In the final qualifier for the Dodson & Horrell and World Class Programme under 23 Championships, Graham Babes took the top spot in a highly contested six way jump off at the Morris Equestrian Centre.
On board his mount Boucheron, they were the final pair to go in the jump off and they snatched the win after recording a superb double clear, edging World Class Podium Potential athlete Jake Saywell and Rachel Gascoine’s Cantho Z who also went clear into second place as they won by half a second. Aimee Bell and Cameron Poe, owned by Sally Guild slipped into third after also producing two clear rounds.
Speaking after the class, the runner up Jake Saywell said: “It was a very good and competitive class and it was a nice arena to jump in.”
“I’ve been working with this horse [Cantho Z] for around a year and he’s a really good jumper and I was really pleased with how he went round.”
Fourth place went to James Whitaker and Mersley Chakotay, owned by Kington Langley Stud who finished just ahead of Sally Hopkinson and Temple Marple, owned by David Hopkinson Ltd. Olivia Poole who also featured in the jump off and finished in sixth with her ride Connery III and Charlene Bastone placed seventh with Stacey Webb’s Newbridges Chablis SW.
The World Class Programme Showjumping Performance Manager, Di Lampard commented: “The qualifier at Morris was of an extremely high standard and was well won by Graham Babes.
“We are now really looking forward to seeing the final at Olympia [17 December]; it’s going to be a great young rider shootout and they will all want to win that title.”
The Championship is supported by Dodson & Horrell who is Europe's leading equine feed manufacturer and a highly respected worldwide authority on animal nutrition and feeding. Dodson & Horrell’s involvement of the Under 23 British Championship demonstrates its history of support in equestrian sports across all levels, from sponsorship of the British Dressage Novice Championships, the British Showjumping Amateur & Veteran Championships and The Festival of British Eventing Novice Championship to title sponsorship of the iconic Dodson & Horrell Chatsworth International Horse Trials. In addition, as official supplier of nutrition to Equestrian Team GBR, Dodson & Horrell played a pivotal advisory role in the lead up to the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
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.