There was world class show jumping going on all around the world. We’ve got coverage from three great ones: Hickstead (GBR), Brussels (Belgium) and the Hampton Classic (USA).
Phillip Miller and Caritiar Z have won the All England Grand Prix for the second year in a row, on the final day of the All England Jumping Championships at Hickstead.
Out of 66 starters in the show’s feature class, 10 produced clears in the first round to qualify for the jump-off. Lucy Townley, the second rider to go in round two, produced the first double clear in a speedy 58.96sec on Billy Fanta, and held the lead for some time.
It seemed that none of the subsequent riders would match her faultless round – and they included two former Hickstead Derby winners: Trevor Breen (who finished on eight faults with Loughnatousa WB) and Guy Williams (who retired after knocking the first two fences down on Carlson III).
But Phillip and the 16-year-old Caritiar Z, Hickstead Derby winners in 2013, shaved four seconds off Lucy’s time to take the lead. David Simpson, the reigning Queen Elizabeth II Cup winner, produced the fastest round of the day on Chessy 17 but four faults left him in fourth place behind Michael Duffy in third, with Lucy second and Phillip taking the title.
“He loves this ring – he is best on grass arenas, and the ground is perfect for him here,” said Phillip. “It’s always fabulous to win a class at Hickstead, and who knows how much longer he has left in show jumping,” he added, referring to the gelding’s age. “He’ll have two main aims for next season – the Derby and the Queen’s Cup. I really want to win the Queen’s, but I especially want to win it on ‘Carter’ because he’s got me where I am.”
Three other championships took place in the International Arena today. The Novice Championship went to Julie Draper and the mare Lauren Limite, who saw off 31 rivals to take the title. The 1.20m Open Championship, which was held in memory of Sarah Davidson (a former event rider and instructor who ran the yard at Stroods on the grounds of Hickstead for 25 years, and who sadly died last year), was won by Simon Crippen and Elstar.
The show concluded with the 1.30m Championship, which went to Zoe Adams and Satonamillion. These two are no strangers to winning at Hickstead, having claimed the honours in the Amlin Plus Eventing Grand Prix in 2013.
Today was the final day of the show jumping season at Hickstead.
For full results, click here.
Brussels Stephex Masters
Niels Bruynseels (BEL) concluded his fantastic weekend at the Brussels Stephex Masters in the best possible way when he went to the top in Sunday’s CSI5* € 300 000 Rolex Grand Prix. After a win in Friday night’s Top Sport Flandres Prize, Niels gave a typically quiet warning of what was to come when he said that he hoped he would “grow into the event …”
Faults were evenly spread over the 13 fences in Italian Uliano Vezzani’s first round track, with 13 riders going clear, including Eric Lamaze (CAN), Rodrigo Pessoa (BRA) and Steve Guerdat (SUI).
Janne Friederike Meyer (GER) was first in for the jump-off on the powerful Goja 27 (Wandor van de Mispelaere x Palestro vd Begijnakker), a horse bought from Stephex Stables three years ago. The 10-year-old gelding put on a superb performance, with a clear round in 49 seconds.
Eric Lamaze, Rodrigo Pessoa, Nicola Philippaerts (BEL) and Pieter Devos (BEL) all tried – but picked up faults in their attempts to catch up with Meyer. However, Niels Bruynseels with the extremely quick and careful 10-year-old mare Cas de Liberte (Cracky Z x Chellano Z), got it just right, taking all the risks and stopping the clock at a cracking 46.53 seconds.
None of the remaining seven riders was able to better this, although Steve Guerdat gave it a good go on his 10-year-old mare Bianca (Balou du Rouet x Cardento) – a horse who looks set for stardom. With a time of 47.56 seconds, Steve finished second, with Janne Friederike Meyer third.
Daniel Deusser (GER) was fourth with Equita van’t Zorgvliet (Cassini I x Darco) and the overall leading rider of the weekend.
Niels Bruynseels could not hold back his smiles as he met the press. “I am really happy; my horses have been in great form for the last couple of weeks. It’s a real honour to beat great riders like Steve, Janne Friederike and Daniel. I knew I was quite fast, but with these riders still to go you never know if you win it.”
Steve Guerdat was thrilled with his horse, Bianca. “I always believed in this mare, but when you step a new horse up to Grand Prix level there are always new questions, which you don’t know the answers to,” he said. “She jumped amazing all week, and kept on jumping better and better. The feeling on her is even better than it looks.”
With a total of 229 points, Daniel Deusser (GER) was crowned leading rider of the CSI5* competitions at the Brussels Stephex Masters as the event concluded on Sunday evening. “Being the leading rider means you have had a good show, so I can be very pleased with my weekend. Although I could not win a class, I was placed each time and it was very nice to compete here.” Laura Kraut (USA) was second with 217 points, and Steve Guerdat (SUI) third with 213.
Hampton Classic Horse Show
Mattias Tromp (USA) trumped the competition to win the $50,000 Longines Cup at the Hampton Classic Horse Show on Avon, owned by Beyaert Farm. Pablo Mejia Villa of Colombia was second on his 11-year-old Selle Francais mare, Reglisse Top, and Catherine Tyree (USA) was third on Enjoy Louis.
Eight riders went clear in field of 41 from five nations, but only three went double-clear. Mattias and Avon were the fastest of these, stopping the timer at 38.34.
“This is my biggest win at the Classic,” said an elated Mattias. “It’s a hard venue to win at, so it’s really exciting. This is definitely the most significant win of my career.”
Grand Prix Qualifier
Two-time Olympic gold medallist Mclain Ward edged out 17-year-old Lucy Deslauriers to win the $75,000 Douglas Elliman Grand Prix Qualifier.
Lucy went second of the eight who reached the jump-off and set the mark to beat, clear in 40.75 seconds on Hester. She held the lead until Mclain, the last rider but one, clipped off more than a second on HH Carlos Z, stopping the clock at 39.31.
“Lucy is a great young rider with a very exciting future. I’m excited for her to be on some teams with me in the future, so my hat’s off to her,” he said. “I have a seasoned horse and he’s very good at the speed part. Normally, if he’s in the jump-off, we have a very good chance to win. He just has great foot speed.”
Lucy was amazed at her runner-up finish. “It was a really great class and I am almost shocked at the results. My horse is incredible and I didn’t have much to lose going against these top riders. I just gave it my all and hoped it would be enough. Losing to Mclain is not a very bad thing!”
Mclain won this class last year on his Rio Olympics ride, HH Azur, but says he almost didn’t make it past the first round with Carlos Z.
“I didn’t think I rode him well in the first round. I lost my stirrup – I can’t remember the last time that happened, so I thought I was a little bit lucky to get a clear. Sometimes that just works in your favour; you just take a deep breath.”
Hampton Classic Classic GP – CSI4*
The Hampton Classic Classic GP – CSI4* was won by Richie Moloney, who took home $99,000 USD. He rode Carrabis Z. Charles Jacobs was second on Cassinja S, with Andrew Welles third on Brindis Bogibo. Beezie Madden was fourth on Quister.