1. The London International Horse Show
The Christmas show the horse world has been waiting for got under way yesterday. The first day of action included the dressage World Cup featuring the short grand prix, top-class showjumping, extreme driving and the famous Puissance, not forgetting the Shetland Pony Grand National and the musical ride of The Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment.
The show’s new venue at the ExCeL in London won the seal of approval from Charlotte Dujardin who described it as “lovely”, but she added “there’s nothing like that grand hall”, referring to the show’s former venue at Olympia.
Thanks to a new BBC agreement in place, you can enjoy watching much the action from home. Find out how, here…
2. Charlotte Dujardin and Gio reign supreme in the grand prix
Britain’s team and individual Olympic bronze medal-winning combination posted 82.55% in the short grand prix test to take the honours – and secure the pair’s place in the grand prix freestyle this evening (17 December).
“Pumpkin”, who is now owned by Annabella Pidgley, finished well clear of the rest of the field, and Charlotte said she was “absolutely over the moon” with the test. In second was Germany’s Frederic Wandres with the British-bred Dimaggio son Duke Of Britain with 75.16%, and third was Denmark’s Nanna Skodberg Merrald riding Fiona Bigwood’s Rio Olympic ride Atterupgaards Orthilia.
3. Park Lane Stables buys Teddington home
Park Lane Stables will finish 2021 on a high after buying its Teddington home. The news is a happy ending to a year-long rollercoaster for the charity and means that it is now “fully in control of its own destiny”.
Around a year ago, Park Lane Stables was told its lease would not be renewed when it expired in May 2021. The charity launched a crowdfunding campaign on New Year’s Eve 2020 to raise £1m to buy the premises and although the fundraising target was soon hit in February, the celebrations proved short-lived as a question mark dangled over whether the charity would be successful in its attempt to buy property. But following months of negotiations, the charity has collected the keys to return as “the proud new owners” of its home of 13 years.
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