Yuri Manser wins King George V Gold Cup

Brazilian rider Yuri Mansur secured a remarkable triple of wins this week when claiming the honours in the €200,000 Longines King George V Gold Cup at Hickstead yesterday.

The victory came just two days after Yuri was part of the winning team in Friday’s FEI Nations Cup™ leg. Both wins came courtesy of the 11-year-old mare Babylotte.
Yuri and his horse were on phenomenal form, producing the only double clear round of the competition to lift the historic trophy.

There were 46 starters in today’s King George, which forms the finale to the CSIO5* Longines Royal International Horse Show. Course designer Kelvin Bywater set a long, difficult track with 12 fences and 16 jumping efforts, and only four managed to jump clear in round one.

Yuri Manser winning the King George Photo: Craig Payne

British hopes lay with Keith Shore, who was first to go in the jump-off. He set the pace with a time of 57.63sec on Mystic Hurricane, but one fence down left the door open for his three rivals to go ahead.

Germany’s Patrick Stühlmeyer on Lacan 2 finished on eight faults to finish an eventual fourth, while the Netherlands’ Ruben Romp (Audi’s Teavanta II C Z) also knocked one fence down, but shaved more than three seconds off Keith’s time to take the lead.

Mansur was last to go in the jump-off, and he was able to concentrate on netting a clear round – which he duly did, in a time of 57.52sec.

“For me it was an amazing experience – this mare, I just have no words for her,” said an overwhelmed Yuri. “When I bought her she was jumping in 1.45m classes and hated to jump on grass, but since then she’s more than proven herself.”

“My strategy today was to go the same speed as Ruben, but after I made the turn to fence seven, then I said to myself I have to stay clear, and that’s what I did. It’s a dream for me, I can’t believe it.”

It’s been a superb week for Yuri. As well as his win in the FEI Nations Cup of Great Britain, presented by Longines, the 37-year-old Holland-based rider also won the first international class of the show, the Bunn Leisure Vase.

Third placed Keith Shore was philosophical after coming close to being the first British winner of the Longines King George V Gold Cup since Ben Maher in 2010.
“I don’t really think he should have had a fence down to be honest, but that’s horses and they do. It was only last night I knew I was going to jump in the class so to come third is very good,” he said.

Earlier , Robert Whitaker rode out the winner of the Royal International Accumulator. Riding the eight-year-old stallion Noble Warrior, Robert produced a blisteringly quick time of 43.13sec. Second placed Jur Vrieling (Zypern III) was just two-hundredths of a second in arrears in what was the closest speed class of the week. France’s Benoit Cernin was third (43.26sec), with Robert’s father John Whitaker fourth in a time of 44.29sec.

“He’s always jumped well but the last couple of months he’s really stepped up,” said Robert. “Today he’s shown how good he is.”

Yesterday was the final day of competition at the Longines Royal International Horse Show, and the final day of the international showjumping season at Hickstead.

This Thursday (August 3) will see hundreds of horses and ponies return to the All England Jumping Course for the annual Hurstpierpoint College National Schools and Pony Club Jumping Championships, which has finals for Junior Schools, Senior Schools and branches of the Pony Club.

Harriet Nutall takes Queen Elizabeth Cup

Harriet Nuttall headed a female one-two in the Queen Elizabeth II Cup, a prestigious national championship held on Ladies’ Day at Hickstead.

Harriet has been one of Hickstead’s most consistent performers in recent years, and in June she finished runner-up in the Hickstead Derby for the third consecutive year. But today she took her place at the head of the line-up, scoring her first international win here since taking the British Speed Derby in 2016.

“This win ranks alongside the Speed Derby,” said Harriet. “I’ve never been on a horse where I’ve been in contention for the Queens Cup, this was the first time I felt I could win it.”

The Queen Elizabeth II Cup used to be an international championship open to women riders only, but in 2008 it was changed to become a national final open to the highest-ranked male and female riders in the British Showjumping rankings.

Eight of the country’s brightest talents went through to the jump-off in today’s class, with Harriet making the most of being drawn last to go. Riding Galway Bay Jed, Harriet took every calculated risk and galloped to the last to finish on a time of 32.64sec, nearly 1.5sec ahead of her nearest rival.

