champs! I am over the moon with Donna, I had two great rides and she coped so well with the atmosphere.” Young rider Alexzandra Houldcroft (22), from Wythall in the West Midlands, won the Backinaction Preliminary Silver regional title with her British-bred seven-year-old Cavallina Herself. Cavallina, who was bred by Alexzandra’s trainer Paul Friday, is by Cardinar and out of a Weltmeyer mare. “I’m absolutely buzzing to be writing this, we only went and won our Regional at Keysoe today on 70%!” she said on Facebook . “Cavallina felt much more established and we cannot wait to get to the National Championships!” Congratulations to all the qualified riders and regional champions. British Dressage thanks the team at Keysoe and all involved for a successful Regional Championships as well as the Nationals sponsors for their generous support. Regional champions: Backinaction Preliminary Silver Alexzandra Houldcroft with Cavallina Herself, 70.40% Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver Charlotte-Elizabeth Barber with CE Florisou, 75.00% Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold Michael Eilberg with MSJ Dante VX, 73.95% Childéric Saddles Elementary Silver William Roberts with Afortinius, 70.47% Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold Alex Hardwick with Polar Star III, 73.28% TopSpec Medium Silver Rebecca Lee-Wolf with Fire, 67.66% TopSpec Medium Gold Michael Eilberg with Atterupgaards 02, 76.71% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Jayne Turney with Cruz III, 72.15% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold Michael Eilberg with Mount St John Valencia, 73.29% Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold Katrina Cantrell with Woodlander Donna Summer, 69.47% Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Gold Katrina Cantrell with Woodlander Donna Summer, 70.00% For full results click here Photo © Kevin Sparrow
Tuesday, August 21

LeMieux National Championships '18 wild cards

British Dressage can now announce the wild cards for this year’s LeMieux National Dressage Championships. Congratulations to all the riders, owners and horses concerned. PLEASE NOTE – The close of entries date for wild cards is Friday 24 August 2018. NO late entries will be accepted. All Championship packs have been sent out first class today to the RIDER who qualified the horse. Please contact the office immediately if you will not be attending the National Championships to enable your place to be passed down to the next eligible combination. Backinaction Preliminary Silver Katherine McGrail, Floreat Heartbeat, 71.78% Rosie Langbridge, Hawk Valley Morning Star, 70.46% Debbie Boylan-White, Linzgarth Royal Millenium, 70.00% Rachel Andrews, Gonzo, 69.94% Ruby Lewin, CNS Cob Marley, 69.89% Mairead McGrath, Proud Mairi, 69.83% Kate Vince, Damaskas, 69.77% Jennifer Rushmer, Carvella, 69.60% Helen Tegg, Pinto IV, 69.54% Rebecca Dawes, Ebony VI 69.43% Megan White, Don Nikita, 69.43% Col 212 Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver Nicola Pearce, Keystone Quartz, 70.37% Chloe Hill, Bonhard Alexander, 70.19% Lisa Clarkson, Giannova, 69.94% Karen Denness, Gues, 69.63% Bethany Edginton, Frankel, 69.44% Sarah Clack, Haybrook Welita, 69.26% Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold Darren Hicks, Diamond Cut 2, 73.09% Nicky Heale, Furstinclaire, 72.10% Nicola Buchanan, St Giles Bob Bon, 71.73% Michael Eilberg, MSJ Furstin Diaz, 71.73% Jezz Palmer, Swanmore Wynter, 71.48% Antonia Brown, SJL Baks Zacco, 71.42% Nicola Naylor, Felix, 71.23% Elizabeth Allen, Heraldik, 70.86% Jessica Thompson, A.D.Destination, 70.68% Childéric Saddles Elementary Silver Robert Barker, Fidelious, 76.51% Clair Johnston, Sensation, 74.01% Fiona Newall, Fendy VCG, 73.85% Jenny Ainscough, Showstar, 73.33% Lucy Robinson, Private Dancer, 73.02% Louise Crutcher, Tantoni Fiametta, 72.34% Abigail Doherty, Granada V, 72.14% Hazel McCorriston, Blue Hors Zagato, 71.82% Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold Jessica Dunn, KD Flying Dream, 72.08% Jessica Dunn, Helga, 70.73% Sarah Williams, San Remo Hitt, 70.36% Jo Stoyell, Movinight, 69.95% Jo Barry, Hidalgo II, 69.69% Melissa Chapman, DHI Hinke, 69.69% Nicola Naylor, Felix, 69.53% Anya Kolleth, Frings 2, 69.38% Col 169 TopSpec Medium Silver Emma Littlewood, Expo, 69.46% Robert Barker, Woodlander Romance, 69.10% Annabella Pidgley, Cognac IX, 68.87% Tyler Bradshaw, Gijsbert, 68.78% Katherine Lewes, Albertho B, 68.69% Brendan Tegg, Foxcourt A Maddonna, 68.51% Camilla James, Dianti, 68.51% Isobel Goodwin, Gameboys Welcome, 68.06% Caroline Hunt, Maverick Mat, 68.02% TopSpec Medium Gold Maya Goldberg, Half Moon Delphi 2, 72.30% Ruth Edge, PSH Twilight, 72.25% Phoebe Peters, Classic Flamboyant, 71.31% Megan Barrat, Valido's Starlight, 69.91% Sophie Taylor, Le Chiffre, 69.82% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Taylor Denness, Amaro O, 69.17% Lucy Baker, Voolra, 69.12% Holly Colgate-Hardaway, Dalvangs Lorenzo, 68.99% Kirsty Imm, Don-Davidoff Cl, 68.95% Scott McLellan, Lemiroff LS, 68.64% Linda Prescott- Clements, Menelaos, 68.38% Jane Howard, Bjorsun 68.38% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold No spaces currently Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold To be announced Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Gold To be announced Cavalor Intermediate II Gold To be announced Grand Prix Gold To be announced
Monday, August 20

BD Vacancy: Pony Selector

British Dressage is the National Governing Body of the sport of dressage in the UK and is responsible for the development of riders to represent Great Britain at all levels in FEI competitions, including our Under 21 International Teams. This is an exciting time to join British Dressage and the sport is enjoying a public profile like never before, with over 17,000 members taking part in 2,500 days of affiliated dressage competition every year. The Pony Selector is a voluntary role, which requires excellent current knowledge and experience of international dressage and rules, a good understanding of elite sport and high performance systems, including the World Class Programmes, as well as an appreciation of the role / responsibilities of key organisations such as UK Sport, FEI, BEF and BD. This role requires proven technical expertise, along with the willingness to learn, who can attend Viewing Days, Prime or Progress Squad sessions (when required), nominated Premier League and National competitions, as well as International competitions at home and abroad. In addition, you would be required to attend the pre-European Championships support team meetings, the Pony European Championships and two U21 International Team meetings per annum. You will set and maintain the standard of Team GBR and BD values of fairness, integrity, good sportsmanship and mutual respect under the pressure of competition, championing the team first ethos in the pursuit of excellence. The ability to conduct your duties impartially and objectively, in accordance with the agreed policies and procedures, acting with sensitivity, tact and diplomacy at all times, is an essential part of the role. You will be a confident communicator with excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to respond promptly to communications from colleagues and other stakeholders. Some weekend / evening work and international travel is integral to the role and you will be familiar with using Microsoft Word, Excel and Outlook as relevant. For more information please see www.britishdressage.co.uk for a copy of the Job Description. To apply, please send a covering letter outlining your suitability for the role and a copy of your CV by email to Angela Green: angela.green@britishdressage.co.uk . Voluntary role: Expenses only, under the BD Selectors Expenses Policy Closing date: 14 September 2018 Interview date: w/c 24 September 2018
Friday, August 17

Freestyle GOLD for Fry

On the final day of competition at the 2018 U25s European Championships, held at the Hippisch Centrum Exloo, history was made by the invincible Charlotte Fry and her superstar dancing partner Dark Legend (13 – 17 August). Rising star Charlotte has had a phenomenal month in which her talent and dedication has seen her enjoy results to dream of. With her own and Anne Van Olst’s 10-year-old gelding Dark Legend, an energetic freestyle brought her another FEI Championship medal, this time a historic gold. The score for the duo was 82.14%, which left them an astonishing three percent in front of Germany’s Jill-Marielle Becks who’s performances throughout the week with Christian and Melanie Becks’ Damon’s Satellite have impressed the panel of judges and spectators alike. The two riders have been locked in battle at this event, each winning a test before today but Charlotte and Dark Legend capitalized on their late draw to blow the competition away. Their test saw them earn no less than 17 nines from the judges panel consisting of Francisco Guerra Diaz (ESP), Peter Storr (GBR), Francis Verbeek-van Rooy (NED), Magnus Ringmark (SWE) and Susanne Baarup (DEN). The five judges ranked her unanimously in first place. A maximum number of three British riders came forward to contest the Grand Prix Freestyle to Music, with Ryan Todd and Rebecca Edwards also enjoying an exciting final test. Rebecca Edwards and Sarah Oppenheimer’s experienced Dimaggio sired gelding Headmore Delegate set the standard at the start of the class scoring 70.77%. Becky and ‘Del’ earned their highest placing of the week in this class, finishing in an eventual 15th place. Ryan Todd and his mother Julie’s Charlex Eskebjerg also produced a brilliant test to score 70.79% in their second U25s Championship together. Ryan and Charlie placed 14th to finish their time in the under 25s category in style. Congratulations to all four riders on a history-making week from all at British Dressage. Thanks go to Equestrian Team GBR, Musto and FalPro for their support of the under 25s team. Results Freestyle to Music 1st Charlotte Fry with Dark Legend, 82.14% (GBR) 14th Ryan Todd with Charlex Eskbjerg, 70.79% (GBR) 15th Rebecca Edwards with Headmore Delegate, 70.77% (GBR) For full results, click here.
Friday, August 17

Great Britain's dressage team for WEG announced

The British Equestrian Federation (BEF) has today confirmed the dressage team, selected by the British Dressage selection panel, for this year’s World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina (USA), 11-23 September 2018. The athletes selected are (in alphabetical order); Charlotte Dujardin CBE from Gloucestershire, with the Mount St John Stud’s Mount St John Freestyle Emile Faurie from Oxfordshire, with Hof Kasselmann KG’s Dono Di Maggio Carl Hester MBE from Gloucestershire, with Lady Anne Evans, Ann Cory and his own Hawtins Delicato Spencer Wilton from Reading, with Jen Goodman and his own Super Nova II The selected reserves have been confirmed as; Emile Faurie with Elena Knyaginicheva’s Delatio, as a direct reserve for Dono Di Maggio Lara Butler from Gloucestershire, with Dr Wilfried and Mrs Ursula Bechtolsheimer’s Rubin Al Asad Dressage Performance Manager, Caroline Griffith comments; “It’s very exciting to be working with a team of riders that have such a wealth of experience between them and I know that they will use that experience to best effect. We have seen some great scores this year from those on the short list, which, for me, underlines the strength of the four athletes and horses that will be travelling to Tryon. “If anyone can prepare this high calibre group of young horses for a World Equestrian Games, we know Carl, Charlotte, and Emile can. Add to that Spencer and we have capacity for some truly exciting team scores and a great competition.” Chief Executive of British Dressage, Jason Brautigam adds; “We’re exceptionally lucky to be in a position to field four riders with Olympic experience in Carl, Charlotte, Emile and Spencer. In our team for WEG we have three exciting young horses making their Championship debut, alongside a fourth making his third consecutive team appearance. They have all been carefully campaigned through the year to peak for Tryon - and with the team’s vast experience of preparing for the big occasion; confidence in the camp is high. We are looking forward to seeing these combinations in action and wish them all the very best in the USA.” Commenting on their selection; Charlotte Dujardin: “I'm delighted and really excited to be going. Tryon was my aim for this year and I'm excited to be heading there with her [Mount St John Freestyle]; she is still only nine and inexperienced, but I feel really lucky, the sort of atmosphere she is going to experience there I know she can handle, she's fantastic in that sort of environment. I think it's going to be an amazing experience.” Emile Faurie: “It was exciting to receive the call for the team and I can’t wait to head out there and take in what is sure to be an amazing atmosphere. We’ve got a really strong team this year with everyone scoring over 74%. Dono is an exceptional horse and he’s probably one of the best horses I’ve had at a championship.” Carl Hester: “It’s an unusual situation because both of us [Carl and Charlotte] are taking out new horses, but I think they are very exciting, it will be an exciting championships. My passion is producing new horses so it is very satisfying when you get them to this level. From a team point of view, it’s a very experienced team, with four riders who have all competed at an Olympics. I am really looking forward to getting out there.” Spencer Wilton: “I’m so happy for Jen; she has invested a lot of time and money and this really means a lot to us. We had a tricky start to the season with injuries but we’ve come back and performed well and Neville [Super Nova II] feels amazing. I’m very optimistic about this year and the team we have. Carl, Charlotte and Emile have all got bags of championship experience and I’ve got a couple of championships under my belt, and I think we could really impress people in Tryon.” Equestrian Team GBR is supported by the UK Sport National Lottery funded World Class Programme; the British teams are very grateful to the support they receive from the British Equestrian Federation Fund and official partners Dodson and Horrell, Equi-Trek, FALPRO England, Musto, NAF and Point Two.
Wednesday, August 15

