Free Jump Season preview before racing at Plumpton’s next meeting

Plumpton Racecourse in Sussex is staging an At The Races November Raceday on Monday, November 4 when on of the attractions will be a free Jump Season Preview with former jockey Luke Harvey.

Plumpton's outstanding new winner's enclosure offers great view  for racegoers

Plumpton’s outstanding new winner’s enclosure offers great view for racegoers

This is sponsored by At The Races, and will discuss the 2013/14 Jump season. This will start at 11.30am in the Chasers Bar, so make sure you get there early to hear about the horses to follow for the season ahead from those in the know. Gates open at 10.30am.

The first race takes place at 12.50pm with the last at 4.05pm and admission prices of £16 on the day include a free programme and parking. Senior Concessions on the day with photo ID is £12 and those under 18 are free.

The meeting offers an exciting mix of competitive jump racing at one of the UK’s most picturesque small jumps tracks. There is also the chance to enjoy superb viewing facilities of the paddock and winner’s enclosure that have followed improvements during the summer break.



Kathy achieves outstanding results bringing on young show jumping horses

Professional show jumper Kathy Willard gains immense satisfaction from bringing on young show jumping horses, as well as teaching all levels of riders from her base at Henfield in West Sussex.

Kathy Willard and Summer Thunder in the main ring at Hickstead in September

Kathy Willard and her home-bred Summer Thunder in the main ring at Hickstead in September

She has competed in the sport since she was a youngster, going through the ranks of ponies to senior level, where she achieved notable successes with her own horse, Concordedor, and also Riaan, owned by her mother, at major Hickstead shows, as well as Arena Uk, Scope and Towerlands.

She also brought on Calvalac with great success, jumping her at Hickstead where the duo qualified for the Young Rider finals in the International Arena, finishing in third place in a hotly contested event. Calvalac was later sold to international show jumping rider Tracy Priest.

Kathy has made a name for herself with her ability to spot a good showjumping horse, and as well as Calvalac, she has achieved notable successes with her own Valencia C, Alonso N, Tiandra and Ludger II. Selecting promising youngsters is her speciality and she generally imports them Europe, taking them through the qualifying stages of competition before either selling them, like Calvalac, or keeping them for herself.

Kathy Willard with Alonso

Kathy Willard with Alonso. Photo by Luke R Gee, specialist equestrian photographer: Contact 07834467987

She is now thinking of selling Alonso, a 16.1hh grey eight-year-old by Caretino. He has been jumping 1.20/1.30 achieving multiple double clears, but Kathy feels it is time for someone to take him further, leaving her more time to concentrate on her main interests of bringing on her young horses and teaching young riders. Alonso qualified for the main ring in the Grade C final at the South of England Show this year, just missing out in the jump-off.

Kathy is currently bringing on two quality British-bred youngsters,  Hettie(Renkum Valetta) and Alfie(Thuderbreak), and is looking forward to seeing them progress in the 2014 season as four-year-olds. She has good cause to be exciting about their prospects. Her home-bred , four-year-old Summer Thunder, qualified for the main ring in the Four Year Old Championship at Hickstead’s September meeting this year. She is impeccably bred, by El-Thuder, out of Kathy’s own brood mare, Valencia C, who is a HeartbreakerxDarco mare.
“Hettie is not broken yet but has been jumping loose but I will be breaking her, ready to jump in January. Alfie is a full brother to Summer Thunder and also will be ready for January.  El Thuder is proving to be an outstanding stallion for three of his offspring were in the four-year-old championships at the All England Championships at Hickstead in September.

Summer Thunder did really well at the meeting to be one of 30 out of 90 to go through to the main ring, jumping well and showing a great attitude,” said Kathy.
Kathy will be aiming Hettie and Alfie for the four-year-old class at the same Hickstead championships next year, and Summer Thunder will compete in the five-year-old championships.