“He’s jumping very well at this level and he’s really shown it today. He’s a bit of an easier ride now than he used to be – he was a bit strong to start with and would run off after a fence,” she said of the nine-year-old Irish gelding.

Harriet Nuttall on her way to victory
Photo: Craig Payne

Harriet will be back in the International Arena today when she rides her Al Shira’aa Derby runner-up A Touch Imperious in the Longines King George V Gold Cup.

In second place in today’s Queen’s Cup were Holly Smith and Quality Old Joker, another pair that came close to winning the Al Shira’aa Derby when finishing third in this year’s renewal. Leicestershire-based Holly broke her leg in February but is back on top form, having also won Hickstead’s Bunn Leisure Derby Tankard in June.

Drawn second last to go in the Queen’s Cup, Holly posted a time of 34.10sec to go ahead of Ireland’s Michael Duffy – but her lead was to be short-lived with Harriet going on to better her time.

Lady riders featured heavily in yesterday’s results, with Swiss rider Nadja Peter Steiner taking this morning’s Bunn Leisure Salver with the 13-year-old mare Celeste 26, ahead of the USA’s Lauren Hough on Quantas 15.

“I’ve had some good placings here at Hickstead, but this is my first win so it’s really fantastic. I’m so happy with both of my horses, we’ll go home now and they can both have a little break,” said Nadja.

In the British Speed Classic, Joe Whitaker and Lavarno were the clear winners, finishing more than 2.5sec ahead of the reigning Al Shira’aa Derby champion Nigel Coupe.

“Winning in that atmosphere in the big ring, it’s what you dream of and what you work hard for,” said Joe. “I won the under-25 final here back in 2012, but this would be my most prestigious win.”

In the showing classes, Oxfordshire’s Jo Bates had a day to remember when winning the Brereton Supreme Hack Championship with Suzanna Welby’s seven-year-old Elusive.

“I’ve had many placings and reserves but this is my first Supreme here,” said Jo. “This horse really is special, he just loves the big occasion. He has such charisma and star quality.”

Some of the horse world’s smallest champions were on show today in the BMHS Supreme Miniature Horse Championship. The overall winner was Chichester’s Alison Parsons with Spotlight Bo Diddly.

“He’s won his class here three times but this is his first time as Supreme Champion,” said Alison. “To win Supreme here at Hickstead is just the absolute tops – it’s overwhelming. It’s the one big title he hadn’t won so it really is incredible.”

Tomorrow the Longines Royal International Horse Show reaches its conclusion, marking the end of Hickstead’s international season.

The showjumping highlights of the final day include the €200,000 Longines King George V Gold Cup and the Royal International Accumulator. All of the week’s showing champions will come forward to contest The British Horse Society Supreme Ridden Horse Championship and the de la Hey Family Supreme Pony Championship.

There will also be a special presentation to Olympic gold medallist Nick Skelton, in recognition of his amazing achievements here at Hickstead.

Brazil wins Hickstead FEI Nations Cup

The Brazilian showjumping team made history yesterday at Hickstead when lifting the Edward, Prince of Wales Trophy for the first time. Brazil had never won the FEI Nations Cup™ of Great Britain presented by Longines, but were the clear winners of this two-round 2017 showjumping class, winning by an impressive margin of 10 faults.

The winning team got off to a strong start in round one, with Marlon Modolo Zanotelli (Sirene de La Motte) and Pedro Veniss (For Felicila) producing clears while Pedro Junqueira Muylaert (Prince Royal Z Mfs) knocked just one fence down. After discounting Yuri Mansur’s 12-faults in round one, Brazil posted a team total of four faults to lie second behind Germany on zero faults.

At the end of round one, Switzerland were third with eight faults, while less than two fences separated Great Britain, Ireland, The Netherlands and France. Spain had a day to forget, clocking up 23 faults in round one and a further 28 faults in round two, leaving them in eighth place.