Summer Regional Championships: Bury Farm

During the tail end of the heatwave, the odd light shower may have cooled things a little for the second half of Bury Farm’s Regional Championships (6 – 9 August 2018), but not the dressage which remained a highly competitive affair throughout all four days. One hard fought class was the Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold where two talented young horses came within a whisker of each other – Glasgow MH (pictured) ridden by World Class Podium Potential rider Alex Hardwick and Donner HD ridden by Simone Ward. Both combinations breached 74% but it was Alex and Glasgow who had the edge. Owned by Alex’s mother, Sally Hardwick, the compact chestnut who’s known at home as ‘Buddy’ and is also dubbed ‘the little red rocket’, earned 74.506% from judges Debbie Wardle, Pat Watts and Christian Landolt much to the delight of his rider. “The little red rocket only went and won the Novice Gold!” she said, via Facebook . “Buddy (Glasgow) was a complete star and gave his all. Big big thank you to Mumma for allowing me to have the ride on him. I might just have to hold on to him for a little while longer - at least for the Nationals! Massive well done to everyone competing today. Boy it was a hot one!” Glasgow MH is a seven-year-old Dutch-bred son of Uphill with a tidy competition record to date. Here at Bury Farm, he also achieved second place in the Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold securing a second opportunity at the Nationals next month. The Childéric Saddles Elementary Silver regional title went to equine vet Gemma Carman with her British bred Ekko Falkenfurst - an eight-year-old son of Faberge 50 out of Rebecca Bates’ former Junior and Young Rider horse, Bungee. Gemma (29), who lives a stone’s through from Stoneleigh Park where the LeMieux National Championships takes centre stage next month, fits her riding in around work at equine veterinary practice, Spring Paddocks Equine in Bishop’s Itchington. In fabulous form, the pair also placed second in the Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver resulting in two tickets to the Nationals. “It’s a win and another golden ticket for Gem Carman & Ekko Falkenfurst!” said Rebecca and Keri Bates on Ekko Equestrian Facebook . “They absolutely smashed it and won the Elementary Silver today at Bury Farm Regionals! “We’re so proud to train this pair and to have bred and produced ‘Mylo’. Mylo was purchased by the Carman family four years ago and what an incredible journey they have had over the years. This will be the second time they are heading to Nationals. We are so proud that Ekko horses are making the headlines, that's five different Ekko horses at nationals every year since 2015.” World Equestrian Games team silver medallist Gareth Hughes will return to the Nationals this year with Sintano Van Hof Olympia, the Sandro Hit x Silvano eight-year-old who he owns with Judy Firmston-Williams. In front of judges Wendy Filtness, Sophie Dickinson and Fiona Wilson, the pair took the Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold with 73.947% ahead of Jayne Turney and Penhaligon’s Jupiter in second. Congratulations to all the qualified riders and regional champions. British Dressage thanks the team at Bury Farm Equestrian and all involved for a successful Regional Championships, and the Nationals sponsors for their generous support. Regional champions : Backinaction Preliminary Silver Laura Green with Ireldo L, 71.264% Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver Trisha Polson with Crime Suspect, 70.988% Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold Alex Hardwick with Glasgow MH, 74.506% Childéric Saddles Elementary Silver Gemma Carman with Ekko Falkenfurst, 71.615% Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold Ashley Jenkins with His Highness, 73.698% TopSpec Medium Silver Maria Pook with So Enamoured, 71.577% TopSpec Medium Gold Abi Hutton with Suspension Giraldo, 72.568% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Kirsty Imm with Barnebie, 70.395% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold Gareth Hughes with Sintano Van Hof Olympia, 73.947% Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Nicola Mahoney with Dream Of Joy, 70.00 Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Gold Nikki Barker with Durable, 71.754% For full results click here .
Tuesday, August 14

New Chairman for Wales Region

British Dressage is delighted to announce the appointment of a new Chairman for the Welsh region. The current Chairman, Steve Arnett, completes his eight year tenure at the end of the year and will hand the leadership of the region to Mike Mullis (pictured) on 1 January 2019. An ex Regular Army Officer and Police Chief Inspector, Mike learnt to ride in his time with the Army as he took up Modern Penthalon, representing Great Britain at the World Championships in 1973. He developed a love for dressage and has been a member of BD for over 15 years. He shares his passion for riding with his wife and they have five horses together ranging in age from two to 23. Following a spell with the Criminal Justice System in Wales where he worked with various organisations to ‘achieve more with less’, he now works in the family business. This affords him the time and opportunity to compete including reaching Petplan Equine Area Festivals, the Veteran Horse and Forces Equine Championships, which he describes as “my Olympics”. Mike has been actively involved with the Army Cadet Force for over three decades and is also currently President of the Cadet Force Commissions Board. On his appointment Mike commented; "I’m honoured to be appointed to this position, and am looking forward to what will face me. My 35+ years in the Cadet Force gives me a lot of experience of operating in a voluntary organisation at all levels, and the importance of working with the members who make up the organisation. I’m looking forward to the challenges of being Chair of BD Wales and getting to meet members, venue owners as well as others who can help us to continue to improve Dressage in Wales for our members at all levels. "I believe that my career, hobbies and sporting success, will help me understand the ambitions of the members, allow me to help where I can to allow others to achieve their dreams and to do all I can to make the sport fun and enjoyable for all involved as well as those who have not tried our sport." He concluded; “As I have gone around to various competitions, I have come to understand the passion we all have about horses and dressage, and it amazes me still how people can get their horses to do amazing things. I look forward to playing my part over the coming years to help all members in Wales and beyond to achieve their equine aims within the scope of my abilities as Chair of BD Wales." Recruitment for the position has been done to give a five month handover period where Mike will shadow Steve in the role so he is well prepared to take the role on full time. Vanessa Archer, Regional Development Officer for Wales said; “It’s with much sadness that we wave good bye to Steve as he’s done so much for the Region. He’s been very ‘hands on’ and really made a difference to growing dressage in Wales and I’ll miss his support. However, the regional committee and I are very much looking forward to welcoming Mike and working closely with him to carry on the forward moment with his extensive skillset. I want to thank Steve for his dedication and I’m certain he’ll continue to be involved in some way and I’m very excited for the future under Mike’s direction.”
Tuesday, August 14

Pony European Championships 2018

After eight years travelling around the continent, the prestigious FEI Pony European Championships returned to British soil last week. Five days of fierce competition took place at the fantastic East Yorkshire venue, Bishop Burton College, with Team NAF putting in experience gaining performances and earning some strong results across the board. Germany dominate team standings The team competition was won once again by a consistent German team, who soared to victory despite a challenging ride for their anchorwoman, former twice European Pony Champion Lucie-Anouk Baumgurtel. Denmark travel home with a team Silver medal, whilst an enthusiastic squad from Holland capitalized on their time in the arena to earn the Bronze. It was fourth place for Team NAF, consisting of Sophie Taylor, Annabella Pidgley, Isobel Lickley and Megan Barratt, after four great tests at the start of the competition. 16-year-old Megan and her mother Sue’s Valido’s Starlight (Valido x Capri Moon) acted as pathfinders for Great Britain; their solid test gained 69.71% from the panel of judges made up of Carlos Lopes (POR), Elke Ebert (GER), Jacques Van Daele (BEL), Isobel Wessels (GB) and Yuri Romanov (RUS). A couple of small mistakes just kept the score from hitting the high notes but the experienced pair showed some quality work throughout that helped them to produce a team bronze medal performance in Kaposvar’s Championships this time last year. Staffordshire-based rider Isobel Lickley returned to Team NAF following her debut appearance in 2016. Her partner this time was the half-sister of Valido’s Starlight, Rob and Nicky Lickley’s Valido’s Sunshine. Isobel and the charming 15-year-old mare impressed to score 70.37%, a mark that combined with team-mate Megan’s left Team NAF in a handy fourth place before the second day of competition. Team NAF debutant Annabella Pidgley pulled out the stops with her mother Sarah’s stunning mare Ine. Their strong partnership was evident in their work which resulted in a brilliant test worthy of 71.25%. Looking towards next year, the future looks bright for this combination who notched up several eights throughout their round for work in collected trot, collected canter and the simple changes. Anchor rider Sophie Taylor brought a new ride to this year’s Championships, her final appearance as a Pony rider, in the form of the talented seven-year-old George Clooney BS. Sophie and George had a lot to do to put Britain on the podium but they didn’t let the pressure affect them and showed some high quality work to earn Britain’s highest team test score, 71.31%. The British-bred pony has been produced by Sophie over a number of years, so this was without doubt a very proud moment for the Lancashire-based young lady. Doing it for the boys This year’s Individual competition was dominated by Moritz Treffinger of Germany and his dancing partner Top Queen H (Top Anthony II x Dark Rubin). The duo set the standard in the team test and carried their momentum through to their second test; a score of 77.18% was good enough to earn them the top honours. Alexander Yde Helgstrand and Adriano B took the runner up spot for Denmark by less than half a mark over Germany’s Yana Lang with the experienced campaigner NK Cyrill. Sophie Taylor and George Clooney BS earned the highest accolades for Team NAF in the challenging individual test. Their performance earned 20th spot with a creditable 69.40%. Annabella Pidgley and Isobel Lickley encountered a couple of blips amongst some otherwise superb work. It was an eventual 26th and 27th place for the two young riders who earned 68.48% and 68.45% respectably. For Megan Barratt and Valido’s Starlight, a tough time inside the white boards resulted in 62.73% and 49th place. We all know that horses aren’t machines, well done to all of our riders for a stellar effort! Treffinger takes the hat-trick The Freestyle to Music final was not short of excitement and the judges were treated to 18 high standard performances to conclude the week. Germany’s Moritz Treffinger added a third gold medal to his collection after scoring a win in the Freestyle, 81.87% was the reward for his near-perfect performance. Young Dane Alexander Yde Helgstrand showed his pedigree once again to take home his third silver medal of the Championships, whilst the in-form combination of Julia Barbian and Der Kleine Konig found their rhythm on the final day of action to bag themselves a bronze. For Sophie Taylor, our sole representative in the freestyle test, it was a score of 72.04% and 14th place. Speaking about her young star George Clooney BS on Facebook Sophie said, “A great end to the Pony Europeans with George through to the Freestyle. [He was] such a super star form start to finish and has been very mature for such a young pony. There’s a lot more to come! Thank you to everyone involved.” Onwards and upwards Congratulations to all four of our riders for their results. Thanks go to NAF, LeMieux and Land Rover for their support of our Under 21s international teams, as well as to all those behind the scenes at the Championship who contributed to the riders’ success. British Dressage looks forward to another busy summer of FEI Championships in 2019. With viewing days for Ponies, Juniors, Young Riders and Children on Horses taking place next month, there’s plenty of opportunity for the next group of talented jockeys to start their campaign in style. If you’re interested in find out more about how to get involved with international competition, click here. Results Team 1st Moritz Treffinger with Top Queen H, 77.42% (GER) 12th Sophie Taylor with George Clooney BS, 71.31% (GBR) =13th Annabella Pidgley with Ine, 71.25% (GBR) =17th Isobel Lickley with Valido’s Sunshine, 70.37% (GBR) 21st Megan Barratt with Valido’s Starlight, 69.71% (GBR) Team standings 1st Germany, 226.286 2nd Denmark, 219.028 3rd Netherlands, 218.715 4th Great Britain, 212.94 Individual 1st Moritz Treffinger with Top Queen H, 77.18% (GER) 20th Sophie Taylor with George Clooney BS, 69.40% (GBR) 26th Annabella Pidgley with Ine, 68.48% (GBR) 27th Isobel Lickley with Valido’s Sunshine, 68.455 (GBR) 49th Megan barratt with Valido’s Starlight, 62.73% (GBR) Freestyle to Music 1st Moritz Treffinger with Top Queen H, 81.87% (GER) 14th Sophie Taylor with George Clooney BS, 72.05% (GBR) For full results click here. To view photos and videos from the event click here. Photo top right: Kevin Sparrow Photos below: Helen Revington Megan Barratt and Valido's Starlight Isobel Lickley and Valido's Sunshine Annabella Pidgley and Ine Sophie Taylor and George Clooney BS    
Monday, August 13

Butler shines bright in Cappeln

Lara Butler and Rubin Al Asad have returned home having achieved excellent results at Cappeln CDI4* in Germany last week (9 – 12 August 2018). The pair (pictured) produced an assured performance in their Grand Prix test on Friday to take second place behind none other than German world number one Isabell Werth with the Belissimo M daughter, Bella Rose - the superstar mare who has recently returned to competition following a four-year injury break. Isabell (49), who holds the record for the most Olympic medals won by any equestrian athlete, rode a brilliant test for 79.50%. Lara meanwhile - 20 years Isabell’s junior - rode with great style and accomplishment to earn a score of 71.32% for second, once again reinforcing what a bright hope she is for the future. On Saturday it was time for the Freestyle, and Lara and ‘Rufus’, riding to their tried and tested upbeat Scottish-themed composition, were awarded with a score of 76.50% to again take a well-earned second spot on the podium. The competitor to take third in both classes was the Netherlands’ Marlies van Baalen with the Johnson x Ferro gelding, Ben Johnson. Lara, who works as stable rider for Laura Tomlinson and Laura’s parents Wilfried and Ursula Bechtolsheimer in Gloucestershire, has partnered the handsome Rubin Al Asad (Rubin Royal x Wanderbursch II) since he was 10 year-old. Now 16, he’s developed into one of the most successful Grand Prix horses in the UK under the tutelage of Lara and the Bechtolsheimer family. This year, the pair have enjoyed further success still, with a Grand Prix Special victory at Rotterdam in June and exciting results last month in Aachen. Results of the British rider: CDI4* Grand Prix (qualifier for Freestyle) 1st Isabell Werth with Bella Rose, 79.500% (GER) 2nd Lara Butler with Rubin Al Asad, 71.326% (GBR) Grand Prix Freestyle 1st Isabell Werth with Bella Rose, 87.000% (GER) 2nd Lara Butler with Rubin Al Asad, 76.500% (GBR) For full results click here
Friday, August 10

