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Tall Trees Arena in Cornwall was the venue for the Baileys/BEF Futurity on the 7 August, which gave plenty of West Country breeders the opportunity to exhibit their young horses.

One elite premium was awarded to dressage filly foal, Newton Flexitime (Furst Romancier x Vivaldi) (pictured top). She scored an elite premium of 9.00 for her owner and breeder, Lorna Wilson from the Newton Stud in Devon.

Lorna said: “Flexitime is elegant and has great trainability, she will be in our breeding programme.  We will flush out some embryos from her as a two-year-old and she will be backed at three and go on to do her mare performance test.  We will then see how it goes.”  This was a first visit to the Futurity for Lorna for some years, she continued: “I was pleased with the linear scoring, it will provide some really interesting information for future records.”

Heading the showjumping entries was Andrew James and Kathryn Pearn’s filly foal, Lillipep (Peppermill x Libero H). She scored a higher first premium of 8.75.

Andrew said: “We are really pleased with Lillipep, she is the fifth foal from our mare, Raphael.” Andrew and Kathryn bought Raphael from Holland as a youngster and Andrew jumped her to 1.40m level. They competed in the HOYS Foxhunter final in 2007. Andrew continued: “We still have all of Raphael’s foals. The eldest is now a five-year-old competing in foxhunter classes. Lillipep has a three-year-old full brother, we are so impressed with him that we decided to go back to Peppermill for Lillipep. I will get each of the youngsters out jumping and we will see how we go.”

Lillipep

Lillipep

Best scoring three-year-old at Tall Trees was also a potential showjumper; FC Cornets Jubilee (Cornet’s Prinz x Argentinus) who scored a higher first premium of 8.71 for owner and breeder, Fiona Cox.

Fiona said: “Billy, as he is known, is very special to us. This was the first time he has been to the futurity and he was brilliant. We were a tiny bit disappointed not to get the elite premium but he will go for grading with the AES this autumn. Billy will have a competitive career, we won’t do live coverings. He will go to West Kingston Stud and we will use frozen semen.” Billy’s dam, Argenta Mayday is the first filly that Fiona bred and Billy is her first foal.

Welsh pony leads the way

Nicola Budd’s three-year-old sports pony Welsh section B colt, Langwedh Aristotle (Kalevan Mystic Pride x Cottrell Osprey) took a higher first premium of 8.50 in the eventing section.

Nicola said: “He is rather special so we had to bring him to the Futurity. Aristotle is already a licensed stallion and has covered two mares this season, a part bred Arab and a Welsh section C. We are really looking forward to seeing the offspring. I lost a couple of foals the year Aristotle was born and had stopped breeding for a few years. But my daughter Natalie is taking over the horses now and we have a couple in foal for next year.” Aristotle will combine a career under saddle showing and dressage with stallion duties. Natalie exhibited him at the Futurity for Nicola.

The highest scoring yearling at Tall Trees was former Futurity elite scorer, Pretty Picture (Rembrandt DDH x Black Boy) with a higher first premium of 8.50. The dressage sports pony is owned and was bred by Amy Cox from Bideford. As a foal in 2014, Pretty Picture scored an elite premium of 9.02 at the Bicton Futurity. Chartered Veterinary Physiotherapist Amy, bred Pretty Picture from her mare, Pretty Women who is graded elite with the Sports Pony Studbook Society (SPSS) and has competed on FEI Pony Dressage teams for Germany and Britain.

Pretty Picture

Pretty Picture

Evovling Futurity

The Futurity is a continually evolving process. 2013 saw the introduction of the Futurity equine bridge which is now being run as an extension of the Futurity evaluations. The Futurity equine bridge aims to provide top Futurity graduates with the direction and support they will need as four-year-olds so that they begin their early years under saddle in a way that allows for sustained physical and mental development. In order to be eligible for the Futurity Equine Bridge all horses must obtain a Futurity score of 8.5 or above and a high enough vet score in the in their three-year-old year.

The BEF’s Head of Equine Development Jan Rogers said: “The Futurity celebrates its tenth anniversary this year. We are increasingly seeing that breeders, buyers and riders of British bred horses are finding that a Futurity premium is a very useful aid in helping assess these horses. We are also seeing a marked improvement in the standard of youngsters entered in the futurity, which is very good news for the future of British breeding”.

Visit www.britishbreeding.org for full details and results.

Futurity dates and venues 2015

1st August – Catherston Stud, Hampshire
2nd August – Chelwood Equestrian, East Sussex
3rd August – Writtle College, Essex
4th August – The College, Keysoe, Bedfordshire
7th August – Tall Trees Arena, Cornwall
9th August – Hartpury College, Gloucestershire
11th August – Arena UK, Lincolnshire
12th August – Richmond Equestrian Centre, North Yorkshire
13th August – Myerscough College, Lancashire
14th August – Southview Equestrian Centre, Cheshire
17th August – Solihull Riding Club, West Midlands
18th August – Solihull Riding Club, West Midlands