A batch of talented home-produced riders got the opportunity to ride at Your Horse Live during the second round of the 2021 SEIB Search For A Star finals.
Five championships took place, for amateur and open veteran horses and ponies, mountain and moorlands (M&M), part-bred traditionals and in-hand exhibits.
Find out which combinations reigned in these ultra competitive showing championships:
SFAS veteran horse and pony of the year
Full-time marketing lead Abi Sole and her own ex-racehorse Hero Worship were crowned open veteran champions. The gelding, now 18, was second in the SEIB Racehorse to Riding Horse finals at Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) in October.
Hero Worship had three starts on the Flat for trainer Michael Jarvis, winning twice. He earned just under £20,000 during a short but successful racing career.
“This was a great class and we have really enjoyed taking part,” said Abi. “It was nice to have the live score element during the class. Hero was really relaxed going in the ring and the win tops off a great season for the both of us. I couldn’t ask for more from him.”
SFAS mountain and moorland pony of the year
Welsh section D gelding Wishaw Red Admiral captured the M&M tri-colour for his owner Simone Harrison, who works as a talent acquisition lead for fashion brand Missguided.
Simone bought Red as a two-year-old and rode him to sixth at the Royal International Horse Show (RIHS) this year as well as placings in HOYS qualifiers.
“The atmosphere in the ring was amazing,” Simone said. “Red has been fully home-produced since I bought him and he has always enjoyed turning his hoof to showing. Next year we plan to campaign more of the opens with a view to secure a HOYS ticket.”
SFAS amateur veteran horse and pony of the year
Louise Chamberlain rode her own 18-year-old mare Mystical Clover to the top of the amateur veteran line-up. The pair qualified for the 2021 SEIB Search For A Star finals at Bury Farm and were presented for the SEIB SFAS riding club show horse finals in 2016.
Louise works full-time as a graphic designer and has evented to novice level.
“I bought Clover as an eventer and took her through Pony Club and the 100s, before she fell out of love with it,” said Louise. “In 2016, we decided to try showing and haven’t looked back. I am so proud of her.”
SFAS in-hand horse and pony of the year
The 24-year-old Welsh section B Cottrell Riverdance (Ronnie), owned by Selina Bowles and handled by Millie Bowles, was crowned winner of the in-hand championship.
Millie and Ronnie recently won the Veteran Horse Society veteran supreme overall final for the second time.
“I have owned Ronnie since he was 18; he came to us for a quieter life but it just hasn’t turned out that way as he loves his job too much,” said Millie. “He was a games pony when he was younger and he still loves to have that buzz and excitement around him. He loves being in the ring, and has really enjoyed being here.”
SFAS part-bred traditional of the year
Heading the part-bred traditional championship was Rosie Wrest aboard her 15-year-old bay gelding Branston Pickle.
“I feel very emotional; Branston is an amazing horse,” said Rosie. “I’ve been riding him for nearly six years; we started doing dressage and then decided to try showing. We set out with the aim of getting just one rosette and so to have won a championship is just amazing.”
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