BD looks at dressage with 20:20 vision

Join us at Hartpury College in Gloucestershire 24 – 25 November as we celebrate our 20th anniversary with 2018’s British Dressage National Convention supported by Harrison Clark Rickerbys. This year, we’ll be looking at dressage with ‘20:20 vision’, from the viewpoint of a panel of leading experts including elite riders and trainers Emile Faurie, Gareth Hughes, Sophie Wells plus FEI 4* Judge Peter Storr and Dr Rachel Murray, Senior Orthopaedic Advisor at the Animal Health Trust. The term 20:20 vision is used to indicate perfect sight, which is what dressage riders, coaches and judges spend their careers striving for, in their attempt to achieve total harmony between horse and rider. The perfect ten, achieved through excellence, clarity, flawlessness… That’s always the focus but a number of different factors are involved in making it happen: Rider: our own skill, our ability to train and realise potential and our aptitude to constantly evolve and learn in any given situation. Coach : the talent for imparting knowledge with great clarity, reading a situation and capability of bringing the best out of both horse and rider. Judge : seeing the complete picture, the knack of providing feedback in the right tone to encourage and providing riders with a fair measure of their training progress. Support: veterinary, physiotherapy, nutrition, medical, psychology all have a key part to play. Getting the best from horse and rider in modern times is all about taking a holistic approach for an all-round ‘team’ effort. It’s not just a rider in an arena; it’s a series of processes, a systematic methodology and a great deal of time. We’ll take you on a journey through the career path of both horse and rider as they start at Novice before moving up the levels towards the ultimate aim, Grand Prix. With the year 2020 on the horizon, hear the inside track from three top riders on their plans for producing their top horses to peak for Tokyo and the associated challenges, alongside tips, advice and knowledge for anyone involved in dressage. To celebrate 20 years, our present to you is a new early-bird ticket rate on weekend and daily tickets available now until Sunday 23 September. All tickets are just £72 for a weekend pass or £45 to join us on one of the days. After this, prices rise with rates for BD members, BHS members and non-members. Also, we’re offering tickets at this rate for anyone under 25 throughout the booking process. You can book online via the BD online shop at www.britishdressage.co.uk or over the phone by calling 02476 698833/831. Please note that under 25 tickets must be booked by phone to verify age.   BD Training Director Paul Hayler commented; “We had to mark our 20th anniversary in some fashion and I’m proud to be able to bring five of Britain’s leading minds to one great weekend to give an all-round analysis of dressage. All of our presenters will bring their own style and beliefs to the sessions and these five will certainly get you thinking, whatever your role in dressage. Our new early bird offer gives you the chance to save 10% on ticket prices which is excellent news – but act quickly, as you only have until the Sunday of the Nationals to take advantage. We look forward to welcoming you to Hartpury for what promises to be a fantastic weekend.” Provisional timetable: Saturday 24 November 10:00 Welcome and Introduction Paul Hayler, BD Training Director 10:00 -12:45 Building blocks - Novice to Small Tour Expectations, turning potential to success and managing horse and rider. Emile Faurie, Peter Storr and Rachel Murray 14:15 Para production Discovering the ability in riders with a disability and producing medal winning combinations. Sophie Wells, Peter Storr and Rachel Murray 14:45 Inter inspiration Increasing the intensity, looking towards international ambition and the increased demands on combinations. Gareth Hughes, Peter Storr and Rachel Murray 15:15 GP goals The evolution of the sport’s elite level, developing the equine athlete and the challenges of management for peak performances. Emile Faurie, Gareth Hughes, Peter Storr and Rachel Murray 16:15 Closing comments Questions, highlights and learnings from the day. Paul Hayler, Emile Faurie, Gareth Hughes, Peter Storr and Rachel Murray   Sunday 25 November 10:00 – 12:45 Performing precisely Novice to Small Tour Test riding from the view of the rider, coach and judge. Emile Faurie, Peter Storr and Rachel Murray 14:30 Inter intent Test riding, bridging the gap to Grand Prix and management of the elite quine athlete. Gareth Hughes, Peter Storr and Rachel Murray 15:15 Freestyle formula Evolution of the GP freestyle to dancing horse status, preparing a medal winning floorplan and balancing technical and artistic to wow the judges. Emile Faurie, Gareth Hughes, Peter Storr and Rachel Murray 16:15 Closing comments Questions, highlights and learnings from the day. Paul Hayler, Emile Faurie, Gareth Hughes, Peter Storr and Rachel Murray  
Friday, August 10

UKCC update from BD

The UK Coaching Certificate (UKCC) has been at the heart of equestrian qualifications for the past 15 years and has proved hugely successful for the coaches involved and in turn their pupils. The UKCC is an endorsement, provided by UK Coaching, of a sport’s own externally awarded qualifications used to ensure the levels and standards of coaches across sports conform to common levels. Sport England and UK Coaching recently conducted a routine review on the coaching pathway, which is used by many different sports, and as a result have indicated that may be some changes and improvements introduced from September 2020. British Dressage has this year completed an extensive refresh to the coaching qualifications, with a new partnership with 1st4sport providing the framework for the latest UKCC qualifications. In addition, the Coaching Development Action Team (CDAT), which British Dressage is a very active member of, has commissioned research into how we can build upon the important foundations that UKCC provides, by introducing specific bolt-on courses for our senior, youth and para programmes. BD remains totally committed to further progressing these training and education pathways, which will continue to have the Coaching Certificates at its core as a valuable coach development tool. We will shortly be looking to expand our coaching workforce to help us to meet the demand for the UKCC, which is greater than ever, and are currently developing additional CPD opportunities for our BD coaches to complement the excellent grounding that the Coaching Certificates provide. While we do anticipate some changes to UKCC over the next two years, this will not affect the validity of the qualification, which is externally regulated in its own right. Through CDAT, we are already working closely with the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sports and Physical Activity (CIMSPA) on any input into the development of the future of the professional standards and qualification. These future changes will not impact on any current UKCC qualifications, or those gained in the coming years, and they will remain an essential part of our coaching pathway. The current levels of 1 to 4 will continue to be offered and recognised through the industry in the UK and internationally for discipline competition coaches through the International Group for Equestrian Qualifications (IGEQ) passport. BD Training Director Paul Hayler commented; “The UKCC has grown and developed over the last decade, but it’s now time to be thinking ahead to the future and to see what improvements can be made. I would like to reassure all of our UKCC coaches, both current certificate holders and those studying, that this qualification will continue to be recognised and valued within the industry – there is no question of that. Have come so far with UKCC, we are now working with the other BEF member bodies to build on these strong and well-established foundations. Any changes will reflect modern practices, thinking and techniques which will only benefit the standards of horsemanship and riding in the sport.”
Friday, August 10

SW team celebrates at BD Youth Home International

Local team the South West Donald Ducks won the team championship at the BD Youth Home International, kindly supported by Protexin and held at Moreton Equestrian Centre near Dorchester in Dorset (3 – 5 August 2018). The three-day tournament was enjoyed by all. Fun was had, friends were made, but above all it was brimming with good quality riding and combinations showing much promise for the future. The annual event gives young riders an invaluable taste of the big time and all that comes with riding for a team. This year was no exception. A total of 25 teams came forward from across each of the eight BD regions in England, Scotland and Wales, plus teams invited from across the water in Ireland. There were also individual titles from Novice to Medium and FEI tests for the taking. Over the scorching weekend, the winning South West Donald Ducks team (pictured with South West's BD Youth Rep, Jo Lees) showed their mettle with some super scores achieved. They earned a total team score of 18.00 for a clear lead. Podium silver was taken by a team from the Northern region – Northern Skittles on a score of 33.00 with bronze going to North West’s NW Chatters (34.00). The winning four was spearheaded by 16-year-old Florence Human from Mark in Somerset and her dark bay seven-year-old Fulgencio (Fürstenball x Don Bedo I) competing at Elementary. On Saturday, the pair delivered the test of their career so far for a personal best of 74.38% followed by 71.57% on Sunday. The resulting score average of 72.97% not only made them the lynchpin of team but also earned them the overall individual Elementary title. Youngest team member, Caitlin Clancy (15), impressed with her eight-year-old Welsh pony, Browbank Jacob Black. Caitlin, who lives in Somerset, headed Saturday’s Novice with 70.77% and following Sunday’s competition settled into second overall in the individual Novice with a score average of 69.82%. April Joynson (18) from Charfield in Gloucestershire played a pivotal role in the winning South West team with her mother Karen’s British-bred skewbald pony Bryntegllwynau Rocky Robin. She summed up her experience on April Joynson Dressage . “We are Home International team champions!” she said. “We’ve had the most amazing weekend at the British Dressage home international, coming home with team first, by 15 points, and ninth individually in the very big Elementary class of 35 top competitors. “The South West riders were all on form, and showed great team spirit throughout the weekend, cheering everyone on through the highs and lows of the competition. A huge thank you to everyone who made it possible for Robin and me to compete. And to all of my great sponsors, as well as the sponsors of the event.” Team mate Danielle Balsdon (19) who hails from Exeter also achieved good results, with her eight-year-old son of L’Espoir, Lord Lennox. “I’m over the moon with how Lennox performed today. He was just lacking in energy come the end of his test, but with scores ranging from 9s to a 5.5 at a big championship, I cannot complain! We managed to come back fighting after yesterday to come sixth overall in the Medium championship but our SW England team won the gold! Thank you to everyone for the support and for such a great weekend being one I will never forget!” Southern region’s Joanna Kelly, who’d travelled from Dorking in Surrey with her nine-year-old German gelding Verdener Jung, was delighted with her Home International experience. Riding as part of the eighth-placed Southern Saffron team, the 22-year-old also took the overall individual Novice title with a score average of 70.26%. Joanna and ‘Tino’ competed at the 2017 LeMieux National Championships in the Backinaction Preliminary so are no strangers to the big time. “OMG! Tino and I are Home International Champions!” she exclaimed. “To be selected to compete was incredible but to actually go and win it was just amazing! Thank you everyone who has helped us, I couldn’t have done it without you all!” The individual Medium title belonged to Rachel Lade (23) from Stroud in Gloucestershire with her beautiful grey Royal Diamond son, Royal Diamont. Rachel and the German-bred nine-year-old who’s known as ‘Shimmer’ posted a score average of 69.97%. Team results 1st - South West Donald Ducks – 18 points April Joynson with Bryntegllwynau Rocky Robin (Elem) Danielle Balsdon with Lord Lennox (Med) Florence Human with Fulgencio (Elem) Caitlin Clancy with Browbank Jacob Black (Nov) 2nd - Northern Skittles – 33 points Anna Bates with Jolianna (Med) Mollie Whitham with DZL Royal Sunrise (Elem) Olivia Walker with QEG Lux (Nov) 3rd - North West Chatters – 34 points Chloe Naylor with Karisma (Med) Chloe Taylor with Treliver Divine (Elem) Danielle Marshall| with Galant IV (Nov) Holly Clarke with Gingerbread IV (Nov) Overall individual winners: Novice - Joanna Kelly with Verdener Jung (Southern), 70.26% Elementary – Florence Human with Fulgencio (South West), 72.97% Medium – Rachel Lade with Royal Diamont (South West), 69.97% FEI Test winners: Pony Individual - Lavinia Johnson with Dublin, 68.97% Junior Individual - Avery Maude with Double Agent, 68.06% Young Rider - Thalia Turner with Don Diamont, 58.90% Children on Horses - Phoebe Turnbull with Nairobi Star, 67.18% For full results click here BD Youth is open to every young person under the age of 25 who would like to be involved in regional training, competitions and camps. It is also a great way to meet new friends and learn more about the sport. To find out more visit www.britishdressage.co.uk/under_25s
Friday, August 10

Summer Regional Championships: Mount Ballan

The Summer Regional Championships at Mount Ballan Manor in Monmouthshire (3 - 5 August 2018) was full of excitement and fierce competition which kept everyone on the edge of their seat. The highest score of the show was awarded to Lucy Cartwright riding Frederico (pictured), a five-year-old Franziskus-sired bay gelding owned by Justin Wessels. Lucy and Frederico scored 72.04% in the Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold after a superb performance by the pair. Lucy was very busy throughout the show and rode four horses in the Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold, Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold, TopSpec Medium Gold and Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold, putting up a good mark in each of her tests. Lucy also recently married her fiancé Daniel Bremner, so congratulations! Debra Fews and her own British bred eight-year-old Fabizio scored the highest in the Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver with a score of 71.48% to take top place on the podium. In the Fairfax Saddles Prix St. Georges Gold, only 0.83% split first and second in a well fought battle. Serena Pincus clinched first place riding Sheepcote Corelator who is a home bred gelding by Contendro I and is owned by her husband, David Pincus. Serena is based in Bartestree, Herefordshire, with David and they run Sheepcote Equestrian, where they train both horses and riders from Novice to Grand Prix level. The winner of the TopSpec Medium Silver was Jane Morris with Quinet du Buisson Z. Quinet du Buisson Z is a Dutch bred nine-year-old gelding and is owned by Jane herself. The pair impressed judges Sue Petty (E), Andrea Smith (C) and Carole Thornton (M) which led them to score 69.82% and claim first place. Melanie Phillips and her nine-year-old Showmaker daughter, Ruxton Showgirl, scored the highest in the TopSpec Medium Gold with a score of 70.27%. Melanie is based in the Wye Valley with her husband Julian at River View Livery where she breeds and produces young competition horses. Congratulations to all the qualified riders and regional champions. British Dressage thanks the team at Mount Ballan and all involved for a successful Regional Championships, and the National sponsors for their generous support. Regional Champions: Backinaction Preliminary Silver 1st Ellen Glover with Alamo II, 71.61% Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver Debra Fews with Fabizio, 71.48% Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold Lucy Cartwright with Frederico, 72.04% ChildéricSaddles Elementary Silver Robert Barker with Woodlander Romance, 70.26% ChildéricSaddles Elementary Gold Sonar Murray Brown with Hamlet, 70.68% TopSpec Medium Silver Jane Morris with Quinet du Buisson Z, 69.82% TopSpec Medium Gold Melanie Phillips with Ruxton Showgirl, 70.27% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Lotte Seal with Safira, 71.10% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold Sally Bell with Ceryl, 69.96% Fairfax Saddles Prix St. Georges Gold Serena Pincus with Sheepcote Corelator, 69.87% Saracen Horse Feeds FEI Intermediate I Gold Katie Bailey with Bocelli IV, 70.26% For full results click here
Thursday, August 9

