British Showjumping release
For the second in one day, the GB youth riders competing under the Team Fairfax branding posted a fantastic victory for Great Britain.
Saturday morning had seen the Children’s team dominate their respective Nations Cup competition and Team Fairfax did exactly the same again in the Pony Nations Cup in the afternoon. There were four teams out in Bonheiden, Belgium competing – Children, Pony, Junior and Young Rider – with them all contending a Nations Cup on Saturday and a Grand Prix on Sunday.
It was Harry Charles, aged 14 from Alton Hampshire with his father Peter’s 17 year-old grey gelding Aroldo who took the responsibility of pathfinder for the team. Harry, had already watched his sister (Scarlett) ride to victory in the Children’s nations cup and he looked as confident and focused as she had earlier when he entered the arena. Jumping all fences clear in the first round he incurred an unfortunate time penalty by stopping the clock just outside the time allowed.
With all the team being able to learn from this, it was most definitely a lesson they took on board with them all keeping their pace up to avoid a similar fate. Harry’s second round was as equally foot perfect with him jumping another clear, this time within the time allowed and returning a zero penalty score.
Next to go was Jared Lunn, aged 15 from Hawkwell, Essex with his father Richard’s 11 year-old piebald mare Javas Alun. Incurring an unlucky 8 penalties in the first round, their second round saw them produced a solid performance with just 4 penalties incurred. Leonie Aitkenhead aged 16 from Gainsborough was riding her mothers eye-catching 12 year-old dun gelding Newtown Sampson. She, as was the rest of the team, absolutely delighted with her clear in the first round; only narrowly missing out from achieving the same in the second when a top poll rolled registering a 4 penalty score for them.
Anchor rider Charlotte Ash, aged 15 from Newcastle-upon-Tyne with her mother Shirley’s 10 year-old bay gelding Aughnashammer was unfortunate to incur 8 penalties in the first round but again, as with Jared, they saw a marked improvement in their second round with just one pole rolling and a 4 penalty score.
The course was a difficult one and up to height at 1.30m. Nation after nation incurred penalties with many combinations finishing on double figure penalty scores. Finishing on a total of just 17 penalties, where the three best scores count in each round, it was Great Britain that once again managed to retain pole position and relegate the other European nations further down the final line up. The final scores and placings were as follows:
1st Great Britain (17)
2nd. Netherlands (21)
3rd Belgium (25)
The British Showjumping youth teams are sponsored by Fairfax Saddles. Fairfax’s primary aim is to improve the performance of the competition horse. All the saddles and girths are developed using the most advanced technology and are tested extensively. All research and design work is carried out under the direction of Vanessa Fairfax, an ex-International showjumper and University qualified designer. The company is based in Walsall and manufactures all its own products.
The GB Showjumping Teams are strongly supported by the UK Sport Lottery funded BEF World Class Programme