This year Monmouth BE horse trials was held at Howick Farm, a beautiful setting for a lovely event with perfect eventing weather for the horses and just a jacket needed near to hand for those watching. Watching the action is easy at Howick with it’s compact layout meaning you never had to walk far and you can see so much. For those who walked up the short hill to where the commentary point was located, you were rewarded with a great view of the majority of the XC to the right, the dressage was in the distance in a good quiet spot on the left and the SJ and warm up just below.
The event attracted plenty of good riders and horses bar those who were either competing at the World Equestrian Games in the USA or Blenheim but I was there to see and photograph our local talent in action of which there were plenty! Apologies in advance for local people I missed!
Herefordshire International event rider Louise Harwood had plenty of rides over the 2 days resulting in a couple of wins with Brechfa Baruch and Jesatran Firecracker and a 3rd with Dassett Golden Touch. Another rider with a double win was Bristol rider Jason Hobbs who, amongst others, rides for Gillie Bulmer on her Tillington Perry, who won his section on a score of 25.5 which is ideal prep before they head for the 5yo champs at Osberton. Jason also won on Maindiff Zulu Revolver and had a 5th and 9th on 2 other horses, so a good day at the office for him. Vittoria Panizzon may be Italian, but she lives round the corner from me at Redmarley, so she’s local! She was 1st with Gebaliaretto as well as 6th & 7th in the BE100 plus and then must have hot footed it to Blenheim to ride Super Cillious into 8th place in the CIC 3*. Another local rider to do well was Abergavenny based Lucy Morgan, who won a BE100 section on Carrigshawn Vendi. Dickon Reader who’s yard is at Drybrook is making a name for himself too and he proved his talent again with a 2nd on Horethe Hilje and 3rd on Kate Kearns’s Storm Clara. I was impressed to catch up with Rebecca Dazelely who is back eventing after a couple of decades out and in this her second run following only a ‘schooling session’ in the BE80 at Sapey, came 3rd on an equal score with Vicky Tuffs and only 0.2 off the winner Leominster rider Phoebe Barnett with Clintonstown Windy. Becca may not have been eventing for quite a while, but she rides for Christine Hardinge every weekend and so has plenty of experience. Christine herself had a good run for 4th in the novice with Amorose (who’s for sale incidentally) and then 8th with Milady in the BE100 open. The BE100Ou18 (under 18) section was won by Jaymee Savill from Birdwood, who was riding Independent Johnny. They finished on their dressage score of 28 and were one of only a handful to finish on a clean slate in this section. Kat Raybould was another local rider to win her section riding Ferdinant N. Her good dressage and a double clear left her well ahead of her closest rivals, second placed Nick Gauntlett and third placed Harry Meade.
It was great to see lots of old friends and familiar faces at Howick. Some were riding, some were my pupils, some owners, some spectating and lots volunteering. It’s such a fabulous sport and this was a lovely event. Make sure you don’t miss it next year!
Well done to organiser Mrs Sharon Norrish and her team. SJ Course Designer was Sam Pepperall and XC Course Designer & Builder – Mr Simon Grundy.
All photos copyright Sally Newcomb. https://www.facebook.com/SallyNewcombPhotography/