Talented 10-year-old Daisy Mansfield and her 13-year-old Welsh section C Rayid Heartbreaker (above) certainly turned some heads during Saturday’s KBIS Prelim Silver Winter championship – and the judges agreed, awarding the pair 70.23% for second place, just 0.2% behind the winner.

“I’ve only had ‘Bee’ since August and this is my first nationals,” said Daisy, who wowed spectators with her centre line trot on day four of the NAF Five Star Winter Dressage Championships.

“We call her ‘Beelegro’ at home,” said Daisy’s mother. “We have her on loan from Alice Beauchamp who has competed her up to medium level.”

Based in Hampshire, Daisy and Bee’s dressage partnership has got off to a flying start, and they qualified for the nationals before Christmas, winning their regional qualifier at Merrist Wood.

“She can be a typical Welsh sometimes,” said Daisy of the Wyken Rob Roy daughter. “She can be very naughty and cheeky, but I have learnt to channel her energy now — she was as good as gold today.”

Daisy and Bee have their sights firmly set on the pony teams.

When asked if she felt the pressure competing against her older rivals, Daisy replied: “Yes, there was some pressure, but as long as we have fun that’s all that matters.”

Also securing a placing with her Welsh section D pony was 12-year-old Daisy Davies, who was riding her onw Armada Dyffryncothi Bridget (pictured, below). The pair took third place in the Petplan Equine Prelim Under 18 Area Festival championship, after qualifying on a wild card.

The nine-year-old mare “Scruffy” has been with Daisy for 15 months and came from family friends who recommended her as a great match for the ambitious junior.

“She felt the best ever today,” said Daisy. “She was amazing in the stretch and the free walk. She was really chilled, which was a nice surprise as she can often be a bit mad.

“We have worked hard with my amazing trainer Abbie Newbury over the last few months. We won the first round of qualifiers and then took third in the next, meaning we secured a wild card — I couldn’t believe we’d made it.”

For a full report from the British Dressage Winter Championships and Area Festival final – as well as news, views and expert comment – don’t miss Thursday’s issue of Horse & Hound magazine (19 April 2018)