Summer Regional Championship: Mount Ballan

The Summer Regional Championships at Mount Ballan Manor in Monmouthshire (3 - 5 August 2018) was full of excitement and fierce competition which kept everyone on the edge of their seat. The highest score of the show was awarded to Lucy Cartwright riding Frederico, a 16hh bay gelding owned by Justin Wessels. Lucy and Frederico scored 72.04% in the Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold after a superb performance by the pair. Lucy was very busy throughout the show and rode four horses in the Childeric Saddles Elementary Gold, Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold, TopSpec Medium Gold and Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold. Lucy put up a good mark in each of her tests. Lucy also recently got married, so congratulations! Debra Fews and her own Fabizio scored the highest in the Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver with a score of 71.48% to take top place on the podium. In the Fairfax Saddles Prix St. Georges Gold, only 0.83% split first and second in a well fought battle. Serena Pincus clinched first place riding Sheepcote Corelator who is a 17hh home bred gelding and is owned by her husband, David Pincus. Serena is based in Bartestree with David and they run Sheepcote Equestrian, where they train both horses and riders from Novice to Grand Prix level. The winner of the TopSpec Medium Silver was Jane Morris with Quinet du Buisson Z. Quinet du Buisson Z is a bay gelding standing at 16hh and is owned by Jane herself. The pair impressed judges Sue Petty (E), Andrea Smith (C) and Carole Thornton (M) which led them to score 69.82% and claim first place. Melanie Phillips and Ruxton Showgirl scored the highest in the TopSpec Medium Gold with a score of 70.27%. Ruxton Showgirl is a 17hh dark bay mare who is home bred by Melanie. Melanie lives on her yard called River View Livery Yard with her husband Julian. She breeds and produces Ruxton Stud Youngstock which she has a selection which are for sale. Melanie also trains horses and riders. Congratulations to all the riders who have qualified for the regionals and well done for all the hard work. British Dressage thanks Mount Ballan and all involved. Regional Champions: Backinaction Preliminary Silver 1st Ellen Glover with Alamo II, 71.61% Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver Debra Fews with Fabizio, 71.48% Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold Lucy Cartwright with Frederico, 72.04% Childeric Saddles Elementary Silver Robert Barker with Woodlander Romance, 70.26% Childeric Saddles Elementary Gold Sonar Murray Brown with Hamlet, 70.68% TopSpec Medium Silver Jane Morris with Quinet du Buisson Z, 69.82% TopSpec Medium Gold Melanie Phillips with Ruxton Showgirl, 70.27% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Lotte Seal with Safira, 71.10% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold Sally Bell with Ceryl, 69.96% Fairfax Saddles Prix St. Georges Gold Serena Pincus with Sheepcote Corelator, 69.87% Saracen Horse Feeds FEI Intermediate I Gold Katie Bailey with Bocelli IV, 70.26% For full results click here
Wednesday, August 8

Summer Regional Championships: The Cabin EC

Scotland’s Summer Regional Championships took place last weekend at the Cabin Equestrian Centre in Aberdeenshire (4 – 5 August 2018). West Lothian’s Jo Barry (40) enjoyed a successful show with three wins aboard her two up-and-coming rides – Hidalgo II who she co-owns with Lady Mary Hope, and Gordon Grainger’s Goofy La Perle (pictured earlier this year). Hidalgo II, a lovely looking chestnut by Rousseau and out of a Donnerhall mare, won the Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold with the biggest score of the show – 72.78% - whilst stable mate ‘Goofy’ won the Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold as well as the TopSpec Medium Gold. Jo and the talented Belissimo M son scored 72.03% and 71.26% respectively to take the two classes. Carl Hester pupil Jo, who represented Great Britain at the FEI Pony Europeans in 1993 with the grey, Duntarvie Edward, has earned great respect as a prolific national championship rider throughout her career. The popular Scot continues to make a determined recovery from a serious head injury sustained in a schooling fall in December 2014. Making a steady but sure return to fitness, she won her first national title since the accident - the PDS Saddles Elementary Freestyle Gold - with Goofy La Perle at the NAF Five Star Winter Championships this April, and they’ll certainly be ones to watch at the LeMieux National Championships in September. Clearly delighted with the performances of her two young rides, Jo took to Facebook to say; “Gold star boys! Scottish Regional Championships and three wins and a second. Goofy won the Elementary Gold & Medium Gold to gain direct qualification in both, and Humphrey won the Novice Gold and was second to Goofy in the Elementary. Humphrey adds Novice qualification to his 6yo Young Horse class and has his hooves crossed for a wildcard in the Elementary. Thanks to all at Cabin EC for doing such a good job. Nationals here we come!” Ailsa Gilchrist (53), from Barrhill in Ayrshire, impressed judges Sarah Leitch (H), Debby Lush (C) and Sue Rowlands (B) with her British-bred 10-year-old, Westpoint Rasaldo (Westpoint Rasputin x Fulton). The chestnut gelding and his rider earned a score of 70.49% to win the Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver ahead of Gillian Peters with Serafina IV and Shirley Melling with Duntarvie Antony who tied for second (68.52%). Dundee-based Joanna Wilkie (45) and her Scottish Sport Horse Romeo XX, an attractive grey by Solaris Amourex, had the winning edge in the TopSpec Medium Silver with a score of 67.43%. “What a weekend!” she said via Facebook . “The lovely Romeo was a star at the BD Scotland Summer Regionals. First place in the Medium Silver Section! We are going to the Nationals! Also fourth on Saturday in a competitive Elementary Silver section with a solid test. Huge thanks to everyone involved.” The runner-up spot was taken by Samantha Turpitt and Bali Dancer (66.89%), the combination who took the Childéric Saddles Elementary Silver with a super score of 70.52%. Congratulations to all of the qualified riders and regional champions. British Dressage thanks the team at The Cabin Equestrian Centre and all involved for a successful Regional Championships, and the National sponsors for their generous support. Regional Champions: Backinaction Preliminary Elizabeth Rose with Sallandt’s Station Master, 68.97% Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver Ailsa Gilchrist with West Point Rasaldo, 70.49% Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold Jo Barry with Hidalgo II, 72.78% Childéric Saddles Elementary Elementary Silver Samantha Turpitt with Bali Dancer, 70.52% Childéric Saddles Elementary Gold Jo Barry with Goofy La Perle, 72.03% TopSpec Medium Silver Joanna Wilkie with Romeo XX, 67.43% TopSpec Medium Gold Jo Barry with Goofy La Perle, 71.26% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver Nicky Heale with Retanach Request, 68.99% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold Sharon Lindop with Spielbanker, 64.91% Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Fenella Ross with Creatzo, 68.60% Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate II Gold Katherine Tullie with Arctic Jazz, 63.90% For full results click here Photo © Kevin Sparrow
Monday, August 6

Gold for Glamourdale in Ermelo

The KWPN licensed stallion Glamourdale, ridden by Great Britain’s Charlotte Fry (22), has been crowned champion seven-year-old at the Longines FEI WBFSH World Breeding Dressage Championships for Young Horses in Ermelo, the Netherlands, 2 – 5 August 2018. The sensational Glamourdale was awarded a score of 87.050% for an emphatic victory following his third place in Friday’s qualifying round. In yesterday’s final, the top four horses from qualifying were still at the top, but all in a different position. The eventual top three are solely stallions, silver going to KWPN stallion Governor (Totilas x Jazz) and Friday’s winner Fuersten-Look (Fürstenball Old x Londonderry) who had to settle for bronze due to a costly mistake. The black powerhouse Glamourdale (Lord Leatherdale x Negro), beautifully presented by Charlotte, was simply breathtaking. The Joop Rodenburg bred stallion of Van Olst Horses gave the jury goosebumps with his impressive moves. “What an incredible final,” said commentating judge Susanne Baarup. “The trot is very powerful, with lots of impulsion. A beautiful rhythm, also in the half-passes. For a 10 we would like to see a more noticeable difference in the transitions to the extension, so a 9.8.” The lowest mark, a 7.6, was given to the walk that is a pure four-beat but could display more overtrack and freedom in the shoulder. “However, the powerful canter has so much quality, nice from the ground and with so much ability to collect that we happily give a 10”, says Baarup. The lovely changes and contact resulted in a 9.4 for submission and a 9.5 for perspective. “An attentive and work-willing horse that undoubtedly has a bright future ahead of him.” The total of 87.050% proved enough for the world title. “I have to thank Glamourdale, he gave me all he’s got!” said an exuberant Charlotte Fry. “He really knew how important this was, he left it all in the arena. I have not watched the last ride of Isabel Freese, I was too nervous. And then I heard a steward say: ‘Charlotte Fry is the winner’. I was speechless, I have never experienced something quite like this. I cannot believe it, I think I should cry, but it has not really dawned on me yet. I am so thankful that I get to ride such a good horse! We keep practicing towards the Grand Prix at home.” Just like last year, the silver went to Adelinde Cornelissen and the J.B.J.M. Streppel bred KWPN stallion Governor, a son of Totilas out of the sister of Adelinde’s previous top horse Parzival (84.143%). The black stallion fluently moved through the test. “Very well presented by Adelinde!” said Baarup. “The trot is powerful and elastic and he performed the half-passes so fluently: a 9. The walk is relaxed, with good overtrack, nice rhythm and the talent for collection is evident, an 8.5. In the uphill jumped canter, Governor displays a lot of posture and ability for collection, a 9. And yet, the highest marks are for the submission and perspective, this very well-trained stallion is so obedient, so work-willing: a 9.5." Adelinde is enthusiastic about the stallion of G.A.M. Korbeld. “He always feels so good, it simply was a wonderful ride. Of course, there are always small things that could have gone better, but I am so happy with him: he really wants to do it for me. I am grateful to the owners that they let me ride such an exceptional horse and to the whole team around me, because they are essential. Also credit to the breeders, without them we would be nowhere.” With the KWPN-approved stallions in the lead, the best combinations of the qualification round still had to start, but a big mistake brought the Johannes Sabel bred Fuersten-Look (Fürstenball x Londonderry) to 84.036% and the third place. Isabel Freese steered the Hanoverian stallion to a 10 for his powerful, elastic, light-footed trot. “Lovely use of his body. The walk was spacious and relaxed, a 9. In the big canter he already showed his ability to collect, although he could be a little more active in his hind legs in the extended canter, but unfortunately there was the mistake in the last line. Therefore an 8.7. Unfortunately, we had to take this mistake into account in the submission, even though we are dealing with a work-willing, well-trained horse bursting with potential. An 8.5 for the submission and a 9.3 for the perspective,” says Baarup. “This happens sometimes, unfortunately,” responded Isabel Freese. President of the jury Jean Michel Roudier was wildly enthusiastic about the quality in the final. “What an incredible display of dressage! The horses were presented in a sympathetic manner and I think we will see many of these talents back in the Grand Prix. A big thanks to the organization of this fantastic event and to Longines, because without a grand sponsor there is no grand sport. Finally, also compliments to the breeders, what a group of wonderful horses we have seen today!” Results of the British riders: First Qualification for 5-Year-Old Horses 24th Iondale (Everdale x Donnerhall) owned by Van Olst Horses, ridden by Charlotte Fry, 7.88 28th Inclusive (Everdale x Uptown) owned by Van Olst Horses, ridden by Charlotte Fry, 7.60 Small Final for 5-Year-Olds 15th Iondale ridden by Charlotte Fry, 7.60 17th Inclusive ridden by Charlotte Fry, 7.52 First Qualification for 6-Year-Olds 38th BKS Fantasia (Fürstenball x Rubin Royal) owned by Georgina West, ridden by Sara Gallop, 6.62 Small Final for 6-Year-Olds 24th BKS Fantasia ridden by Sara Gallop, 6.80 First Qualification for 7-Year-Old Horses 3rd Glamourdale (Lord Leatherdale x Negro) owned by Van Olst Horses, ridden by Charlotte Fry, 85.070% Final for 7-Year-Olds 1st Glamourdale ridden by Charlotte Fry, 87.050% For full results click here Photo c Hippofoto.be (Dirk Caremans)
Friday, August 3

