Smith raises the bar at Gleneagles
Gleneagles Equestrian School in Perthshire played host to the second qualifying competition of the Dodson & Horrell and the World Class Programme Under 23 British Championship series this weekend (22 March 2014).
It was a small but competitive class that saw just ten riders line-up for the up-to-height technical course, built by course-designer Mark McGowan. The course proved challenging to some, with five clear rounds recorded across the field.
Fresh back from the Portugal circuit, it Scottish showjumper James Smith with Mrs Leona Smith’s thirteen year old grey mare Cumina, who after going first in the jump-off, took the win posting a quick time of 34.26 seconds from an expertly judged round.
Aimee Bell produced an impressive performance aboard the twelve year old bay Cameron Poe, owned by Sally Guild, to finish second in a time of 35.56seconds, with BEF Excel Talent Programme rider Millie Allen taking third with Senator Cantino II, owned by Peter Allen.
Stephanie Platts (Ardenteggle Poltarf, owned by Susan Platts) took fourth, with Lucy Guild (Titi D’Oase) fifth and Jessica Hewitt (Zaronda II, owned by Rachael Evison) sixth.
Through the qualifiers and an accumulation of points, riders aim to qualify for the final, which takes place at the London International Horse Show, Olympia in December.
There was a total prize fund of £1650 for the qualifier, and Training Vouchers to the value of £725.00 awarded to the first six prize-winning riders currently eligible for British Team Selection.
The Championships are supported by feed manufacturer Dodson & Horrell and by the World Class Development Programme. The Development Programme is funded by Lottery and Exchequer funds via UK Sport; the Programme seeks to identify and develop talented athletes who have shown the potential to reach the world stage.
Dodson & Horrell has a long history of support in equestrian sports across all levels, from its sponsorship of Riding Club and Pony Club events, over 25 years of support for Point-to-Point racing to title sponsorship of the iconic Chatsworth International Horse Trials. As Royal Warrant holder and official supplier of nutrition to Equestrian Team GBR, Dodson & Horrell will play a pivotal advisory role in the lead up to this year’s WEG, Normandy and the 2016 Rio Olympics.