“This September Hickstead show is a great event because it enables young horses to have a chance to go in the main ring, and gain experience of one of the top three grass rings in the world. It is invaluable for young horses and that show will be the main aim for my trio of British breds next year. In the interim I am thinking of taking them to Millstreet in Cork, Ireland, which features loose show jumping for young horses and Discovery for four-year-olds. It would give them valuable experience without pressure,” she said.

Apart from bringing on her horses, Kathy is busy putting plenty back into the sport. She is a member of the British Showjumping Members’ Council and is highly respected for her teaching ability with young riders, in sessions both at Royal Leisure Centre, near Henfield, as well as at her base at Brookside Stables, Henfield,  locals schools and pony clubs.

Her stables are well established as a livery and training yard, where pupils find her teaching methods particularly easy to understand, and her approach is very down to earth.

She has vacancies for all types of liveries and horses of all levels. She still has Riaan there, who is now 20, and who in his time won £7,000 in prizemoney, jumped up to 140’s and qualified for both the Horse of the Year Show and the British Open. He has a home of for life at Brookside Stables.
Kathy can be contacted on 077738-553-775 .

South East RDA conference success- and Sally receives prestigious Tora Bray award

MORE than 80 members of the Riding for the Disabled Association from across the South East converged on the Haven Centre in Crawley Down for the region’s recent annual conference.

Speakers’ Group, left to right, Lindsay Correa, Chairman RDA South East Region, Corporal of the Horse, Tim Puddifoot, Household Cavalry, David Hamer, Co-ordinator for the World Class Development Para-Equestrian Dressage Programme, Sam Cooper, London Marathon Runner

Speakers’ Group, left to right, Lindsay Correa, Chairman RDA South East Region,  David Hamer, Co-ordinator for the World Class Development Para-Equestrian Dressage Programme, Corporal of the Horse, Tim Puddifoot, Household Cavalry, Sam Cooper, London Marathon Runner    Photograph by Joanna Sale

This year, delegates heard from two inspirational guest speakers with Tim Puddifoot, Corporal of the Horse for the Household Cavalry, whose topic was ‘Training the Military Horse’ and David Hamer, co-ordinator for the World Class Development Para-Equestrian Dressage Programme  who spoke about Training Opportunities for Talented Riders.

David Hamer outlined the selection process and training programmes behind the outstandingly successful para-equestrian dressage teams that continue to dominate the international arena post the Paralympic Games.  He said a  key element was the need to ‘learn how to win’ instead of first riders being taught how to lose.

David Hamer speaking at the conference. Photo: Joanna Sale

David Hamer speaking at the conference. Photo: Joanna Sale

“Once you have truly overcome your fear of losing, then you’ll win” he said. But  he also stressed that talent is not enough and he told of the host of other factors that help shape and contribute to a champion.

Tim Puddifoot gave an insight into the training programme required for a military horse and rider to meet the ceremonial duties of royal and state occasions. He ended with his top tips on winning a horse’s trust sufficiently to train it to lie down. This feat is now only used in displays, but dates back to when wars were fought on horseback and riders and horses had to hide themselves before an attack.

In addition, delegates heard from an informative panel which tackled the issue of fundraising. It featured representatives from the RDA’s South East corporate sponsor Cowan Architects, Sainsbury’s and RDA National Office.  As each RDA Group is run as a separate charity, fundraising is essential to finance the valuable work that they do on the ground or in the saddle.

Sal Atkinson, Head of Fundraising for RDA National Office, Joss Chamberlain, PR Ambassador Sainsbury’s, Phill Mumford, Managing Director, Cowan Architects (Sponsors of RDA South East Region.)

Sal Atkinson, Head of Fundraising for RDA National Office, Joss Chamberlain, PR Ambassador Sainsbury’s, Phill Mumford, Managing Director, Cowan Architects (Sponsors of RDA South East Region.)

