1. Carl Hester’s debut on KK Woodstock
We can’t wait to watch Carl Hester as he makes his competitive debut on KK Woodstock, the Kroll family’s grand prix horse usually campaigned by Gareth Hughes. Gareth and the Krolls have handed Carl the ride on “Woody” for the summer. Carl’s options in which to qualify Woody to compete at the dressage World Championships this August are limited after the cancellation of Bolesworth CDI, but it will be great to see this pair in action at grand prix less than a month after Carl first sat on the 16-year-old son of Wolkentanz II. A host of other stars and ones to watch will be in attendance, not least Gareth himself with three exciting rides.
2. Renewed hope for ban on lethal sky lanterns
There is hope of action following a renewed push for a total ban on sky lanterns “to safeguard property and animals”, with a Government petition topping more than 19,000 signatures. NFU launched a petition in May to Tory MP Jo Churchill, Defra parliamentary under secretary of state (minister for agri-innovation and climate adaptation). NFU vice-president David Exwood told H&H the organisation has heard from “plenty of farmers” about “the devastating damage sky lanterns have caused to buildings and fields on their farms and the gruesome injuries they can cause to livestock and other animals”.
3. What a six-year-old just off the lead rein can do
A tiny showjumper who “defies physics” and dreams of one day winning at Hickstead – or riding in the Grand National – has been showing remarkable ability for one who only recently came off the lead rein. Six-year-old Ivy Thomas-Cook only had her first solo canter last August, and has since scored double clears in 70cm British Showjumping classes and developed a “need for speed” with her 128cm pony Whatever Trevor.
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