Nor did things go to plan in the second round for the reigning champions, with last year’s victors Germany dropping right out of contention to finish an eventual seventh. But Brazil – who impressed in the showjumping competition at their home Olympic Games last summer – were even stronger in round two, producing three clear rounds so that their final rider didn’t even have to jump for the team to win.

Brazilian team celebrates Nations Cup Win Photo: Craig Payne

“I think everybody did a great job. To win at Hickstead is something special,” said Pedro Veniss. His team mate Marlon Modolo Zanotelli added: “It’s a pleasure to ride with those guys, we’ve know each other for so long.”

Yuri Mansur, who was the discount score in round one but went clear in round two on Babylotte, is having a good week at Hickstead, having already won yesterday’s Bunn Leisure Vase on Inferno. “I feel like in the first round something was wrong because Babylotte didn’t jump so well, but then in the second round she did well. I could really feel the difference, and she was feeling much better,” he said.

Three clears from the Dutch riders saw them shoot up the leaderboard to second place with 14 faults, ahead of the Swiss riders on 16 faults and Ireland on 17 faults. Great Britain, who haven’t won their home Nations Cup leg since 2010, were fifth on 20 faults just ahead of France on 21.

William Whitaker was the strongest performer out of the British quartet today, collecting just one time fault in round one but leaving all fences standing with the 13-year-old stallion Utamaro D Ecaussines; while his uncle Michael Whitaker also produced two masterful rounds on Viking, ending with an unlucky four faults from round two.

A British rider did collect a win earlier in the day, with Guy Williams winning the Old Lodge 7&8 Year Old Championship with Vindalo. Ireland’s Daniel Coyle won the Bunn Leisure International Stakes with the 11-year-old Simba De La Roque.

For the second consecutive year, Allister Hood and Diamonds Are Forever won the Saracen Horse Feeds Supreme Riding Horse Championship. Diamonds Are Forever has remained unbeaten this season.
“He’s the epitome. He’s got quality, he’s got substance and he’s the most beautiful riding horse. The judge even said what a privilege it was to sit on a horse like him,” said Allister.

In the Charles Owen Supreme Working Hunter Championships, Cheshire-based Daniel Carroll and Red Why Salute took the honours. It was the heavyweight gelding’s first appearance at Hickstead.

Today’s feature class in the Queen Elizabeth II Cup, a national championship open to the highest-ranked riders in the UK, while the international stars will be back in action against the clock for the British Speed Classic.

GB eventing squad announced

The British Equestrian Federation has announced the UK Sport National Lottery funded eventing squad that will compete at the FEI European Championships in Strzegom, Poland (17 – 20 August 2017).

Tina Cook will travel to her eighth Europeans as the most experienced rider on the team and Rosalind Canter will make her championship debut.

Kristina Cook riding Elisabeth Murdoch and Keith Tyson’s Billy The Red

Five of the selected horses will make senior championship debuts whilst The Pebbles Syndicate’s Quicklook V will travel to her second consecutive major championship. The selected squad has been named by British Eventing selectors as (alphabetical order):

Rosalind Canter, 31, based in Lincolnshire, with Caroline Moore and her own Allstar B

Kristina (Tina) Cook, 46, based in West Sussex, with Elisabeth Murdoch and Keith Tyson’s Billy The Red

Piggy French, 36, based in Leicestershire, with Jayne McGivern’s Quarrycrest Echo

Gemma Tattersall, 32, based in West Sussex, with Pebbles Syndicate’s Quicklook V

Gemma Tattersall competing with Chico Bella

Oliver Townend, 34, based in Shropshire, with Angela Hislop’s Cooley SRS

Nicola Wilson, 40, based in North Yorkshire, with James and Jo Lambert’s Bulana

Tina is also selected with Pip Wates, Ailsa Wates and Equine Aqua Training’s Calvino II as a direct reserve.

The final team of four and two individuals will be announced on arrival in Strzegom.

First and second reserves are (in numerical order):

Sarah Cohen, 43, based in Leicestershire, with Preci-Spark Ltd and Elizabeth Jones’s Treason

Alexander Bragg, 36, based in Somerset, with Sally Ellicot’s Zagreb

Performance Manager, Richard Waygood MBE commented: “I am very excited about this year’s Europeans. We have a strong squad who are all up for the challenge and willing to fight every inch of the way.