Phillip Mumford, Managing Director of Cowan Architects, which sponsors the RDA across the region, suggested groups  should try to approach companies that already might have a natural synergy with them. He used Cowan Architects as an example, saying: “One of our particular specialties is in the care market, transforming living spaces for people with disabilities – so obviously we are a good match and readily committed to the RDA’s wonderfully inspiring work.”

Sally Pointing from Chichester RDA was awarded the coveted Tora Bray Perpetual Trophy for her tireless contribution to the running of the group that went ‘above and beyond’ the normal. Belinda Wilkins of Walberton, near Chichester, nominated Sally for the award, saying: “Sally has endless patience. She brings out the best in riders and inspires them to achieve. She never concentrates on what they can’t do but what they can do. She volunteered to help with the newly formed Chichester group nearly 30 years ago.

Sally Pointing of Chichester RDA receives the Tora Bray Award from

Sally Pointing of Chichester RDA receives the Tora Bray Award from Corporal of the Horse, Tim Puddifoot, Household Cavalry  Photo: Joanna Sale

“Sally ensures that every rider who wants ride with the Chichester Group is given a chance, no-one is turned away and the group has a very wide range of ages and abilities all enjoying the pleasure of riding. She bought and cared for Rosa, the Chichester RDA horse, transpporting her there and back for each session.

“Bella has now replaced Rosa, who has retired many years after receiving her long service record. Sally also transported Rosa to the Kingley Vale sessions for years. She has ensured the future of Chichester RDA by allowing youngsters to hold the reins and take the sessions. They in turn aim to copy her outstanding qualities as leader.”

There was also the opportunity at the conference  for delegates to meet runner Sam Cooper, who is raising funds for the region by competing for the first time in the London Marathon in April.

Brown Panther has settled in well in Australia ahead of Melbourne Cup

Brown Panther is reported to have settled in well in Australia in advance of his run in the Melbourne Cup .Owner Michael Owen  tweeted yesterday: “Latest bulletin on Brown Panther. Normal weight 507kg. Weights after flight 500kg. Current weight 508kg. Couldn’t be happier!”

Brown Panther in winning form

Brown Panther in winning form

Trained by Tom Dascombe, Brown Panther was an impressive winner of the Goodwood Cup this summer. The five-year-old missed the Irish St Leger because he was reported to have a temperature and connections were happy when he finished fifth in a Goodwood Listed race towards the end of September.

Dascombe declared himself happy with that race, saying it had been over an inadequate 10 furlongs and felt it put Brown Panther on course for the Melbourne Cup.

Michael Owen at Goodwood last month

Michael Owen at Goodwood last month

The horse, jointly owned by Michael Owen, had a satisfactory trip to Australia and connections said he will not have a prep outing in Australia. Instead he will go straight for the big race next Tuesday.

It has been confirmed that stable jockey Richard Kingscote, who was replaced by Kieren Fallon on Brown Panther for a brief period before regaining the ride, would be on board in Melbourne.

Dascombe said: “Richard (Kingscote) is going out to ride him.. We’re all looking forward to it.”

Tickets availabale now for the Totepool Southern National Raceday at Fontwell Park

FONTWELL Park racecourse will host its second richest race meeting of the year next month, when one of its key fixtures- the Totepool Southern National Raceday- takes place. The event is on Sunday November 17, when the first race is at 12.45pm and the last of the seven races is at 4pm.

Exciting action promised at Fontwell Park's  Southern National: Photo: JIm Simpson

Exciting action promised at Fontwell Park’s Southern National: Photo: JIm Simpson

Because of the importance of this race, Channel 4 Racing will be showing the feature race of the day at 1.50pm, which is run over three miles and four furlongs on the only figure of eight track in the country. /

Contenders from top stables as well as locally trained horses will be taking part in this popular fixture

This offers the chance to experience the excitement of jump racing at its best at close quarters. Gates will open at 10.30am. Go to to buy your tickets in advance.