Great Britain's dressage Worlds' short list announced

The British Equestrian Federation (BEF) has today confirmed the short list which will form the nominated entry combinations, selected by the British Dressage selection panel, for this year’s World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina (USA), 11-23 September 2018. The athletes, who will form the nominated list, are (in alphabetical order); Lara Butler with Dr Wilfried and Mrs Ursula Bechtolsheimer’s Rubin Al Asad Charlotte Dujardin CBE with the Mount St John Stud’s Mount St John Freestyle Emile Faurie with Elena Knyaginicheva’s Delatio, and Hof Kasselmann KG’s Dono Di Maggio Carl Hester MBE with Lady Anne Evans, Ann Cory and his own Hawtins Delicato Gareth Hughes with Mr Steve and Mrs Anne Keen’s Don Carissimo, and Mrs Rebecca Hughes, Mrs Julia Hornig and his own Classic Briolinca Spencer Wilton with Jen Goodman and his own Super Nova II All combinations are required to maintain their current form to remain on the list ahead of the Championships. A total of 8 combinations will be submitted to the FEI on the 13 August 2018, as Great Britain’s nominated entries. Dressage Performance Manager, Caroline Griffith comments; “I am absolutely thrilled and delighted for the group of athlete/horse combinations named to our short list for WEG. We have a great mix of exciting young horses with experienced riders and established combinations all of whom have performed well this year so I am very, very excited about the World Games. “All of those campaigning this year have pushed those on the short list hard for their places, a true sign of the strength, depth and quality we have in this country.” The dressage team will be announced in the coming weeks. Equestrian Team GBR is supported by the UK Sport National Lottery funded World Class Programme; the British teams are very grateful to the support they receive from the British Equestrian Federation Fund and official partners Dodson and Horrell, Equi-Trek, FALPRO England, Musto, NAF and Point Two.
Wednesday, August 1

BD Abroad: World Breeding Championships

The following horses and riders have been selected to represent Great Britain this week at the Longines FEI/WBFSH World Breeding Dressage Championships for Young Horses in Ermelo, the Netherlands, 2 – 5 August 2018: Five year olds Charlotte Fry (22) from Scarborough, North Yorkshire (based in Den Hout, the Netherlands) with Van Olst Horses’ Inclusive (bay stallion, 5yrs, 16.2hh, Everdale x Uptown) and Van Olst Horses’ Iondale (bay gelding, 5yrs, Everdale x Donnerhall) - pictured top. Six year olds Sara Gallop (32) from Gloucester, Gloucestershire with Georgina West’s BKS Fantasia (black mare, 6yrs, 15.3hh, Furstenball x Rubin Royal) - pictured right. Seven year olds Charlotte Fry with Van Olst Horses’ Glamourdale (black stallion, 7yrs, 16.3hh, Lord Leatherdale x Negro). Timetable Thursday 2 August Main Arena 10:00 - Qualification five-year-old dressage horses Friday 3 August Main Arena 08:00 - Qualification seven-year-old dressage horses 15:15 – Qualification six-year-old dressage horses Arena 2 08:30 – Small Final five-year-old dressage horses – presented by Horse Telex Saturday 4 August Main Arena 09:00 – Small Final six-year-old dressage horses 15:00 - LONGINES Final for five-year-old dressage horses Arena 2 9:00 - Small Final seven-year-old dressage horses (part I) 12:10 – Small Final seven-year-old dressage horses (part II) Sunday 5 August Main Arena 9:30 – LONGINES Final for seven-year-old dressage horses 15:00 – LONGINES Final for six-year-old dressage horses Event website Start times and live results Live stream
Tuesday, July 31

BD Abroad: Bishop Burton CPEDI results

Results of the British riders who represented Great Britain last week at Bishop Burton CPEDI in East Yorkshire (23 – 27 July 2018). CPEDI3* Grade II Team Test 1st Georgia Wilson with Midnight, 70.73% (GBR) 2nd Suzanna Hext with LJT Enggaards Solitaire, 70.67% (GBR) 3rd Lee Pearson with Styletta, 69.82% (GBR) 4th Natasha Adkinson with Sweet Caledonia, 69.21% (GBR) 5th Julie Payne with Pandora, 68.71% (GBR) 7th Natasha Adkinson with Highlander, 65.21% (GBR) 8th Anna Mae Cole with Ukoon, 65.15% (GBR) Grade II Individual Test 1st Lee Pearson with Styletta, 71.91% (GBR) 2nd Georgia Wilson with Midnight, 71.88% (GBR) 3rd Suzanna Hext with LJT Enggaards Solitaire, 70.88% (GBR) 4th Julie Payne with Pandora, 69.35% (GBR) 6th Natasha Adkinson with Sweet Caledonia, 66.74% (GBR) 7th Natasha Adkinson with Highlander, 65.85% (GBR) 8th Anna Mae Cole with Ukoon, 64.03% (GBR) Grade II Freestyle 1st Suzanna Hext with LJT Enggaards Solitaire, 73.93% (GBR) 2nd Georgia Wilson with Midnight, 73.20% (GBR) 3rd Lee Pearson with Styletta, 73.03% (GBR) 4th Julie Payne with Pandora, 72.89% (GBR) 5th Natasha Adkinson with Sweet Caledonia, 70.90% (GBR) 7th Anna Mae Cole with , 67.70% (GBR) Grade III Team Test 1st Amanda Shirtcliffe with New Princess, 70.69% (GBR) Grade III Individual 2nd Amanda Shirtcliffe with New Princess, 69.32% (GBR) Grade III Freestyle 1st Amanda Shirtcliffe with New Princess, 73.23% (GBR) Grade IV Team Test 1st Izzy Palmer with Touchdown M, 69.90% (GBR) 3rd Heather Bennett with Zavailantika, 67.68% (GBR) 4th Marcelle Ward with Dornroeschen, 67.08% (GBR) 6th Katie Radzik with Lollipop, 63.08% (GBR) Grade IV Individual 1st Izzy Palmer with Touchdown M, 72.10% (GBR) 2nd Heather Bennett with Zavailantika, 68.17% (GBR) 4th Marcelle Ward with Dornroeschen, 65.56% (GBR) 5th Katie Radzik with Lollipop, 59.83% (GBR) Grade IV Freestyle 1st Izzy Palmer with Touchdown M, 74.33% (GBR) 2nd Heather Bennett with Zavailantika, 70.23% (GBR) 3rd Marcelle Ward with Dornroeschen, 68.90% (GBR) 6th Katie Radzik with Lollipop, 62.73% (GBR) Grade V Team Test 1st Charlotte Cundall with Bam Bam, 79.21% (GBR) 2nd Sophie Wells with Gladstone, 77.79% (GBR) 3rd Sophie Wells with Diadem, 77.63% (GBR) 4th Charlotte Cundall with LJT Simply Red, 75.55% (GBR) 5th Tamsin Addison with Fahrenheit 212, 75.37% (GBR) Grade V Individual 1st Sophie Wells with Diadem, 72.14% (GBR) 2nd Sophie Wells with Gladstone, 69.43% (GBR) 3rd Charlotte Cundall with Bam Bam, 68.38% (GBR) 4th Charlotte Cundall with LJT Simply Red, 67.88% (GBR) 5th Tamsin Addison with Fahrenheit 212, 66.45% (GBR) Grade V Freestyle 1st Sophie Wells with Diadem, 74.43% (GBR) 2nd Charlotte Cundall with Bam Bam, 73.85% (GBR) 3rd Tamsin Addison with Fahrenheit 212, 67.73% (GBR) CPEDI2* Grade I Novice 1st Rowan Crosby with Kilimazing Tiger Lily, 65.92% (GBR) - pictured Grade I Team Test 1st Rowan Crosby with Kilimazing Tiger Lily, 67.74% (GBR) 2nd Caitlyn Saddington with Dreamallo, 65.77% (GBR) Grade I Freestyle 1st Rowan Crosby with Kilimazing Tiger Lily, 68.68% (GBR) 2nd Caitlyn Saddington with Dreamallo, 66.24% (GBR) Grade II Novice 1st Emma Douglas with Hibimona, 69.57% (GBR) Grade II Team Test 1st Emma Douglas with Hibimona, 66.87% (GBR) Grade II Freestyle 1st Emma Douglas with Hibimona, 69.61% (GBR) Grade III Novice 1st Jane Lishman with Lordana TG, 72.27% (GBR) 2nd Amanda Shirtcliffe with Plush Music, 71.53% (GBR) 3rd Emma Kent with Zandokan II, 63.53% (GBR) Grade III Team Test 1st Jane Lishman with Lordana TG, 66.76% (GBR) 2nd Amanda Shirtcliffe with Remi, 66.57% (GBR) 3rd Emma Kent with Zandokan II, 61.72% (GBR) Grade III Freestyle 1st Amanda Shirtcliffe with Plush Music, 70.58% (GBR) 2nd Jane Lishman with Lordana TG, 68.81% (GBR) 3rd Emma Kent with Zandokan II, 65.50% (GBR) Grade IV Novice 1st Heather Bennett with Guinevere Aimbry, 66.49% (GBR) 2nd Katie Radzik with Principle FB, 63.56% (GBR) 3rd Ilse Owen with Ashe, 62.30% (GBR) Grade IV Team Test 1st Heather Bennett with Guinevere Aimbry, 64.75% (GBR) 2nd Katie Radzik with Principle FB, 63.63% (GBR) 3rd Isle Owen with Ashe, 62.71% (GBR) Grade IV Freestyle 1st Katie Radzik with Principle FB, 68.47% (GBR) 2nd Heather Bennett with Guinevere Aimbry, 63.97% (GBR) 3rd Ilse Owen with Ashe, 63.53% (GBR) Grade V Novice – Wednesday 1st Hope Hayward with Cadeau K, 65.70% (GBR) 2nd Keeley Squires with Stanbeck by Request, 65.10% (GBR) Grade V Team Test 1st Hope Hayward with Cadeau K, 63.99% (GBR) 2nd Keeley Squires with Stanbeck by Request, 62.29% (GBR) Grade V Freestyle 1st Hope Hayward with Cadeau K, 67.34% (GBR) 2nd Keeley Squires with Stanbeck by Request, 54.58% (GBR) CPEDI1* Grade II Novice - Wednesday 1st Natalie South with Stady Boy, 64.86% (GBR) Grade II Novice – Thursday 1st Natalie South with Stady Boy, 67.90% (GBR) Grade II Freestyle 1st Natalie South with Stady Boy, 67.22% (GBR) Grade IV Novice - Wednesday 1st Alicia Griffiths with Just Arisca, 67.18% (GBR) 2nd Sarah Davies with Hundon Lodger, 63.22% (GBR) 3rd Rachel Collins with Ronja, 62.01% (GBR) Grade IV Novice – Thursday 1st Alicia Griffiths with Just Arisca, 67.07% (GBR) 2nd Sarah Davies with Hundon Lodger, 66.55% (GBR) 3rd Rachel Collins with Ronja, 65.23% (GBR) Grade IV Freestyle 1st Sarah Davies with Hundon Lodger, 67.72% (GBR) 2nd Rachel Collins with Ronja I, 65.50% (GBR) 3rd Alicia Griffiths with Just Arisca, 63.49% (GBR) Grade V Novice – Wednesday 1st Joanne Dagley-Cleworth with Michael Angelo, 63.39% (GBR) 2nd Keeley Squires with Jack, 58.39% (GBR) Grade V Novice – Thursday 1st Joanne Dagley-Cleworth with Michael Angelo, 64.32% (GBR) 2nd Keeley Squires with Jack, 60.52% (GBR) Grade V Freestyle 1st Keeley Squires with Jack, 55.92% (GBR) 2nd Joanne Dagley-Cleworth with Michael Angelo, 51.58% (GBR) For full results click here .
Monday, July 30

Team NAF pony foursome named for Bishop Burton

The British Dressage Pony Selectors have confirmed the four names who will make up Team NAF for the upcoming Pony European Championships held on home soil at Bishop Burton in East Yorkshire, from 8 – 12 August 2018. Team (in alphabetical order): Megan Barratt (16) from Banbury, Oxon riding Susan Barratt’s Valido’s Starlight (bay, gelding, 14.2hh, 14yrs, Valido x Capri Moon) Isobel Lickley (14) from Albrighton, Staffordshire riding Rob and Nicola Lickley’s Valido’s Sunshine (bay, mare, 14.1hh, 15yrs, s. Valido) Annabella Pidgley (13) from Windsor, Berkshire riding Sarah Pidgely’s Ine (chestnut, mare, 14.1hh, 11yrs, Constantin x Handryk) Sophie Taylor (15) from Preston, Lancashire riding her own George Clooney B.S. (grey, gelding, 14.1hh, 7yrs, s. Caesar 171) Reserves: Holly Kerslake (14) from Lifton, Devon riding her own Valhallas Zorro (black, stallion, 14.1hh, 9yrs, s. Valhallas Lord Matrafal) Olivia Wrennall (16) from Burnham, Buckinghamshire riding her own Donna Schuflo (bay, mare, 14.2hh, 10yrs, Don Schufro x Florett AS) Jason Brautigam, Chief Executive for British Dressage, commented: “With so many strong pony combinations coming forward for selection this year and some great performances to match, it’s been a tough job for our Selectors this year, with very little separating the top six riders. In Megan, Isobel, Annabella and Sophie we have a strong mix of talent, experience and ability to fly the flag and hopefully challenge for a medal.” “I’d encourage everyone to visit Bishop Burton to see the next generation in action and get behind the riders, as home support makes a huge difference. We are really looking forward to hosting the European Championships in the UK and wish all of the riders and their connections the best of luck next week.” The squad of six will travel to Kilbees Farm in Berkshire for a final training camp this weekend (4 – 5 August) before making the journey north to Bishop Burton on Monday. Competition gets underway on Wednesday 8 August with two days of the team test, where the first medals will be decided, before the riders then battle for individual honours on Friday and Saturday, with the freestyle on Sunday bringing the championships to a close. It’s a great opportunity to get behind our Team NAF quartet so please do try and make it to Bishop Burton to support them in action. The FEI Pony Eventing and Showjumping championships take place alongside the dressage so there’s plenty of action to see. Entry is free for spectators and you can find a timetable on www.bishopburtonponyeuros2018.co.uk British Dressage is grateful to team sponsors NAF for their generous support of our Under 21 International teams, our official suppliers LeMieux and Land Rover, as well as Tony and Sarah Pidgley for their kind hospitality at Kilbees Farm.
Sunday, July 29

