Emma-Jo Slater stormed home to claim victory in Royal Windsor Horse Show’s prestigious Walwyn novice on the mare Kimba Time, fulfilling a long-held ambition for her breeder-producer Kim Barzilay.
“I’ve been trying to win this one for 20 years,” said Kim. “It’s been a little goal of mine and now it’s done.”
Course designer Bernardo Costa Cabral had set an inviting course for this six-year-old final, for which horses qualify during the morning’s Foxhunter class, won by Emily Sage on Cadiz Z, in the outside ring.
Seven combinations from the 12 starters made it through to the second round, where the majority delivered double clears round a flowing jump off track on day one of Royal Windsor Horse Show.
From midfield, John Crippen delivered a very competitive bid with Tim Peake’s talented Benny’s Kelly, which overturned the lead by more than 5 sec.
But it couldn’t quite hold off a challenge from Emma-Jo, who rode a forward and determined line to the last on the naturally quick Kimba Time to find an extra 0.56sec.
“I thought John was going to win it but he did nine strides to the last and Emma did eight, and that’s where she made up the time,” Kim said. “Before she went in, I just told her to go for it — she didn’t know how many strides she went on, she just went for it!”
Kimba Time is still in newcomers and has just started jumping at B&C level. She is out of the same dam as Kimba Castello, who is now being ridden by Holly Smith.
“I thought she had a chance of winning as she is really careful and really quick,” Kim said. “She’s been coming up through the grades nicely.”
Emma-Jo and John remained outliers 2 sec clear of the rest of the line-up, with Emily Sage collecting third place with Vogue TW.
Billy Stud-bred horses filled the remaining three places. William Funnell was fourth with Billy Jig and Lucy Townley sixth with Billy Hustle, who were both embryo transfer foals out of the same mare, Billy Sundance.
Melissa Gary slotted into fifth with Billy Elysng, who is owned by Sally Goding, winner of the opening day’s national 1.40m class.
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