Samantha’s double victory

Samantha Carrington and Double J Breeze On (image: Cheleken Photography)

Earlier this week, Samantha Carrington was quite happy with her second place in the 5YO title class at the Land Rover Horse of the Year Show. She was rapt last night to win the Pony of the Year with Colours of Lansing. And she was almost speechless with delight this morning to add the Junior Rider of the Year title to her haul, with two immaculate rounds on Double J Breeze On.

Sam credits the little mare, who was bred by her mother Wendy Jacobs out of her own former show jumper Double J Breeze, as having transformed her riding.

“She’s so confident in herself, she gives me confidence. After I started riding her, it gave me confidence to ride my pony better.”

Two titles, two very special mares (image: Cheleken Photography)

Double J Breeze On was originally produced for Wendy by Karen Bruce, and then Jesse Linton had the ride for a season. “She’s a very professional mare, and she’s been a winner right the way through,” says Wendy of the nine-year-old, who is by Euro Sport Centavos. “She’s a stroppy little thing at home, but when she goes into the ring, you know she is so focused.”

She was certainly on her game today, when with Sam she produced one of 10 clears in the opening round of the Junior Rider.

In round two, rails fell for the first five combinations, then Margot Curtis and Flirtini took the steady clear option, leaving all the rails up in a time of 58.05 seconds.

Margot Curtis and Flirtini, third place (image: Cheleken Photography)

Sam was out next, and knew she couldn’t muck around. “I tried to go fast, as I knew there would be two or three more double clears.”

She and Breeze On didn’t so much as touch a pole, and stopped the clock at 55.34 seconds to go into the lead. Francesa Corich van der Bas had a good crack at it riding Cardo, also clear but nearly a second slower than Sam. 

Francesa Corich van der Bas and Cardo were second (image: Cheleken Photography)

The last rider out was the only boy in the jump-off, 14-year-old Rylee Sheehan on Bandito NZPH, and he went like the clappers for a time of 49.35 seconds, but unfortunately for him, it was at the cost of two rails. 

Quite extraordinarily, the top four horses in the class were all by Euro Sport Centavos: Francesca was second on Cardo, Margot third on Flirtini, and Rosa Buist Brown fourth, having had a single rail in the jump-off on her sister’s Vali. Rylee was fifth and Isabelle Jameson sixth on Di Caprio CSNZ.