Second spot for Britain at Hickstead CDIO

The 2018 series of the Longines FEI Nations Cup reached its climax with the last day of the Hickstead CDIO.  The final leg may have featured just four teams but the competition has been close throughout and it was France who ended on top.  After days of sweltering heat, today the weather broke in Sussex and it was back with a bang to more typical British conditions for the final freestyle action.  French rider Pierre Volla scored his second win of the show with his precious mare Badinda Altena with 76.32% in atrocious conditions but the little horse he saved from the slaughterhouse tried her heart out.  Hayley Watson Greaves was again the British Nations Cup lynchpin with ever reliable Rubins Nite and their 74.57% gave them second individually but also was valuable for the team as Vicky Thompson Winfield had a tough time with the stallion Mango Jacaro as the weather and blowy arena were not to his liking but they ended with a more than respectable 68.52%.  Third spot went to Miguel Ralao Duarte on the stunning grey Xenofnte D’atela with 71.7%. So when the final calculations had been done, it was France on 26, GB 30 level with Portugal but the home side edged it by virtue of a better Grand Prix performance with Sweden in fourth on 37.   They may have finished last here, but their consistency through the season gave them the overall winner’s title for the Longines FEI Nations Cup series for the second year in a row. The bad weather continued for the CDI3* Grand Prix Freestyle and there was an upset when red hot favourite Richard Davison retired Bubblingh three quarters of the way through his test as he couldn’t hear his music amid the rain and wind.   This opened the door for Marie Emilie Bretenoux to enter and take the class for France with Quartz of Jazz with 72.95%.   Matt Frost and AMD Don Rosso II were runners up to make it a good week for the duo; “He coped really, really well.   I had a couple of mistakes in my one time changes where he lost balance but I’m really pleased,” Matt said. “He definitely preferred the weather today than the heat of the last few days too!” he added.   They’re now focusing on making a challenge at the LeMieux National Championships before heading to a few more CDIs later in the year. Third was Alex Hardwick with Royal Chester with 69.7%. The difficulty level raised for the CDIu25 riders on their final day as it was Grand Prix time and Claire Gallimore was once again the winner with Annette Ballerina.   They posted 67.07% which again will give them confidence ahead of their trip to Exloo for the European Championships.   Amy Schiessl was second with beautifully marked skewbald Mr Mercury with 66.38.   Lucy Pincus finished third and fourth with her home bred horses, Sheepcote Fiesta and Sheepcote Doncalisto on 65.61% and 65.56 respectively, the latter also off to Exloo on the British team. Lucy Jane Amy (20) made up for missing out on a place in the Team NAF Young Rider squad by dominating the CDIYR at Hickstead and secured her hat-trick of victories in today’s freestyle.   She had to battle gusty winds but was spared the rain as her test fell between showers but it was certainly an eventful performance with ‘arena malfunctions’ on three occasions.   Fallen speakers and wayward dressage boards did little to disturb her partner Full Time as the duo pressed on despite the conditions to score 73.06% and win by nearly three percent.   Lucy, originally from Jersey but now based with Richard Barratt, said; “He was so well behaved in there; absolutely amazing. Any other horse wouldn’t have coped with what he had to!   He was really relaxed considering the conditions and actually felt the best of all his tests today.” Lucy has had ‘Hughie’ since he was just a yearling so knows him inside and out.   “I know him so well and he’s really smart…sometimes a little too smart!” The combination are now back to base to train ahead of the LeMieux Nationals in September. It was a hat-trick too for Germany in the Junior ranks as Hentriette Schmidt claimed today’s finale freestyle with a great 74.67% in tricky conditions with Rocky’s Sunshine.   A consistent week for Britain’s Emma Bond ended with second spot with Lime Walk on 74.67% while compatriot Jessica Sanderson took third on 70.21% with Wanour S. Full results – click here  
Saturday, July 28

British breeding on top at Hickstead

British breeding won the final day of the small tour competition at the Hickstead CDIO3* as the Inter I freestyle was claimed by Alice Oppenheimer with her homebred Headmore Devina to make it a hat-trick of wins for British bred horses. Thursday’s Prix St Georges was claimed by Hannah Biggs with Don Caledonia, bred in Scotland by Reay Campbell while yesterday it was Nicola Buchanan who won the Inter I with Half Moon Dark Magic, bred in Dorset by Julie Deverill. A great achievement for our home grown stars of the future. Alice was thrilled with her Dimaggio young star, the youngest in the class to be exact at just eight, having surpassed all expectations on her international small tour debut. A second place in the PSG on Thursday was a delight despite playing it safe in the heat, then it was fourth on Friday in the Inter I despite a bit of stage fright and then a victory in the freestyle. “She was amazing today!” beamed Alice. “That was by far her best test of the week. I didn’t push her on day one and yesterday she didn’t have a very happy warm up as it was so busy early in the morning and she went very introverted on me. She’s a real thinker so came out much happier having had the night to think on it. I was a bit emotional coming out of my test as she was with me 100% and felt amazing.” With just three Inter I classes behind her, it was Davina’s first Inter I Freestyle and that meant brand new music cleverly put together by Sara Green with a touch of Fleetwood Mac in the canter section. Alice was quick to praise the work done by Dannie Morgan with Davina when she was a youngster; “She’s never been what you’d call naughty but just got frightened. She’d bolt and I couldn’t hold her so he took her on and built her confidence; she simply wouldn’t be the horse she is without Dannie.” She also praised her farrier Richard Lovejoy who has a soft spot for the mare but added; “Richard, I’ve won the bet!” What that bet was remains firmly between the two of them! In the CDIO it was Special day and it was Louise Bell, still flying high after yesterday’s Grand Prix performance with Into the Blue and Fiona Bigwood who had been put forward. Sadly, Fiona was forced to withdraw after a pre-existing injury was aggravated during her test antics yesterday so it was down to Louise to fly the flag. She answered the call in true Bell style with a 69.61% to help the team with a third place. It could have been more but for a few power propelled moments when the wind caught ‘Dynamo’ from behind. It was two almost matching Iberian-bred greys who topped the class. First was Portugal’s Vasco Mira Godhinho with Bariloche on 71.51% and his half passes were sublime – Vasco proudly pointed out that he’d earned nines yesterday for the movement. “He went very well yesterday, one of the best tests I’ve done with him. Today he was more relaxed but also a little tired but he was still very good. It’s only our second year in at Grand Prix and I know I can get more from him. He’s naturally talented and quite special to me, we have great respect for each other.” Second went to Anne Sophie Serre for France with Vistoso de Massa with 70.46%. The final FEI Nations Cup of 2018 comes to an exciting climax tomorrow with the Freestyle. Hayley Watson-Greave and Vicky Thompson Winfield will be in action for the home side. The CDI3* Grand Prix Special accolade won’t be travelling to a galaxy far far away but over the Channel to France for rider Bertrand Liegard and his horse Star Wars. They were the sole duo to break 70% with 70.34% despite the windy conditions while British based Dane Ulrik Molgaard finished second with his 17 year old Michellino sired Michigan, owned by Claus Munkedal. “I don’t care what mark I get, it’s the best Special he’s ever done!” beamed Ulrik as he left the arena. Well, the score was 68.76% which wasn’t quite a new PB but it was enough for second. Third and best Brit went to Gareth Hughes and his latest star to emerge from his Warwickshire base, KK Woodstock, owned by the Krolls. In his first ever Grand Prix Special, the elegant, leggy bay was slightly unnerved by the blustery conditions but showed a great deal of promise. The wind got behind him to spoil both lines of one time changes and, quick thinking as ever, Gareth did his best to fit them in post-spook but the damage had been done to give 68.76%. It was a first taste of action in the CDIu25 ranks and Dutch-based Brit Claire Gallimore made a rare trip home from where she’s based with Tristian Tucker a profitable one with victory in the Inter II with her own Annette Ballerina. Their test was forward and full of energy with only a mistake in one of the canter pirouettes when the British national anthem boomed out over the tannoy in the next door arena. The win with 70.46% is a great boost for the duo ahead of the impending FEI u25 European Championships in Exloo, 13 – 17 August. “I’m really pleased with her today, she kept it under control despite the windy conditions,” said Claire. “It’s really special to be back home!” she added. And the great news is that Claire will be returning to British shores permanently in October when she sets up her own base in East Sussex. Having finished fourth on Thursday in the Inter A test, Gloucestershire rider Sara Gallop went up a gear to top the final class of the medium tour, the Inter B. Riding her own Sandreo sired Bandreo, Sara posted an international personal best score at any level with Sandreo, who has competed at Big Tour internationally already. “I’m really pleased with him today as he can get quite hot in the arena and it was so windy but he held it together. We’ve spent the year trying to build his confidence in the arena and at this show he’s gone from strength to strength which is perfect,” Sara said. The duo now have Saumur CDI in their sights in early September. The CDIP came to a close with the Freestyle and the honours went to Olivia Whitelaw riding her own Brouwershaven’s Vicerory with a new international personal best of 70.85%, over four marks up on their previous tally. Close behind was Sophie Williams with Ella on 70.77% with Holly James and Classic’s Charmeur third with 70%. For full results and times for tomorrow (Sunday) – click here  
Saturday, July 28

Hickstead CDIO Friday

On day two of the Hickstead CDIO3* the big tour action got underway as the Grand Prix riders began their campaign. The Nations Cup may only have four teams but it proved a close contest after round one, the Grand Prix. Team order put our most experienced rider, Vicki Thompson Winfield first to go and she posted an excellent 69.02% with Sam Francis’ Spanish-bred stallion Mango Jacaro. It was then on to our Nations Cup debutant Louise Bell with her ex-Working Hunter Champion Into the Blue and she showed no signs of nerves on her first big stage to post an international personal best 71.67%. Third for the home side was Fiona Bigwood and Kjaerholms Abutsiaq who just lacked confidence in his piaffe/passage work and had a ‘moment’ in the final centreline to end on 65% but this is still a partnership in its early stages so there will be more to come. The anchorman role went to Hayley Watson-Greaves and the ever reliant Rubins Nite. The reigning National Champions were in fine form and posted 70.56% to give us a final boost. The class was won by Pierre Volla for France with Badinda Altena, who were also victors here last year. They’ve been to the Olympics and Europeans together so are vastly experienced and have come a long way since he found her when destined for the slaughter house aged three. Their score of 72.67% gave them the win and also helped France to share the overall equal lead with Britain in the Nations Cup standings with Portugal in third and Sweden fourth but it’s all very close with the GP Special and Freestyle to come. In the CDI3* it was Spencer Wilton who lead an all-British podium with Jen Goodman’s Super Nova II with a solid 74.15%.  After suffering with agonising back pain since Hartpury where he did only the Grand Prix with ‘Neville’, Spencer was hoping for a safe performance, ideally with no mistakes. “We’re both not at full fitness and four days ago, I wouldn’t have even been able to ride but thanks to the World Class physio, I’m here. Had to play safe and unfortunately had a costly mistake in my one time changes. But I can say it was the most relaxed he’s ever been!” said Spencer afterwards. In second was Richard Davison with Gwendolyn Meyer’s Bubblingh on 73.39% and third went to Gareth Hughes with his latest GP star KK Woodstock owned by Martin and Claudine Kroll with 71.21%. The small tour Inter I was headed by Nicola Buchanan and Half Moon Dark Magic, or Paddy to his friends, with 70.98%. “He tried his heart out and seemed to love the heat as he did at Hartpury – he came out ready to go again!” said Nicola. “He just loves competing and has a good attitude to work. At nine, he’s just so consistent; I never imagined he’d get me here!” she concluded. The duo are Stoneleigh bound having gained direct qualification in both the Fairfax PSG and Saracen Horse Feeds Inter I for the LeMieux National Championships. In the Youth ranks, it was Individual test day and two classes, the Junior and Young Riders, it was a repeat of yesterday with wins for Henriette Schmidt for Germany with Rocky’s Sunshine on 72.89% in the Juniors and Lucy Jane Amy scored a stunning 73.33% with Extra Time to take the Young Rider section. Natasha Powell-Richards was our pony victor with Oosting Amigo on 69.68%. For full scores and times for tomorrow – click here  
Friday, July 27

