Sixteen year-old Robert Murphy produced an incredibly quick double clear showjumping round to win the Aintree qualifying leg of the 2017 World Class Programme Under 23 British Championships.
From a field of 50 combinations, eight produced double clear rounds over the 1.45m technical course built by David Cole, to head through to a tense jump-off.
Robert from Lancashire, who won Team Silver with the British junior team at the European Championships in Slovakia earlier this year, was on board the nine year-old Newbridges Chablis, owned by Stacey Webb and Andy Brown. Their first entry into the Under 23 qualifiers, the duo eased into the jump-off and produced another superb clear, stopping the clock on 38.63 seconds to top the leaderboard.
Georgia Tame and Team Z7’s Cash Up took second place on the night, just ahead of James Whitaker and Ian Whitaker’s Glenavadra Brilliant - with just 0.06 seconds separating the two.
Chloe Winchester, part of the World Class Programme Podium Potential squad, finished in fourth with William Funnell’s Billy Cool whilst Yazmin Davis took fifth on Zanbowa Z, owned by Alison Davis.
Harry Wainright, Molly Andrews and James Winter all produced double clears to clinch top eight spots.
Tina Goosen, World Class Programme Showjumping Podium Potential Coordinator commented: “It was impressive to see such a large entry of riders competing in this class and many of them showed that they are very capable of jumping clear over this level of course.”
- Robert Murphy with Newbridges Chablis, owned by Stacey Webb and Andy Brown.
- Georgia Tame with Cash Up, owned by Team Z7.
- James Whitaker with Glenavadra Brilliant, owned by Ian Whitaker.
- Chloe Winchester with Billy Cool, owned by William Funnell.
- Yazmin Davis with Zanbowa Z, owned by Alison Davis.
- Harry Wainright with Pinheiro, owned by Diane Fairclough.
- Molly Andrews with Wilando, owned by David Andrews.
- James Winter with Cosmo Boys, owned by Elizabeth Winter FBHS.
The next qualifier will take place 2 -5 November 2017 (venue to be confirmed).
The final of the Under 23 Championships will take place on the morning of Saturday 16 December 2017 at Olympia, the London International Horse Show.
For more information on the series click here.
The World Class Programme aims to provide Britain’s elite riders with the best preparation to represent Equestrian Team GBR on the international stage and is funded by National Lottery and Exchequer funds via UK Sport.