‘I was super shocked and excited’: 8 riders awarded wild-card tickets to the Royal International

  • Eight combinations who competed in respective UK Ponies and Horses Ltd (UKPH) mountain and moorland (M&M) qualifiers during 2022 will get the opportunity to compete at the Royal International Horse Show in July through the society’s wild-card series.

    Riders and their ponies who contested UKPH M&M ridden qualifiers in small breeds, large breeds, intermediate mixed breeds and amateur mixed breeds classes during 2022 were automatically entered into a points scheme. The top two unqualified combinations who gained the most points in each class have been awarded tickets.

    The series, which is in its second year, has garnered significant support this season.

    “We’ve had a lot of keen riders and parents who have been eagerly keeping an eye on the leaderboard,” said Debbie Miller from UKPH. “The main aim is to reward our members for their consistency and hard work during the season.”

    Points were awarded on a sliding scale to sixth place, with the second-placed competitor receiving five points, third four points, and so on. If there were fewer than six competitors forward, the second-placed combination received two points. The following combinations are now through to the RIHS final:

    Small breeds: Hope Ghosts Little Boy and Ella Eynon/Millford Fair Bouncer and Lola Carabine
    Large breeds: Oakmill Horatio and Scarlett Tharme, and Brynfa Jolly Roger and Scarlett Marshall
    Intermediates: Fourmerk Rosalyn and Lucy Dyer, and Conway Clara Brown Alicia Davidson
    Amateur: Stowbrook Red Kite and Davinia Johnson, and Kiltiernan Storm and Brooke Corbett

    “We had eight very excited riders; I definitely don’t mind making those kinds of phone calls,” said Debbie.

    Davinia Johnson topped the amateur points scheme with her Exmoor Stowbrook Red Kite.

    “I was super shocked to get the ticket, as the amateurs is such a tough class due to the fact it’s open to all the M&M breeds,” said Davinia. “My boyfriend videoed my phone call as I was so excited.

    “I’ve really enjoyed doing the qualifiers, especially as Kite has been the only small breed in the class sometimes. It’s a super series and I’ve made so many new friends on the way.”

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