Hickstead CDIO Thursday

On day two of the Hickstead CDIO3* the big tour action got underway as the Grand Prix riders began their campaign. The Nations Cup may only have four teams but it proved a close contest after round one, the Grand Prix. Team order put our most experienced rider, Vicki Thompson Winfield first to go and she posted an excellent 69.02% with Sam Francis’ Spanish-bred stallion Mango Jacaro. It was then on to our Nations Cup debutant Louise Bell with her ex-Working Hunter Champion Into the Blue and she showed no signs of nerves on her first big stage to post an international personal best 71.67%. Third for the home side was Fiona Bigwood and Kjaerholms Abutsiaq who just lacked confidence in his piaffe/passage work and had a ‘moment’ in the final centreline to end on 65% but this is still a partnership in its early stages so there will be more to come. The anchorman role went to Hayley Watson-Greaves and the ever reliant Rubins Nite. The reigning National Champions were in fine form and posted 70.56% to give us a final boost. The class was won by Pierre Volla for France with Badinda Altena, who were also victors here last year. They’ve been to the Olympics and Europeans together so are vastly experienced and have come a long way since he found her when destined for the slaughter house aged three. Their score of 72.67% gave them the win and also helped France to share the overall equal lead with Britain in the Nations Cup standings with Portugal in third and Sweden fourth but it’s all very close with the GP Special and Freestyle to come. In the CDI3* it was Spencer Wilton who lead an all-British podium with Jen Goodman’s Super Nova II with a solid 74.15%.  After suffering with agonising back pain since Hartpury where he did only the Grand Prix with ‘Neville’, Spencer was hoping for a safe performance, ideally with no mistakes. “We’re both not at full fitness and four days ago, I wouldn’t have even been able to ride but thanks to the World Class physio, I’m here. Had to play safe and unfortunately had a costly mistake in my one time changes. But I can say it was the most relaxed he’s ever been!” said Spencer afterwards. In second was Richard Davison with Gwendolyn Meyer’s Bubblingh on 73.39% and third went to Gareth Hughes with his latest GP star KK Woodstock owned by Martin and Claudine Kroll with 71.21%. The small tour Inter I was headed by Nicola Buchanan and Half Moon Dark Magic, or Paddy to his friends, with 70.98%. “He tried his heart out and seemed to love the heat as he did at Hartpury – he came out ready to go again!” said Nicola. “He just loves competing and has a good attitude to work. At nine, he’s just so consistent; I never imagined he’d get me here!” she concluded. The duo are Stoneleigh bound having gained direct qualification in both the Fairfax PSG and Saracen Horse Feeds Inter I for the LeMieux National Championships. In the Youth ranks, it was Individual test day and two classes, the Junior and Young Riders, it was a repeat of yesterday with wins for Henriette Schmidt for Germany with Rocky’s Sunshine on 72.89% in the Juniors and Lucy Jane Amy scored a stunning 73.33% with Extra Time to take the Young Rider section. Natasha Powell-Richards was our pony victor with Oosting Amigo on 69.68%. For full scores and times for tomorrow – click here  
Friday, July 27

Summer Regional Championships: Port Royal

The Northern Regional Championships at Port Royal were blessed with scorching weather and equally scorching competition to match (20 – 22 July). Earning the highest score of the show was Stena Hoerner with Janice Oram’s six-year-old Seagry Tobias. The Totilas x Sandro Hit gelding earned a phenomenal 75% in the Childeric Saddles Elementary Silver after performing a sublime test piloted by former Eilberg pupil Stena. The trip to Stoneleigh will be a first for Seagry Tobias, known as ‘Toby’ at home, whilst Stena will return to the LeMieux National Dressage after a ten year break following her last appearance in 2008. Stena is based in Conwy, Wales, with her partner Greg Sims with whom she runs GSH Dressage at her family home, Tremorfa Stud. Speaking about her win she said that she was “over the moon” with the way that Toby performed before adding that she earned her first ever 10, awarded for an excellent final halt, immobility and salute. Also returning to the Nationals arena after a short break of three years is former youth team rider Natasha Leak. With her own eight-year-old Belissimo, Natasha was victorious in the TopSpec Medium Silver class scoring 70.05% to take home the spoils. Based at Willerby Hill Equestrian, Natasha has produced the chestnut gelding from Novice through to Medium alongside running a busy yard. Natasha will be joined at Stoneleigh by her 2008 Pony European Championships team mate Amy Woodhead, who picked up two more wins at Port Royal to add to her Shearwater six-year-old semi-final title with MSJ Zonetta. Victoria Peace’s stallion Branduardi (pictured) earned his place in the Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges starting line-up after winning his qualifier with 70.44%, whilst the star mare Zonetta returned to add another title to her CV, this time in the Childeric Saddles Elementary Gold class. Speaking on Facebook Amy said, “Wow what can I say about this week at Port Royal regionals! The horses definitely did me very proud winning three classes - the six-year-olds, Elementary Gold and the PSG! And two five-year-olds both qualifying for the National Championships this year so so proud! Thank you to all the amazing owners of these fantastic horses and of course the team I have around me! Setting up on my own was the most terrifying thing I have ever done but it’s all down to the team that are always there to support me and make sure the horses are happy!” Scoring an impressive 72.18% in the Backinaction Preliminary Silver competition was Sheffield-based rider Jordan Kavanagh with his own eight-year-old mare Fluer. Despite only being a partnership for a matter of months, Jordan and Fluer impressed the judges panel of Mark Ruddock, Tim Downes and Helen Bradley to win the class of 36 by almost three percent. The Youth riders were hot on Jordan’s heels and dominated the remaining qualifying places; Victoria Turner and Ceri Rogerson scored 69.54% and 69.48% to complete the podium. Emma Haigh and Darryl Thickitt were the winners of the Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver and Gold classes. Whilst Angela Sykes Brown with Happy Hope II won the Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver with Lara Dyson and Jazzed Up taking the win in the Gold section. Congratulations to all of our qualified riders and regional champions. British Dressage thanks Port Royal EC for four years of brilliant competition, as well all the National sponsors for their generous support. Results BackinAction Preliminary Silver 1st Jordan Kavanagh with Fleur, 72.18% Dodson & Horrell Novice Silver 1st Emma Haigh with Estelle, 71.05% Dodson & Horrell Novice Gold 1st Darryl Thickit with Faszination I, 73.15% Childeric Saddles Elementary Silver 1st Stena Hoerner with Seagry Tobias, 75% Childeric Saddles Elementary Gold 1st Amy Woodhead with MSJ Zonetta, 72.71% TopSpec Medium Silver 1st Natasha Leak with Belissimo, 70.05% TopSpec Medium Gold 1st Rebecca Hughes with Classic Goldstrike, 69.32% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Silver 1st Angela Sykes Brown with Happy Hope II, 66.89% Equine Construction Advanced Medium Gold 1st Lara Edwards with Jazzed Up, 71.23% Fairfax Saddles Prix St Georges Gold 1st Amy Woodhead with Branduardi, 70.44% Saracen Horse Feeds Intermediate I Gold 1st Roxanne Shipley with Headmore Dream On, 65.53% For full results click here. To view photos from the event visit the Port Royal Facebook page .  
Thursday, July 26

BD Abroad: Deauville CDI

A strong contingent of riders headed abroad last week to represent Great Britain at the popular CDI Deauville, France (19 – 22 June 2018). Maria Eilberg earned Britain’s sole victories of the show with a double of wins in the Medium tour competition with her own, Hermione Black and Penny Pollards’ Royal Concert. The stunning grey gelding by Royal Diamond has come into his own at the level and showed his talent with Maria in the saddle to earn two great scores of 72.54% and 71.45%. The success for team Eilberg continued in the Grand Prix as Michael Eilberg finished best of the Brits with his faithful dancing partner Marakov. The star horse demonstrated his experience and skill once again to earn third place in the Grand Prix with 70.54%, before moving up a place into second in the Grand Prix Special with another brilliant score of 70.78%. Speaking about their ace results on Facebook Eilberg Dressage praised Marakov for “strutting his stuff in the special, in no way shape or form looking 18-years-old.” Also faring well in the Grand Prix class were leading ladies Louise Bell and Henriette Andersen. Henriette and her own 13-year-old Flavio (Florencio x Glueckspliz) earned a top ten finish with 69.56% for seventh place. Whilst Louise and her eye-catching ride Into the Blue improved on their 67.21% Grand Prix test to score a fabulous 70.90% in the Grand prix Kur to Music leaving them in sixth place. The youngsters enjoyed a valuable experience overseas with four riders attending their first international show on the continent. Lily Laughton improved on her placings throughout the week with Maddy Whelan’s Ode to Shannon, her best result came in the Freestyle competition were the duo earned a third place rosette for their 68.54% test. Three Juniors travelled to Deauville and also built momentum throughout their debut week. 17-year-old Megan Assouline enjoyed two top three placings with plus 70% scores aboard Mette Assouline’s Ramanda EG; whilst Charlotte Snape was hot on her heels finishing just one place behind in the Junior Freestyle to Music with a score of 70.25% with her own Camelot III. In the Young Rider competitions, former Pony team medallist Rebecca Bell took home a trio of second place spoils with her mother Caroline’s Nibeley Union Hit. Rebecca and ‘Una’ scored 67.74%, 67.45% and 71.37% for their three consistent tests. Congratulations to all who travelled to France to take part. Results Prix St Georges 1st Karen Nijvelt with Elysias, 73.40% (NED) 8th Henriette Cheetham with Dancer Khan, 68.28% (GBR) 11th Dean Skates with Super Blue, 66.50% (GBR) 14th Michael Eilberg with Daltrey, 66.12% (GBR) 17th Jenny Ward with Brazil P, 63.92% (GBR) 19th Sally Bell with Ceryl, 63.23% (GBR) 25th Sally Bell with State Secret, 60% (GBR) Intermediare I 1st Kara Bosman with Fiderprincess, 71.61% (BEL) 9th Dean Skates with Super Blue, 67.20% (GBR) 10th Michael Eilberg with Daltry, 67.01% (GBR) 17th Sally Bell with State Secret, 65.19% (GBR) 19th Henriette Cheetham with Dancer Khan, 64.55% (GBR) 20th Sally Bell with Ceryl, 64.36% (GBR) 23rd Jenny Ward with Brasil P, 63.08% (GBR) Intermediare I Kur to Music 1st Karen Nijvelt with Elysias, 78.29% (NED) 8th Dean Skates with Super Blue, 68.33% (GBR) 10th Henriette Cheetham with Dancer Khan, 67.25% (GBR) 12th Sally Bell with State Secret, 65.79% (GBR) Medium Tour – Intermediare B 1st Maria Eilberg with Royal Concert, 71.45% (GBR) 2nd Maria Eilberg with Sarotti, 70.37% (GBR) 3rd Henrietta Cheetham with Schattentanzerin, 65.95% (GBR) Medium Tour – Intermediare II 1st Maria Eilberg with Royal Concert, 72.54% (GBR) 2nd Maria Eilberg with Sarotti, 67.94% (GBR) 3rd Henrietta Cheetham with Schattentanzerin, 64.83% (GBR) Grand Prix 1st Estelle Wettstein with West Side Story, 70.78% (SUI) 3rd Michael Eilberg with Marakov, 70.54% (GBR) 7th Henriette Andersen with Flavio, 69.56% (GBR) 16th Louise Bell with Into the Blue, 67.21% (GBR) 30th Bobby Hayler with Aldborough Rubinhall, 64.47% (GBR) Grand Prix Special 1st Estelle Wettstein with West Side Story, 72.02% (SUI) 2nd Michael Eilberg with Marakov, 70.78% (GBR) Grand Prix Kur to Music 1st Tosca Visser with Asther de Jeu, 76.07% (NED) 6th Louise Bell with Into the Blue, 70.90% (GBR) 12th Bobby Hayler with Aldborough Rubinhall, 66.41% (GBR) Pony Team 1st Lucie-Anouk Baumgurtel with Classic Dream, 73.38% (GER) 6th Lily Laughton with Ode to Shannon, 65.04% (GBR) Pony Individual 1st Lucie-Anouk Baumgurtel with Classic Dream, 72.65% (GER) 4th Lily Payne with Ode to Shannon, 67.74% (GBR) Pony Kur to Music 1st Lucie Anouk-Baumgurtel with Classic Dream, 74.04% (GER) 3rd Lily Laughton with Ode to Shannon, 68.54% (GBR) Junior Team 1st Coco Soffers with Formidable, 71.41% (NED) 4th Charlotte Snape with Camelot III, 68.58% (GBR) 6th Megan Assouline with Ramanda EG, 67.42% (GBR) 8th Merlyn Latimer Smith with Ambrosini, 64.09% (GBR) Junior Individual 1st Coco Soffers with Formidable, 71.42% (NED) 2nd Megan Assouline with Ramanda EG, 70.34% (GBR) 4th Charlotte Snape with Camelot III, 69.06% (GBR) 8th Merlyn Latimer Smith with Ambrosini, 62.20% (GBR) Junior Kur to Music 1st Coco Soffers with Formidable, 72. 87% (NED) 2nd Megan Assouline with Ramanda EG, 70.54% (GBR) 3rd Charlotte Snape with Camelot III, 70.25% (GBR) 8th Merlyn Latimer Smith with Ambrosini, 65.70% (GBR) Young Riders Team 1st Bo Oudhof with Colt Sollenburg, 69.90% (NED) 2nd Rebecca Bell with Nibeley Union Hit, 67.74% (GBR) Young Riders Individual 1st Bo Oudhof with Colt Sollenburg, 70.49% (NED) 2nd Rebecca Bell with Nibeley Union Hit, 67.45% (GBR) Young Riders Kur to Music 1st Bo Oudhof with Colt Sollenburg, 74.25% (NED) 2nd Rebecca Bell with Nibeley Union Hit, 71.37% (GBR) For full results click here .
Wednesday, July 25