Meanwhile the next fixture at this award-winningWest Sussex track is an Autumn Raceday on Friday November 8, with the first race at 1.10pm and the last at 4.10pm.

Chance to get involved in the fast-growing sport of pony racing

YOUNGSTERS who do not have their own ponies now have their chance to get involved in the fast-growing sport of pony racing. The British Racing School is taking applications for  12-week courses in its Pony Racing Academy.

Young riders who took part in pony races at a point to point this year

Young riders who took part in pony races at a point to point this year

It operates 12 week courses to enable those between 13 and 15 to gain first-class tuition on the school’s racing ponies over 12 consecutive Saturdays. The courses are open only to those children who do not have their own ponies and who would otherwise not have the chance to get involved in pony racing.

The sessions are at the headquarters in Newmarket from 8am-12 noon and apart from race-riding lessons, students are tutored on horse-management, feeding and every aspect of preparing a pony for the races.

Those who reach a suitable standard of riding by the end of the course may be offered the chance to take part in a pony race on one of the school’s ponies. Courses are free of charge and open to children who are already competent at walk, trot and canter and who weigh less than 60kg.

For information about future courses contact Sarah Hayde-Salgter on 01638 665103 or

Pony races take place regularly throughout the year at different racecourses throughout the country and prior to many point to point meeting and have produced many future jockeys.

Triple team success for West Sussex school in jumping championships

Farlington School at Horsham, West Sussex, has a good reputation for riding achievements and its riding teams had a successful day at Merrist Wood, Worplesdon this month, when taking part in the Cranleigh School Mini and Novice Qualifiers Show Jumping, and Jumping With Style (Arena Eventing).

One of the winning Farlington teams

One of the winning Farlington teams

This was an extremely competitive event and all Farlington riders, aged between 12 and 17, did exceptionally well, contributing to three good team wins.

The first victory was scored by the Novice show jumping team consisting of Ellie and Clarissa Burnell-Price, Sophia Page and Ella Heron. Ellie Burnell-Price also had the distinction of being top rider in the section from all schools competing, winning the Individual title.

The Mini Jumping With Style team also that section in the face of strong opposition, thanks to riders Clarissa Burnell-Price, Lily Heron and Sophia Page. Clarissa also came third individually.

The Novice Jumping With Style team also won with an excellent performance from Ellie Burnell-Price, Lily and Ella Heron and Sophia Page.
Louise Higson, Farlington’s Headmistress, said: “Farlington strongly supports the girls in their riding pursuits, which ensures that the squad is very competitive both at school competitions and on an individual basis. We are very proud of the girls’ achievements in this event.”

Easy wins spark off doubles for two trainers at Fontwell Park, while Orzare was unlucky

Winning was an easy matter for trainers Charlie Egerton and Emma Lavelle at Fontwell Park’s meeting yesterday, where they both came away with doubles instigated by appropriately named horses.

Shantou Magic completed  double for trainer Charlie Egerton (left)  pictured here with jockey Aidan Coleman and members of Owners for Owners

Shantou Magic completed double for trainer Charlie Egerton (left) pictured here with jockey Aidan Coleman and members of Owners for Owners

Easy Beesy won the opening Conditional Jockeys Hurdle Race with Gavin Sheehan in the saddle, continuing Charlie Egerton’s good run of form, while Aidan Colman completed the Egerton double with Shantou Magic in the Novice Hurdle Race.

The victory by Easy Bees was particularly pleasing for owner Sandra Roe, for she bred the horse and has a two-year-old and a foal in the pipeline. “This is the first racehorse I have bred and I am delighted with the result,” she said.

Shantou Magic won nicely enjoying the rain-soaked ground, and will probably appreciate a longer trip. He will be aimed at a similar race again before a likely step up to something like the Challow Hurdle or the Tolworth.

Kind of Easy took the 2m6f handicap chase for Emma Lavelle, but certainly made life difficult for himself with an horrific blunder at the ditch three from home when well clear. Fortunately Aidan Colman hung on grimly to pick him up and go on for victory.

