We may have been able to only experience snippets of the 2020 showing season due to the Coronavirus pandemic but memories were still made and champions still crowned.
Here are nine moments from the 2020 term which made us smile…
1. Shetland gallops to supreme
The super Shetland Evie’s Pride and six-year-old jockey Scarlett Sharp nailed their supreme performance to claim the overall ridden title at the BSPA Festival of Showing and Winter Championships. After qualifying for the Royal International (RIHS) in the traditional ponies earlier in the day, the mini marvels returned to impress overall judges Julian Walters, Emma Payne and Janet Smithers.
2. Duo reign on debut
Erin Grier and Fielding Fairytale landed the overall supreme at the BSPS Scottish Winter Show on their debut outing together. Karen Grier’s 10-year-old mare by Demonstrator headed the show hunter pony championship for producer Caitlin Galbraith before taking the overall.
“This is Erin’s first horse,” said Caitlin. “It’s a hard transition to move up onto the bigger rides, but Erin has been working hard at home over the winter. Last year was Fairytale’s first season as a hunter pony. She can be hot and needs a lot of working in, but is very genuine.”
3. RIHS winner is back with a bang
At BSPS Area 6 working hunter show, 2019 RIHS winner Bowland Undercover (Betty) started her 2020 open campaign winning both open 15hh and intermediate classes, before netting the section championship.
Imogen Rodger rode Betty — pictured in 2019 — for her mother, Danielle. The seven-year-old — who is produced by Russell Ingram – was just a novice when she won at Hickstead. She was purchased unseen two years ago.
“She won Hickstead during her first season with one of only a handful of clears and a 19/20 mark for conformation,” said Danielle.
4. Show team land show pony hat-trick
Producer Edward Young scored a deserved hat-trick in the show pony classes, with his charges winning all three height sections at BSPS Area 3B’s training show.
Coming out as the eventual champion was the 128cm winner, Claire Smith’s Tuscany Sweet Serenade (Queenie) ridden by Clare’s daughter Cate Mitchell, who celebrated her 11th birthday two days after the show.
Lexy Laurens and Bankswood Jacaranda won the 148cm and section reserve while Hallie Kerry-Oates and Renedene Morning Star bagged the 138cm class.
“We kept them ticking over during lockdown and we’re fortunate to be in the Derbyshire Peak District so have some great bridleways on the doorstep” said Edward after the show. “The babies have seen a bit of the world and the established animals have had a change of scene.”
5. Welsh stallion remains unbeaten
The South Eastern Welsh Pony and Cob Association’s (SEWPCA) 50th anniversary show saw Welsh section B stallion Longhalves Renoir (Levi) scoop the supreme for his owner Jo Filmer.
The big-moving grey is by Jo’s former Cuddy in-hand and HOYS ridden finalist Lemonshill Falcon.
Levi has won several accolades in the show ring and in the dressage arena; in 2018 he was crowned National Pony Society (NPS) dressage supreme champion with 13-year-old Megan Austin. He is currently unbeaten in adult in-hand classes.
“He is an absolute sweetheart and is the perfect gentleman, whether he is covering mares or being ridden by children,” said Jo.
6. Team takes overall in-hand and ridden sashes
At the CHAPS Summer Championship Covid Show, Team Elenor/Parrott brought just two animals but dominated both the in-hand and ridden supremes.
The in-hand crown went to three-year-old non-native champion Myspires Spirit Of Summer, led by Craig Elenor, while their ridden victor was native horse champion Starlight (Queenie), ridden by Sara Parrott.
“She has even pulled a cart at Appleby Fair,” said Sara of Queenie. “I adore the mare and couldn’t see her leave us. I’ve always wanted to win this supreme so to do it on her is really special.”
7. 13-year-old intermediate leads BSPS summer champs field
Ellis Taverner-Burns, 18, landed her first Philip Judge overall supreme of show title with 13-year-old The Politician at the BSPS Summer Championships, the first major showing show to be held post-COVID lockdown.
Sarah Maclean-Perriment’s Team Harvey-produced 13-year-old gelding was chosen out of a quality field of champions:
“My sister Brogan [Taverner] was supreme here in 2009 with another intermediate, Paschal High Flyer,” said Ellis, who took over the ride after Smithy was sold in July.
“Smithy” was also supreme intermediate here last year for previous owner Hannah Green.
Watch the Horse & Hound Awards 2020 virtual ceremony
8. Cob shows his class and elegance
Danielle Heath crowned a sparkling weekend for her team when landing the final overall open supreme at the British Show Horse Association (BSHA) Autumn Gala.
Guy Mears’ ladies’ show horse champion, maxi cob Brookdale Limited Edition (Archie), gave a magical show which earned the only two perfect scores of the day.
This was not only Archie’s first outing of the year, but a debut in “sideways” supreme ranks for Danielle.
Earlier, Archie had collected the maxi cob title partnered by Issy Mears, 19.
9. Star of the future tops native spectacle
David Tatlow and his daughter Loraine Homer chose Zoe Clarke’s Heritage ridden novice champion, the Dartmoor Kingshaugh Hailstorm (Harry) to head a quality-filled field of 16 overall supreme finalists at the BSPS Heritage Championships.
Harry was partnered by his young producer Charley Baxter.
“The novice class on Saturday was my first Heritage show win, so that in itself was amazing – then to be champion was a massive achievement,” said Charley. “When I saw the line-up in the supreme, I was a bit worried that my show would be a bit basic as I didn’t want to put any pressure on Harry – I just wanted him to have a great experience in there.”
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