Death of a tiny superstar, the greatness of Olive Nicholls, plus other things the horse world is talking about

Horse & Hound’s daily debrief, brought to you every weekday

  • 1. Farewell to a tiny superstar

    Catherston Stud has paid tribute to tiny superstar Littledale Bright Star, who has been put down aged 26. The 12.2hh Catherston Nightsafe stallion had been at Catherston since he was a weanling, siring about 100 progeny in the UK, US, New Zealand and Australia. He is the only pony stallion to have achieved elite status owing to the international achievements of his offspring in all three Olympic disciplines.

    Read all about this mini megastar

    3. Olive Nicholls’ first win as a trainer

    Young star Olive Nicholls scored an impressive double, as well as her first win as a trainer, at Hursely Hambledon point-to-point at Larkhill in Wiltshire last weekend (26 November). Olive, 17, kicked off her day with a neat victory in the ladies’ open, riding her champion trainer father Paul Nicholls’, and John Bolton’s Viroflay, a horse she now trains herself, having previously been in the care of her mother Georgina Nicholls.

    “My long-term aim is to train horses under Rules, so to get my first winner as a trainer is amazing,” says Olive, who was the 2022 novice ladies’ jockey point-to-point champion.

    Find out more about Olive’s world right now

    3. Loss of a proud Yorkshire horseman

    Roy Robinson, a proud Yorkshireman with a passion for horses, died on 12 November, aged 91. Roy was whipper-in for the Derwent for eight seasons and continued as a lifelong follower, on horseback and then in a car, until he was 90.

    He was passionate about showjumping, initially as a rider then, following a back injury, as a breeder. During the 1950s and ’60s he was a regular on the northern British Showjumping (BS) circuit, competing alongside Harvey Smith, the Fletchers and the Barkers to name just a few. The highlight of his showjumping career came in 1960 when he competed in two jumping classes at Horse of the Year Show on the home-produced horse King Pin (Manilla).

    Obituary: Roy Robinson

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