Kind of Easy, trained by Emma Lavelle, with jockeey Aidan Coleman

Kind of Easy, trained by Emma Lavelle, with jockey Aidan Coleman

“I don’t want heart attacks like that again! He saw the ditch and just threw himself at it,” said his trainer afterwards. She completed her double with Red Rock, ridden by Gavin Sheehan in the 2m2f handicap chase later in the day.

It was good to see Double Chocolate starting to recapture his previous form when coming in second to Kind of Easy. Owned by Red and Black Racing, he ran a good race over a shorter distance than his optimum and is clearly benefiting from a change of scenery. He has been switched to Gloucestershire trainer John O’ Shea and could well be back in the winner’s spot next time over a longer trip.

One of the unluckiest horses of the day was Orzare, trained at Findon by Philip Hide and owned by Mr Byan Fry of Chichester. He contested the Beginners’ Steeplechase, and was badly hampered tackling the fourth flight from home, when Baby Shine fell in front of him.

Jockey Joshua Moore with trainer Philip Hide before the race

Jockey Joshua Moore with trainer Philip Hide before the race

The horse was going strongly at the time and mounting a challenge, but jockey Joshua Moore had no hope of staying in the saddle. Both horse and rider returned unhurt, but trainer, jockey and connections were left contemplating what might have been- and Orzare would almost certainly have been in the first three. The race was won by Black Thunder trained by Paul Nicholls

Owner Bryan Fry with Joshua Moore, and friends

Owner of Orazare, Bryan Fry with mud-splattered Joshua Moore, and friends, Ken Hilton and Mick Goodrum

He is a decent horse, and a former unbeaten juvenile hurdle winner for Gary Moore. Philip Hide has had a good year with his relatively small string, with both flat and jumps runners and Orzare is certainly one likely to add to his successes in the near future.

The testing ground sorted out the runners in fifth race, a handicap hurdle, when 20-1 shot Bally Legend, trained by Caroline Keevil and ridden by Ian Popham, came home ten lengths clear and only six of the ten runners finished,.

The final race of the day, the Mares’ Intermediate Open National Hunt Flat Race over 1m6f went to Rouauine Sauvage (6-1), trained by Anthony Honeyball and ridden by Rachael Green


Horse MOT day organised by West Sussex BHS committee was great success

AN MOT Day was organised by the West Sussex Committee of the British Horse Society recently at Albourne Equestrian Centre, Albourne, which proved to be both informative and extremely enjoyable for all taking part.  In mild Autumn weather four qualified professionals saw 10 equines and their owners/riders on a one to one basis.

The dental session

Horse dentist Chris Keate explains about a horse’s jaw, using a skull

Isabel Harker, a nutritionist from Spillers Feeds, weighed each horse on the portable weighbridge and gave nutritional guidance and a large goodie bag to everyone taking part in the day, so that everyone left fully informed about their equine’s dietary needs.

Weighing a horse at the special day

Isabel Harker supervises weighing a horse at the special day

Master Saddler, Ellie Martin of the Bespoke Saddlery Co. assessed  horses and advised their owners on saddle fitting. Good saddle fitting is vital for both a horse’s welfare and also to enable that it is able to perform to its best without any discomfort or ill effects.

Worming regimes were discussed by Camilla Woodward, MRCVS of the Arundel Equine Hospital, and she also outlined the benefits of worm egg counts according to circumstances. Westgate Laboratories generously donated a worm egg count kit and information pack for every owner and horse taking part in the day.

The West Sussex Committee of the BHS has thanked Albourne Equestrian Centre for hosting the event and to the professionals who gave so much to the day to enable it to be a success and is looking forward to running another day in 2014.

The committee will arrange another day for next year, to take place in the early summer at Brinsbury College.

These BHS MOT days for horses are being rolled out in different parts of the country. They are informative and educational, aiming to get to grass roots horse owners, and non BHS members are welcome and are encouraged to attend.

