Sit tight! Some golden moments — and near-misses — from Hickstead’s Derby meeting

The Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby meeting last week (20-23 June) is always a highlight of the equestrian calendar and this year’s record-breaker proved no exception.

From breathtaking launches off the Derby Bank to flying poles and joyful celebrations, we bring you some of our most memorable images from this year’s show.

1. Let’s just make this jump slightly easier…

A veteran of six Hickstead Derbies — including lifting the trophy in 2017 — Golvers Hill (ridden by Nigel Coupe) knows exactly how to tackle the famous fences, including how to make them infinitely more jumpable.

2. Wave to the crowd

It wasn’t their day, but Gerard Clarke and Hollystown Miss Lupin strike a great pose at the summit of the Irish Bank in Saturday’s Speed Derby.

3. If in doubt, slide down!

One of two representatives for Germany in Sunday’s Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby, Jan Peters and Kokolores 2 slide their way back down to earth from the top of the Bank, completing the track with 28 faults.

4. That winning feeling

Harriet NUTTALL riding SILVER LIFT winner of the Science Supplements Speed Derby (Class 172) during The Al Shira'aa Hickstead Derby Meeting held at The All England Jumping Course in Hickstead near Burgess Hill in West Sussex in the UK between 20-23rd June 2019

Harriet Nuttall celebrates a hugely popular victory in the Science Supplements Speed Derby with the wonderful 14-year-old gelding Silver Lift

5. It’s a long way down!

Irish rider Elizabeth Power and Doonaveeragh O One let gravity assist in their descent of the 10ft6in Bank. This experienced combination came home with eight faults to share sixth place in this year’s class.

6. Well sat!

San Franzisko

It’s not that often you see a coloured horse jumping round the International Arena at Hickstead so all eyes were on the striking San Franzisko 10, ridden by Ralf-Werner Konig of Germany.

7. Best foot forward

Hats off to PC Charlotte Lee of Forces Equine and the 15-year-old mare Zarina, who produced one of only five clear rounds in Saturday’s Speed Derby to finish just out of the prize-money.

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8. He’s back for more!

Making his second appearance in our gallery, Gerard Clarke teams up with Lupins Lux Z for another attention grabbing picture — this time in Sunday’s feature class as they launch off the fearsome Bank.

9. And finally… even the winner had a heart-stopping moment or two

En route to becoming the youngest ever winner of the Hickstead Derby, 19-year-old Michael Pender and Hearton Du Bois Halleux sent pulses racing after their dramatic descent of the Derby Bank.

Don’t miss the full report from this year’s Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby meeting in the current issue of Horse & Hound (dated Thursday 27 June).