The world number two showjumper, Ben Maher, continues to dominate out in Florida, whilst a little closer to home UK Sport Lottery funded World Class Development Programme riders made their mark in Paris plus a multitude of British riders were in Spain delivering great results on the Sunshine Tour.
FTI WINTER EQUESTRIAN FESTIVAL, WELLINGTON, FLORIDA
Ben Maher made it Grand Prix win number five this weekend, as he took home the top spot in the 1.60m $125,000 Horsewear Ireland Grand Prix at the FTI Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida. Forty-five combinations lined up at the start of the competition, with just six making faultless rounds to take them in to the jump-off. All six jump-off challengers produced clear rounds and less than a second separated the top three competitors, but Britain’s Maher came out on top on board Jane F Clark’s gelding Urico in a time of 41.01seconds, ahead of USA rider Lauren Hough (Ohlala).
Ben (Kavanagh IV) also competed alongside fellow Brit Tim Gredley (Unex Omelli) in the Spy Coast Farm 1.45m Speed Class, and both enjoyed top five finishes with Ben stopping the clock at 67.71 seconds for fourth place and Tim just 0.28 seconds behind to take fifth.
SAUT HERMÈS AU GRANDE PALAIS CSI5* SHOW, PARIS, FRANCE
Laura Renwick and world number one Scott Brash, posted some top results at the Parisian show, with Scott finishing in fourth place on Lady Pauline Kirkham & Lady Pauline Harris’, Hello Annie, after producing a double clear in a time of 51.38 seconds in the Prix GL event. Laura Renwick rode Mr David Perry’s, Oz de Breve, to a fast double clear to secure fourth place in the Prix de la Ville de Paris. Laura then followed this up on board Mr & Mrs Renwick’s, Bintang II, to take another fourth place this time in the Grand Prix Hermès after posting a time of 45.25 seconds in the jump-off.
UK Sport funded World Class Development rider Louise Saywell took top honours in the Les Talents Hermès Under 25 on the aptly named Hello Winner, owned by Lady Pauline Kirkham & Lady Pauline Harris. The pair posted one of only four double clears in a time of 36.95 seconds, taking the win ahead of German rider Jana Wargers (Cornet´s Dream).
Louise and Hello Winner also finished off their weekend on top of the podium with fellow Development rider, Jessie Drea from West Sussex. Riding Touchable, owned by Miss L Humphries, Jessie assisted the British pair to the only clean score card in the 1.25m Under 25 two round team competition and a convincing win ahead of Sweden and Ireland.
Daniel Nielson piloted Miss Stacy Willsone’s Coco Bongo to second place in the hotly contested Prix de la Ville de Paris class on Sunday. Travelling from his Essex base, Daniel finished on a double clear in a time of 29.75 seconds, just over a second behind 2013 Individual European gold medallist Roger Yves Bost (Castle Forbes Vivaldo vh Costersveld).
DOHA CSI5*, QATAR
Michael Whittaker enjoyed a selection of good placings at the CSI5* show in Qatar, including a win in the 1.50m Against the Clock class riding Mrs B. Mertens and his own Amai.
VIDAUBAN I CSI2*, FRANCE
British riders Jemma Kirk and Sam Hutton both contested the Vidauban CSI2* Grand Prix in France this weekend. UK Sport funded World Class Development Programme rider Sam picked up an unlucky four faults in the jump-off after posting a time of 42.27 seconds on board Dunwalke Limited’s, Heidi du Ruisseau z, whilst fellow Brit Jemma Kirk put in a quick double clear to take third place on Mrs Bunty Kirk’s, Qunicy 126.
VEJER DE LA FRONTERA CSI3*, SPAIN
British riders enjoyed a good weekend at the fourth leg of the Sunshine Tour in Spain. A host of top results were produced across all four days of competition, all results can be viewed via the show website below.
PARA WINTER FESTIVAL OF DRESSAGE, VALE VIEW EQUESTRIAN CENTRE, LEICESTERSHIRE
British Dressage’s winter championships took place this weekend at the Vale View Equestrian Centre in Leicestershire. Good tests were showcased by riders across the grades at what is, for some, the first competition of the 2014 season. Full results can be viewed through the Equestrian Centres website below.