Moorcroft annual Plumpton raceday raised more than £45,000

Moorcroft Racehorse Welfare Centre is celebrating the enormous success of its 14th annual raceday at Plumpton this week, which raised more than £45,000 towards its running costs, and adding to the significant amount already achieved by this raceday since its inception,14 years ago.

Based at Huntingrove Stud in Slinfold, West Sussex, Moorcroft provides a temporary home for up to 28 horses and is one of the BHA’s accredited racehorse rehabilitation centres. The raceday contributes a vital 20 per cent towards its annual running costs, enabling it to continue its work of retraining and rehoming former racehorses.

Richard Philips in full swing auctioning dozens of lots

Richard Phillips in full swing auctioning dozens of lots

The annual charity lunch and auction in a marquee was a sell-out this year, attended by 350 people including VIPs from the world of racing. Trainer Richard Phillips conducted the annual auction of a wide range of donated prizes, ranging from a painting of top chaser Sprinter Sacre, which went under the hammer for £500, to a luxury stay for two at the Goring Hall Hotel, with a top bid £1,000. The auction, which also included different racing hospitality packages, achieved £13,320 towards the day’s total.

One of several racehorse paintings actioned at the lunch

One of several racehorse paintings actioned at the lunch

Moorcroft chairman Tim Fox told guests:” We have more than 35 horses at Moorcroft, and since the centre was established we have successfully placed more than 500 in new homes.”

He thanked centre manager Mary Henley-Smith and her team for their continued outstanding work at Moorcroft, adding:” The horses there have never looked better, winter and summer. All the races today have been sponsored, and as well as the second running of the Josh Gifford Memorial Trophy, we have the Shetland Pony Gold Cup, supported by the Andy Stewart Charitable Foundation, which is a highlight to support the afternoon, with a field of 12 runners.”

The Shetland Pony Gold Cup was won in style by Phoebe Anderson riding Budd’s Beauty, sporting Harwood Racing Club colours.

Winner of the pony race, Budd's Beauty ridden by Phoebe Anderson, wearing Harwood Racing club colours from Amanda Perrett's Coombeland Racing Stable

Winner of the pony race, Budd’s Beauty ridden by Phoebe Anderson, wearing Harwood Racing club colours from Amanda Perrett’s Coombelands Racing Stable

A good crowd enjoyed the subsequent racecard, where the opening Moorcroft Maiden Hurdle race was won by the Charlie Longsdon-trained Long Lunch ridden Noel Fehily.

Jockey Richard Johnson

Jockey Richard Johnson who won on board Upton Mead

Locally-trained Upton Mead, trained by Kevin Tork and ridden by Richard Johnson, won the Friends of Josh Gifford handicap chase, recapturing his earlier form of 2012 following a good summer break. Then  Hampshire trainer Patrick Chamings sprang a 10-1 surprise with easy winner Just When with Nico de Boinville on board won the Retirement Villages handicap hurdle race by 15 lengths.

Alan King’s odds in favourite Uxiandre, ridden by Tony McCoy, only just won the Gerald Karn-Smith Memorial Novices’ Limited Handicap Chase. There was only a neck between this horse and the useful De Blacksmith, sent out by Gary Moore and superbly ridden by son Jamie, at 11-2.

Another local win followed when Lewes trainer Sheena West sent out Cannon Fodder, ridden by Marc Goldstein to win the SIS Handicap Hurdle race for racing group The Cheapskates.

Trainer Sheena West and owners of      with jockey Marc Goldstein

Trainer Sheena West and owners of winning horse Cannon Fodder with jockey Marc Goldstein

The last two races on the card, the Novices Handicap Chase and Handicap Hurdle race went to Next Sensation, a 4-1 shot trained  by Michael Scudamore and ridden by Tom Scudamore and 20-1 winner Hopatina, trained  by Neil Mulholland and ridden by Michael Byrne.