Tales from Somerford: Former RIHS champion shines in the dressage arena ahead of final HOYS appearance

  • A traditional coloured pony made use of the Lemieux National Dressage Championships as preparation for the Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) next month, where he has qualified as a ridden coloured.

    Rebecca Lock’s impressive gelding Brickell Mr Pickwick (George) was making his National Dressage Championship debut in two classes, the Mobiliser Preliminary Silver Championship and the Bettalife Novice Silver Championship. In his first class he placed 12th and in the latter he finished 15th, with a score of just over 68%.

    The 12-year-old Piebald by Tucker II — who stands at just 13.2hh — has enjoyed prolific success in the show ring, qualifying for HOYS on several occasions and clinching the pony coloured supreme accolade at the Royal International (RIHS) in 2018. He will make his sixth, and final, HOYS appearance next month.

    “As he’s pretty much won everything he could win in the show ring I decided to try something different to keep us both occupied,” said Rebecca, when asked why she decided to foray into dressage. “He’ll do HOYS one more time but as I’m never one to over do it I thought that six qualifications was enough. Dressage has been something new for him and while he’s not built for the job he gives 150% and the judges seem to appreciate what he can do.”

    Rebecca bought the small but mighty traditional when he was a yearling from breeder Bob Brickell and had intended to sell him as a four-year-old.

    “I do it all from home; my set-up is a stable on a sloped field, and he’s kept fit with lots of hacking. I go for lessons every few weeks to keep us both ticking over.

    “Today, I was particularly pleased with our medium paces. He’s very balanced and he can collect easily, too. During our test there was a lot of applause and commotion coming from another ring, and I think his showing career has helped him cope in those buzy environments.”

    With HOYS just a couple of weeks away, Rebecca will turn her attention to the show ring once she gets home from the National Dressage Championships:

    “I’ve not had time to think about HOYS but once I get home I can start getting ready and panicking about his coat. He’ll have some down time before the big day. He’s just so good he doesn’t need much preparation at all.”

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