“The selectors have had their work cut out as there has been quality and depth to choose from.  I am equally excited for the owners who have all shown great commitment in making their horses available for the Championships.

“We are only able to deliver at this level thanks to our backing from the UK Sport National Lottery funded World Class Programme and our sponsors.”

British Eventing Chief Executive, David Holmes said: “The British Eventing senior selectors have picked an exciting squad for the 2017 European Eventing Championships; combining both experience and current form. It is great to see new talent coming through with Ros Canter and five of the horses making their senior championship debut. There have been some impressive results from British riders this year, which will have made the decision for selectors very tough – and it is also encouraging to see such strength in our British combinations.

“Thank you in particular to the owners who have made their horses available and to the World Class staff and support teams – we wish Dickie and Chris the very best of luck in Poland at their first Championships in charge of the British squad.”

Paul Tapner wins Eventers’ Challenge

Australia’s Paul Tapner secured his first win in the International Arena at Hickstead yesterday when claiming the honours in the MS Amlin Eventers’ Challenge.

The popular Wiltshire-based event rider produced a perfectly timed round to win on board Bonza King of Rouges. His time of 127.75sec was enough to take the title ahead of Britain’s Abi Walters and Perfick Miss Amber (128.37sec). In third was Irish Olympic rider Joseph Murphy and his London 2012 horse Electric Cruise, finishing just behind Walters with a time of 128.64sec.

Speaking at the press conference afterwards, Paul said that the MS Amlin Eventers’ Challenge is always a class he enjoys doing. “When you’re sat on a horse like that who is very careful, brave and fast, you’d expect him to excel in a class like this,” he said.

Tapner, the winner of Badminton in 2010, announced a change in career direction last year, much to the surprise of the eventing community. “Everybody is confused that I’m not a professional event rider any more – I’m now an amateur elite event rider,” he explained. “My full-time job is being the digital and technology manager for the Event Rider Masters series. That’s my day job now and I do my riding around that.”

Paul Tapner on his wway to victory
Photo: Sean Haydn

Paul didn’t have the best of preparations for this class. He was on track to win an Advanced class at Aston-Le-Walls horse trials last week when he had a tack malfunction. “Bonza looked like he was going to win until his bit broke in two and I was careering flat out to a fence. Thankfully he pulled up to a halt without any further incident.”

Aside from the top three, only two other riders from the field of 21 managed to produce clear rounds – Britain’s Georgie Strang (Cooley Earl) in fifth and Jeanette Brakewell (Forever Red) in sixth. Last to go was Britain’s Alexander Bragg, who had an unlucky 8sec to add to his time after knocking two fences down, which cost him the win but was good enough to put him in fourth place.

Ireland’s Austin O’Connor was eliminated after taking a tumble at the Irish Bank, while Britain’s Pippa Funnell was desperately unlucky to fall at the final fence just yards from the finish line, having posted one of the fastest rounds of the day. Fortunately, both Pippa and her Rio 2016 ride Billy The Biz were back on their feet following the fall.

“It was a thrilling competition to watch and we were delighted to see a number of our clients’ horses go so well,” said David Ashby, Managing Director of MS Amlin. “Congratulations to the winning combination.  Paul rode a superb round, and we hope to see him competing here again next year.”

Earlier this afternoon, the USA’s Lauren Hough took the honours in the Bunn Leisure Trophy, riding the 12-year-old mare Adare.

Lauren is based in the UK for eight months of the year at her partner Captain Mark Phillips’ yard in Gatcombe. “I kept up a comfortable pace without going too hard to keep the horse fresh for [the Longines King George V Gold Cup on] Sunday; I didn’t take every risk,” said Lauren, who was pleased to get a win under her belt on the first day of international competition. “It’s good preparation for Sunday and I’m feeling fairly confident – you obviously need a bit of luck, too,” she said.