Preview: Hickstead CDIO 3* Nations Cup

This week sees the highly anticipated Hickstead CDIO 3*/P/J/YR event return to the premier Southern venue (25 – 29 July 2018). A host of stars are lined up to contest the CDIO 3 * Nations Cup competition with representatives from Great Britain, France, Sweden and Portugal. Spencer Wilton and Jen Goodman’s Supernova will start following their successful return to the arena at last month’s Hartpury CDI 3*. Spencer is joined by his fellow 2017 European Championships compatriot Gareth Hughes who will present both Rebecca Hughes and Julia Hornig’s Classic Briolinca and the Kroll family’s KK Woodstock. Also amongst those also representing the home nation are Henriette Andersen, Matt Frost, Sarah Millis and Laura Tomlinson. The foreign entries present a handful of WEG hopefuls including French JO/JEM squad combinations Bertrand Liegard with Star Wars, Marie-Emilie Bretenoux with Quartz of Jazz and Henry Ludovic with After You. Canadian turned American rider Ashley Holzer will compete PJ Rizvi’s Sir Caramello (Sir Donnerhall x Feiner Stern), the in-form combination have won several CDI Grand Prix classes worldwide throughout the season. The CDI2* small and medium tour competitions are set to be equally as competitive with no less than 41 horses entered from 12 different countries. Britain will be represented by 21 riders including in-form ladies Nicola Buchanan, Hannah Biggs, Kate Cowell, Nathalie Kayal and Vicky Thompson-Winfield. The Youth competitions provide a fantastic opportunity for our younger riders to dip their toes into the water of international competition. With Pony, Junior, Young Rider and U25 Grand Prix classes running there will be plenty of opportunity for home success across the age groups. Visit Hickstead for an all-round dressage experience including amazing shopping and the added opportunity of two brilliant social events, the gala evening and the summer party. Click here to view the complete entry lists. Click here for start lists and results.
Wednesday, July 25

BD Abroad: Bishop Burton CPEDI

The following horses and riders have been selected to represent Great Britain this week at Bishop Burton CPEDI in East Yorkshire (24 – 27 July 2018). CPEDI 1* Joanne Dagley-Cleworth from Wyboston, Bedfordshire, with her own Michael Angelo (14-year-old gelding by Medoc) Alicia Griffiths from Winterbourne, Bristol, with Kate Fletcher’s Just Arisca (18-year-old mare by Just Zulu) Rachel Collins from Sandwich, Kent, with her own Ronja I (15-year-old mare by Sandro Hit) Keeley Squires from Rotherham, South Yorkshire, with her own Jack XXI (nine-year-old gelding) Alison Fryer from Marlborough, Wiltshire, with her own Nap Hand (18-year-old gelding) Sarah Davies from Grimsby, Lincolnshire, with Kathryn Bartlett’s Hundon Lodger (17-year-old gelding by Medoc) Amanda Shirtcliffe from Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, with her own Active Testarossa (Seven-year-old mare by Totilias) Natalie South from Romford, Essex, with Deborah Hall’s Stady Boy (12-year-old gelding) Daniel Olley from Longfield, Kent, with his own Grandios JBH (seven-year-old gelding by Zandio O) CPEDI 2* Jane Lishman from Darlington, Durham with Anne Pearson’s Lordana TG (11-year-old mare by Londonderry) Hope Hayward from Glastonbury, Somerset, with her own Cadeau K (nine-year-old gelding by Sir Donnerhall) Keeley Squires from Rotherham, South Yorkshire, with her own Stanbeck by Request (13-year-old gelding by Synod Replica) Emma Douglas from Winslow, Buckinghamshire, with her own Hibimona (six-year-old mare by Briljant) Ilse Owen from Great Missenden, Buckinghamshire, with her own Ashe (13-year-old gelding) Vicky Nurcombe from Loughborough, Leicestershire, with her own Waver Springs Rubieux (15-year-old gelding by Rotspon) Emma Kent from Erith, Kent, with her own Zandokan II (14-year-old gelding by Concorde) Katie Radzik from Ashford, Kent, with Alva Kay Evans’ Principle FB (14-year-old gelding by Prince Thatch) Rowan Crosby from Wrexham, Flintshire, with her own Kilimazing Tiger Lily (eight-year-old mare by Errismore Prince) Ashleigh Jones from Northfield, West Midlands, with her own L’Aban (seven-year-old gelding by Blue Hors Rosoff) Amanda Shirtcliffe from Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, with Elizabeth Geldard’s Remi II (nine-year-old mare by Desert Moon) Heather Bennett from Goole, Humberside, with Elizabeth Haigh’s Guinevere Aimbry (seven-year-old mare by Totilas) Caitlyn Saddington from Wigan, Lancashire, with her own Dreamallo (12-year-old gelding by Dream On) CPEDI 3* Jane Lishman from Darlington, Durham, with Martin Weston’s San Quentin QOS (seven-year-old gelding by Sandro Hit) Georgia Wilso n from Abergele, Conwy, with her own Midnight II (nine-year-old mare by Hilkens Black Delight) Mari Durward Akhurst from Amersham, Bukinghamshire, with her own Lebensfreude (nine-year-old gelding by Laudabilis) Gillian Brown from Berwick upon Tweed, Northumberland, with her own Meikle Rustler (13-year-old gelding by Pentrefelin Viscount) Emma Kent from Erith, Kent, with her own Zandokan II (14-year-old gelding by Concorde) Julie Blanchard from Ellerker, East Yorkshire, with her own Fatila (16-year-old mare by Harvard) Nicky Greenhill from Elstead, Surrey, with her own and Gary Greenhill’s Betty Boo (nine-year-old mare by Benetton Dream) Amanda Shirtcliffe from Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, with Jon McFarland’s New Princess (11-year-old mare by Newman) Katie Radzik from Ashford, Kent, with Joyce Wood’s Lollipop (15-year-old mare by Louis Ferdinand) Heather Bennett from Goole, Humberside, with her own Zavailantika (14-year-old mare by Rhodium) Sophie Christiansen from Godalming, Surrey, with her own Amazing Romance (nine-year-old gelding) Marcelle Ward f rom West Ashling, West Sussex, with her own Dornroeschen (12-year-old mare by De Niro) Susanna Wade from Grantham, Lincolnshire, with Angela Niemeyer Eastwood’s D’Artagnan III (21-year-old gelding by D’Accord) Anna-Mae Cole from Newton Abbott, Devon, with her own Ukoon (17-year-old gelding by Ikoon) Sophie Wells from Newark, Nottinghamshire, with her own and Dr Jacqueline Walker’s Gladstone (seven-year-old stallion by Cyden Moorland Bodyguard) and Diadem Julie Payne from Oxford, Oxfordshire, with her own Pandora (17-year-old mare by Pascal) Isobelle Palmer from Leeds, Yorkshire, with Sophie Wells’ Touchdown M (18-year-old gelding by Jazz) Charlotte Cundall from Driffield, East Yorkshire, with Henrietta Cheetham’s LJT Simply Rd (nine-year-old mare by Sixten Langholt) and Brenda Reddy’s Bambam (12-year-old gelding by Johnson) Natasha Adkinson from Haxey, North Lincolnshire, with her own Sweet Caledonia (10-year-old mare by San Remo) and her own Highlander XII (11-year-old gelding by His Highness) Sir Lee Pearson from Bagnall, Staffordshire, with his own Styletta (nine-year-old mare by Sandro’s Dancer) Erin Orford from High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, with Annabel Whittet’s Dior UKH (15-year-old mare by Dimaggio) Susanna Hext from Tetbury, Gloucestershire, with Henrietta Cheetham’s LJT enggaards Solitaire (13-year-old gelding by Blue Hors Soprano) and Henrietta Cheetham’s LJT Lucas Normark (17-year-old stallion by Ravaldi) For start lists and results click here .
Wednesday, July 25

Great Britain’s para-dressage squad named for WEG

The British Equestrian Federation (BEF) has today confirmed the four combinations, selected by the British para-dressage selectors, who will represent Great Britain out at this year’s World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina (USA), 11 - 23 September 2018. The announced squad is (in alphabetical order); Natasha Baker MBE , grade III, from Uxbridge, Middlesex, with the Mount St John Stud’s Mount St John Diva Dannebrog (pictured) Erin Orford , grade III, from High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, with Annabel Whittet’s Dior Sir Lee Pearson , grade II, from Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, with his and Mr and Mrs D Pearson’s Styletta Sophie Wells MBE , grade V, from Newark, Nottinghamshire, with Charlotte Hogg’s C Fatal Attraction Selected reserves (in alphabetical order); Suzanna Hext , grade II, from Gloucestershire, with the Lady Joseph Trust and Henrietta Cheetham’s LJT Enggaards Solitaire Isobelle Palmer , grade IV, from West Yorkshire, with Mrs N Wells and Sophie Wells’ Touchdown M Sophie Wells MBE , grade V, with Jackie and Neil Walker, Valerie Woolford and her own Gladstone Georgia Wilson , grade II, from Conwy, with her own Midnight Para-Dressage Performance Manager, Sarah Armstrong comments; “The strength and depth in the combinations available for WEG 2018 gave our selectors a strong base to select from. I am delighted for the selected athletes; the team is a combination of experience – from the human athletes, and it’s really exciting to see new equine athletes coming through to compete at their first World Equestrian Games. “The squad in its entirety have worked incredibly hard in 2017/18 and with the support of their home teams, the World Class Programme practitioner team and our new coaching structure; I know that the four selected athletes will be best prepared to deliver personal bests in an increasingly competitive environment.” British Dressage Chief Executive, Jason Brautigam added; “It’s great to see Erin cement her place in the team after her debut in Gothenburg last year, as well as welcome both Lee and Natasha back with their new rides. Their experience, along with Sophie’s leadership and cool head, makes this quartet a very exciting prospect and we wish them all the very best of luck in Tryon.” Natasha Baker : “I’m so, so proud of everything we’ve achieved this year. Massive thanks to Mount St John, and to mum and Lisa and my whole team for their support; to build such a partnership in such a short space of time, I just can’t believe it. I’m so grateful to Emma and massively excited for WEG. “She is the perfect horse for me, I knew it the first time I rode her she was perfect, it was love at first ride. It will only be her second time abroad with me, and it’ll be my first time competing in America, but I’m just going to go out there and enjoy it and do my best.” Erin Orford : “It’s a huge honour to get the call up, I’m incredibly proud of the progress that Dior has made this year and although it’s what we’ve been working towards it’s still a huge relief and feels a bit surreal to have actually made the team. “I’m incredibly grateful to Dior’s owner, Annabel, for giving me such a talented horse to ride; to my trainer, Stephen Moore whose support has enabled us to bring out the best in her, as well as my family and sponsors who’ve been a big part of this journey. I’m really excited to make my WEG debut – I hope that I will be able to show her at her best and deliver some strong performances in Tryon.” Lee Pearson : “It’s really special - it hasn’t quite sunk in yet. Having a quiet year last year, and coming back and being selected, I’m just thrilled and honoured. I always thought that she was special; it’s amazing to be on a home-bred horse, and definitely more special, but it does add to the nerves as well.” Sophie Wells : “I’m really chuffed. To be going on a horse you’ve had since they were young is going to be really special. For Jorge [C Fatal Attraction] to be selected for his first world championships is just fantastic, and it’s going to be my third; it’s less daunting as I was out in Kentucky for the world’s in 2010. I’m so pleased for Charlotte and we can hopefully go and do some good performances. To have William as a reserve as well is just amazing; it’s going to be a busy summer.” Equestrian Team GBR is supported by the UK Sport National Lottery funded World Class Programme; the British teams are very grateful to the support they receive from the British Equestrian Federation Fund and official partners Dodson and Horrell, Equi-Trek, FALPRO England, Musto, NAF and Point Two.
Tuesday, July 24

Awesome Aachen

Thousands of fans flocked to the German equine mecca of Aachen for the 2018 instalment of the CHIO World Equestrian Festival last week. Showjumping, driving, eventing, vaulting and of course dressage fill nine days of action on the world renowned showground and this year, many nations were using it for selection for the World Equestrian Games in Tryon, USA this September. The dressage proved to be a battle royale between the home nation and Team USA who’d sent over what looks to be their squad for WEG for a final test. Day one’s Grand Prix was a tight affair under the beaming sun in the Deutsche Bank Stadion. Helen Langehanenberg, back in action a matter of weeks after the birth of her second daughter, set the early pace for the home team with 77.03% and lead until the last group of riders for each of the teams of Spain, USA, Denmark, the Netherlands, Sweden and Germany. Laura Graves was the final US rider to go with the seasoned Verdades, or ‘Diddy’, and they were spectacular to earn 80.6% to take the lead while the next rider, Cathrine Dufour for Denmark posted 78.49% to take second. In the team competition, the USA somewhat surprised the hosts with a four top class performances to give a total of 231.98 while Germany were some three marks adrift after an uncharacteristic performance by team talisman Isabell Werth with Emilo. The two British riders who flew the flag in the CDIO as individuals were very competitive on day one. Riding the Bechtolsheimer’s Rubin al Asad, now a sprightly 15 year old, Lara Butler (pictured) posted one of her best scores with ‘Rufus’ of 72.64% to finish an eventual 16th. Just two horses later, Emile Faurie rode Elena Knyaginicheva’s Delatio, back to competition after a six month minor injury break. A costly mistake in the one-time changes, worth double marks, was the only blip and 73.12% for 13th was the score. On to Saturday’s GP Special and the battle for the team honours went into overdrive. The German star performer was back to her majestic best and 79.12% from Isabell Werth and Emilio 107 put the home team on a course for victory. Helen Langehanenberg, added a further 79%+ score with Damsey and 76.25% from Dorothee Schneider and Sammy Davis Jr sealed the Nations Cup victory after they turned a three mark deficit to a five point victory margin over the US with Denmark taking the final podium spot in third. Once again, our British riders were in the mix, both with top 14 finishes. Emile was 13th again but with a slightly improved score in the more technically demanding test with Delatio. Lara and Rufus thrilled with a 72.93% to finish 14th, bettering her GP place by two. With the team honours settled, it was on to the dressage showpiece, the Freestyle on the final day of the Festival. Team tactics out the window, it was full out for the €43,000 first prize. Laura Graves and Diddy, dancing for the first time since the FEI World Cup Finals in April, were the fir