Show jumper Sam Hutton won his first CSI3* Grand Prix on Sunday in Drachten, The Netherlands (16-19 January 2014), partnering Dunwalke Limited’s talented young mare Heidi du Ruisseau Z.
The 1.55m Grand Prix saw a hotly contested jump-off, with fourteen riders coming forward. In a spectacular climax to the show, Sam – the last drawn rider – took the top honours after finishing his round in a time of 28.67seconds, the only rider in the jump-off to break the 29second barrier.
His win in the Grand Prix has added to his earlier successes out at the show, finishing fourth in the 1.45m CSI2* Grand Prix (12 January) and seventh in the World Ranking 1.50m Smallingerland Prijs jump-off class last Friday (17).
Sam, who is on the British Equestrian federation’s UK Sport Lottery funded World Class Development Programme, has been riding the 10 year old bay mare [Heidi du Ruisseau Z] for US based rider and owner Alexandra Thornton since last year. Originally from Hersham in Surrey he is currently based in Valkensvaard, The Netherlands with Global Champion Tour organiser and former Olympian Jan Tops and his wife international showjumper Edwina Tops Alexander.
The World Class Development Programme underpins World Class Performance and, together with the Equine Pathway, they comprise the Equestrian World Class Programme, incorporating the three Olympic sports of dressage, eventing, showjumping and the Paralympic sport of para-equestrian dressage. The Programme has been funded by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, through Exchequer and National Lottery funds, via UK Sport since 1998.