The first international class of the week was this morning’s Bunn Leisure Vase, which was won by Brazilian rider Yuri Mansur, who is based in the Netherlands. Riding the 10-year-old Inferno, Yuri saw off opposition from France’s Benoit Cernin in second.

“He’s amazing – he’s only been in my stable since last week, I’ve only had him for 10 days. This is actually our first class together!” said Yuri.

In the showing classes, the reigning British Horse Society Supreme Champion Jayne Ross secured her third consecutive Les and Nadia Edgar Supreme Hunter Championship with the mare Time 2 Reflect.

Tomorrow’s feature class is the FEI Nations Cup, a two-round team competition. Ireland have been drawn first to go, followed by Switzerland, Spain, Germany, France, Great Britain, Brazil and the Netherlands.

Tickets are available online or on the gate, while viewers can also watch the action live on Sky Sports or FEI TV.

New equine classes at Bank Holiday show

New equine classes and improved facilities feature at one of the largest equestrian events in the region – the 180th August Bank Holiday weekend Edenbridge and Oxted Agricultural Show. Entries are still being accepted for Showjumping classes – late jumping entries until two weeks before the Show with a 25% entry surcharge.

It takes place on Bank Holiday Sunday and Monday, August 27 and 28 at Ardenrun Showground, Ray Lane, Near Lingfield, Surrey RH7 6LL.

During last year the organisers canvassed opinions from competitors to understand how to improve the Show for riders, horses and owners. After discussions with British Showjumping and support from local show centres, an exciting new main ring qualifier from Ring 2 has been introduced – the Harwoods Landrover Knockout.

This qualifies the first eight male and eight female riders for a knock-out tournament where they will compete two at a time over separate courses simultaneously. In addition, open classes linked to British Novice, Discovery, Newcomers and Foxhunter classes have been added to the 2017 schedule.

Show Jumping is a major feature of this show

The horse-walk has been extended and all the warm-up areas have been enlarged in the lorry park, Main ring and ring 2. Provision has also been made for hard ground with watering and aggravator machinery to be available if required.

Details of unaffiliated classes on Bank Holiday Monday which will appeal to both local riders and Riding Clubs in the area are all in the equine schedule on the website together with entry forms, online entry facility and news of activities around the Ardenrun Showground near Lingfield RH7 6LL (6 miles south of J6, M25) .

 This show is a huge equestrian extravaganza with six competition rings, more than 100 classes and specialist shops.

Hackneys will also be competing at the show

The bonus is that it also offers other family members a wide range of activities and spectacles to suit all ages and interests. Attractions this year include the Shetland Pony Grand National, British Champion BMX & Mountain Bike stunt displays, tunnel racing – ferrets vs children, Meet the Meerkats, a Children’s Cookalong and The Ardenrun Challenge – teams with horses and dogs competing to build and go over obstacles showing how well people and animals can work together.

Advance ticket holders, including earlybird saver ticket holders, will be fast-tracked through the ticket queues this year for the first time. All under 16s go free with an adult ticket holder in the party. Details of reduced price tickets and also membership packages which allow entry to the members’ enclosure are at www.edenbridge-show.co.uk.

Lauren wins Hickstead championship

Southampton-based Lauren Edwards, 22, had her first win at Hickstead for more than a decade when she claimed today’s final class, the Winter Grades B & C Championship.

She saw off opposition from several of Britain’s leading national riders, with 15 horses going through to the jump-off. But none could beat the time of 38.04sec set by Lauren with the eight-year-old grey mare Ella Sandra G.

Lauren Edwards winning at Hickstead
Photo: Sian Hayden

“I think she’ll be a really good horse, though she’s a typical sensitive mare,” said Lauren. “She’s got all the ingredients to make a top horse; she’s got a lot of jump and she just wants to please you.”

Lauren has not had a win at Hickstead since the days of competing on 128cm ponies.

“I’ve jumped here a few times and had placings, but my last win was about 12 years ago when I was jumping in pony classes so it’s really good to be back with a famous blue sash.”

In second place was Rachel Connor on Fantastic, ahead of third-placed Jay Halim on Jaque Mate.

Other British Showjumping Winter Finals held at Hickstead today included the SEIB Winter Novice Final, which went to Rebecca Marsh and Predator Ridge.

In the Winter 128cms Championship, Cheshire-based Olivia Banks and Remington Steal had an emotional win. “I was crying before I went in because I was so nervous! I fell off at my last show,” said Olivia.

Blackburn’s Madison Jamieson and Flavia won the Oakley Coachbuilders Winter Grade JC Championship, while Brentwood-based Claudia Moore and My Bugsy Malone won the Winter 138cms Championship. My Bugsy Malone is a veteran showjumping pony at the impressive age of 25 years old.

“It’s amazing that he’s still going strong at that age. He’s very lovely, he’s always bubbly, he’s never down, he just keeps pushing and pushing. Most ponies retire by around 20 because they don’t want to do it anymore but my pony absolutely loves it,” said Claudia.

In the showing classes, 16-year-old Josephine Ready won the Leeman Family Supreme Show Hunter Pony Championship riding Wolferlow Esperanto. The pair previously competed at Medium-level dressage.

The pure-bred ridden Arabian championship went to Ben Payne on Ben Hester’s Sameon Marouhk.

The highlight of Thursday’s action at the Longines Royal International Horse Show is the MS Amlin Eventers’ Challenge, when a number of top event riders will complete a timed course of cross-country jumps in Hickstead’s famous International Arena.

Tickets are available online or on the gate, while viewers can also watch via the livestream at Hickstead.TV.

Historic RI trophies to be won

Having celebrated its centenary in 2007, this week’s Longines Royal International Horse Show (26-30 July) is 110 years old this summer, making it one of the oldest horse shows in the world.
The Longines Royal International Horse Show has been held at Hickstead in West Sussex every year since 1992. But the history of its most famous trophies dates back long before.

On Sunday July 30, the best showjumpers in the world will compete for honours in the Longines King George V Gold Cup. The winner will lift the King George V Trophy, a stunning solid gold depiction of the George and the Dragon fable – which is replicated on the official logo for the All England Jumping Course. The trophy is so valuable that it is kept under lock and key in London and has its own security guard, so the riders don’t get to take it home and put it on their mantelpiece – which is probably a relief, due to the high costs of including it in their home insurance policy.

Historic Hickstead Trophy- Longines King George V Gold Cup
Photo: George Gunn

It was commissioned in 1911 by King George V, the patron of the show, and was won that year by Russia’s Dimitri d’Exe on Piccolo. In 1939, the last year the show was held before the outbreak of the Second World War, it was won by Italian rider Conte Alessandro Bettoni-Cazzago. The trophy remained on Italian soil throughout the war – the Conte was said to be so concerned about the welfare of the trophy that he had it buried in the grounds of his villa. It was retrieved after the war and returned to Britain, and has never left these shores since.

King George V’s granddaughter first presented another of Hickstead’s famous trophies back in 1949 when she was still known as Princess Elizabeth. The Queen Elizabeth II Cup was initially open to females only, and for more than half a century it was won by many of the world’s top lady riders.

In 2008 the rules were changed so that both sexes could compete for the King George and the Queen’s Cup. Since then the Queen Elizabeth II Cup has been open to the leading riders on the national rankings – a change fully approved by Her Majesty The Queen and the British Horse Society, who own the trophy. The competition will take place this year on the Saturday of the Longines Royal International Horse Show, of which Queen Elizabeth II is the official patron.

Queen Elizabeth Cup

Keeping up with the Royal theme, the teams in Friday afternoon’s FEI Nations Cup™ of Great Britain will compete for The Edward, Prince of Wales Cup.  This team competition began in 1929 when Great Britain won on home turf. The Brits have won a further 30 times in the years since, but have not been victorious at Hickstead since 2010.

While Hickstead is best known for showjumping, showing is also a huge part of its events, with thousands of the best show horses and ponies competing at Hickstead each year. Those that win their respective classes go through to their division championships, and the winners of these qualify for Sunday afternoon’s British Horse Society Supreme Ridden Horse Championship and the De La Hey Family Supreme Pony Championship.

The winner of the Supreme Horse final will lift the Winston Churchill Cup, a trophy honouring the British Prime Minister, while the Supreme Pony winner is presented with the Dorian Williams Trophy, given in memory of the presenter and commentator whose voice was synonymous with equestrian sport.

Last year’s supreme winners were Jayne Ross on the hunter mare Time 2 Reflect, and Lulu Farmbrough on the pony Tambrook My Destiny. In the showjumping, Germany were the victors in the FEI Nations Cup; Ireland’s David Simpson won the Queen Elizabeth II Cup while his compatriot Billy Twomey won the Longines King George V Gold Cup. Next week, we’ll discover who will have won Hickstead’s most famous classes for this year, and which riders will be lucky enough to lift some of the most historic trophies in equestrian sport.

Tickets are available online at www.hickstead.co.uk.

GB Gold in Young Rider and Junior European eventing

Amazing performances from the British Junior and Young Riders at the 2017 European Eventing Championships saw the up and coming eventing stars return this week from Millstreet, Ireland, with an individual champion and two medal winning teams.

Juniors: A fantastic effort from the Racesafe British Juniors in the final show jumping phase meant they finished with the team silver medal – 11.5 penalties behind gold medallist Germany and a huge 33 penalties ahead of France in bronze. Bubby Upton led from pillar to post in the individual competition; adding just two time faults from the show jumping to her exceptional dressage score of 23.9 she took individual gold on Rachel Upton’s Eros DHI.

The final Junior team top three results were as follows:

Gold – Germany 95.2
Silver – GBR 106.7
Bronze – France 140.0

Bubby Uptton celebrates her goldmedal performance Photo: Adam Fanshaw

Individually the Racesafe British Squad finished as follows (* denotes team member):

Gold – Bubby Upton* 18 from Suffolk, with Mrs Rachel Upton’s eight year old gelding Eros DHI
Fifth – Phoebe Locke* 17 from Somerset, with her own and Miss Jamie-lee Day’s nine year old gelding Union Fortunus
Seventh – Richard Coney*18 from Lincolnshire, with his own nine year old gelding Kananaskis
21st – Sasha Hargreaves 17 from Worcestershire, riding her own 14 year old gelding Strike A Pose
26th – Imogen White*18 from Warwickshire, with her own 13 year old gelding Emill
41st – Holly Needham 17 from Worcestershire, riding her own 14 year old gelding Strike A Pose

Young Riders
An unfortunate withdrawal after the second horse inspection for Ireland’s Susie Berry meant that Alex Kennedy, who was Britain’s highest placed rider after cross country in third, headed into the show jumping in second position. Adding nothing to her 41.3 penalty dressage score she held on to her position to take the individual silver medal on Mr and Mrs John and Andrea Kennedy’s Lissangle Cavaletto B.

After the dressage leader, GB’s Sam Ecroyd, unfortunately parted company from Tullaher Sunrise in the cross country, the remaining five British squad riders all finished with a top twenty result and the team held their own in a very close finish in the final team standings to take the bronze medal.

Gold – Germany 133.7
Silver – The Netherlands 135.9
Bronze – Great Britain 143.3

Individual placings, (* denotes team member):

Silver – Alex Kennedy*, 20 from Somerset, on Mr and Mrs John and Andrea Kennedy’s 12 year old gelding Lissangle Cavaletto B
9th – Lizzie Baugh, 19 from Nottinghamshire, and her own nine year old gelding, Quarry Man
11th – Katie Bleloch*, 20 from Warwickshire, with her own 11 year old gelding, Bulano
13th – Felicity Collins*, 19 from East Sussex, and Ms Vicky Collins, Mrs Avrina Milton’s eight year old gelding RSH Contend Or
16th – Libby Seed, 19 from Wiltshire, with Carolyn Bate’s 11 year old stallion, Philanderer II
Sam Ecroyd*, 20 from Flintshire and Mrs Penelope Ecroyd’s nine year old gelding Tullaher Sunrise were unfortunately eliminated after a fall at the second water complex in the cross country phase; neither horse or rider were hurt.

Polo Gold Cup hat-trick for Foxes

An incredible Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup final was played  between last year’s Gold Cup champions, King Power Foxes, and the El Remanso team of four British professionals who had captured the hearts of the local crowd through the British Open Tournament, writes Liz Higgins.

Taking the place of ‘Top’ Srivaddhanaprabha in the King Power team was 1 goal player Hugo Taylor, with James ‘Jimbo’ Fewster at 2, and the mighty combination of the10 goal Pieres brothers Gonzalito at 3 and Facundo at Back. El Remanso played the tried-and-trusted line-up of their 2016 side with Charlie Hanbury at the front door, Ollie Cudmore (5 goals) at 2, and 6 goal players James Beim and James Harper at 3 and Back.

Action was the name of the game for most of the match Photo: John Periam  01243 584718

El Remanso made a great start with Charlie Hanbury first to score. The English quartet dominated early, shutting down the two Pieres superstars while sending their own players out front to score. However, the boys in blue cottoned on early to this tactic and were able to undermine it quickly, evening the score at 3-3 by the close of the second chukka. Chukka 3 was the turning point with no points on the scoreboard for El Remanso and King Power putting themselves firmly in the driving seat, a splendid field goal from Jimbo Fewster, who played the match of his life, contributing to King Power Foxes 6-3 lead by half time.

Jimbo Brewster from King Power Foxes prepares for the final Photo: John Periam  01243 584718

Chukka 4 saw two more goals on the scoreboard for King Power, including a second beauty from Fewster, before James Harper added to El Remanso’s scoreline. A goal came from Facundo and the chukka ended with the Foxes five goals ahead on 9-4. El Remanso rallied in the fifth, James Beim scoring a field goal and Harper converting a 30 yard penalty. Facundo Pieres answered with the accurate conversion of a 60 yard penalty and a super field goal and it was left to Harper to follow his example and finish the chukka with a 60 yard shot through the posts and 11-7 to King Power Foxes on the scoreboard.

A final exciting chukka saw Jimbo Fewster contribute his third goal of the match and, when King Power Foxes were awarded a spot penalty, Gonzalito slipped the ball through the posts for the side’s 13th goal.

El Remanso won the ball from the throw-in, Harper sent a long ball down the field and Ollie Cudmore picked it up and scored but it was too little too late and King Power Foxes had stormed through the match to retain for a third year the title of British Open Champions on a score of 13-8.

Although the scoreline may not have reflected the closeness of the game, King Power proved to be too strong in the end and overpowered El Remanso in the second half. Facundo Pieres led the scoring with five goals while Jimbo Fewster playing in his first Gold Cup Final equalled Gonzalito Pieres in the goal-scoring stakes and was named Most Valuable Player. Everyone on the El Remanso side contributed to the score with at least one goal each.

King Power Foxes celebrate a great victory, holding the Gold Cup aloft  Photo:Clive Bennett 20170723 ©2017 CB_0321.CR2

Lila Pearson presented the Best Playing Pony award to New Chicago, owned and played by Gonzalito Pieres.

Zahra Kassim-Lakha of Jaeger-LeCoultre UK, presented the Most Valuable Player award to Jimbo Fewster and together with the Deputy CEO of Jaeger-LeCoultre,

Geoffroy Lefebvre, presented individual prizes to the El Remanso team. Specially engraved Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso watches were presented to the winning team by Geoffroy Lefebvre and Zahra Kassim-Lakha.

King Power Foxes and El Remanso after the Jaeger LeCoultre Gold Cup Final Photo copyright Clive Bennett Photography , www.polopictures.co.uk

Thierry Wallaert, Export Manager of Louis Roederer presented a Salmanazar of champagne, equivalent to 18 bottles, to the King Power Foxes’ captain Facundo Pieres.

Finally, Geoffroy Lefebvre of Jaeger-LeCoultre presented the coveted golden trophy to Facu, who hoisted it aloft in front of the King Power Foxes’ support team, clearly delighted that he and his brother had achieved a hat trick of wins on behalf of the Srivaddhanaprabha family.