Meet the top three horses in the Bicton CCI4*-L: ‘I sensed that he was a star in the making’ *H&H Plus*

  • Two of the horses in the top 10 at Bicton are out of the same mare and the winner was bought at a sale – find out more about those who topped the leaderboard

    Want to know more about the horses who topped the Bicton Horse Trials results? We have the lowdown on the first three in the CCI4*-L at this Chedington-supported event.

    Bicton Horse Trials results: winner JL Dublin

    The 10-year-old JL Dublin is German-bred by Diarado. Nicola Wilson chose the Holsteiner at the sales in Germany for his owners, Jo and James Lambert and Deirdre Johnston.

    “We went over and tried him and I thought he was very nicely put together and he has a lovely eye,” says Nicola. “He has a lovely technique over a fence and looked a fun horse.

    “Since working with him as a young horse, I sensed that he was a star in the making. But he was quite bullish, boisterous and very cheeky until he got to this level of training, when he’s really started to knuckle down and focus and use that energy in a positive way rather than against me.”

    JL Dublin has been well placed as he’s come through the grades – this was his 10th top-10 finish at international events, but his first win.

    Since taking 10th in his first CCI4*-L at Burnham Market last autumn he has really stepped up, with an open intermediate win at Oasby elite, a second at advanced at Aston-le-Walls elite and then a sixth in the hot CCI4*-S section at Aston-le-Walls.

    JL Dublin’s co-owner Deirdre Johnston is married to racing trainer Mark Johnston.

    “Mark will often ring Deirdre and say, ‘Well, are you winning?’ so we say, ‘Um, not quite.’ This week she’s been desperate for him to ring and say, ‘Well, are you winning?’ and he hasn’t asked!”

    Bicton Horse Trials results: runner-up Lordships Graffalo

    Lordships Graffalo, ridden by Ros Canter, is out of the same mare as Pencos Crown Jewel, who finished ninth for Ros in the same class.

    Pencos Crown Jewel, by Jumbo, was bred by Pennie Wallace, who owns the pair’s dam Cornish Queen, by Rock King. Pennie sold her as a foal to her current owners, Kate James and Annie Makin.

    Pennie then loaned Cornish Queen to Lordship Stud, hence why Lordships Graffalo has a different prefix. He is by Grafenstolz.

    “I’m so excited for the future with him and for his owner, Michele Saul — she’s been with me quite a few years now and it’s really lovely to have a great horse for her,” says Ros. “Pennie sent me Graffalo to break because I’d had Pencos Crown Jewel and then Michele was looking for a young horse and I said I’d really like her to buy this one.”

    Graffalo finished second in the eight- and nine-year-old championships at Burnham Market last year and recently won a CCI4*-S at Aston-le-Walls.

    Bicton Horse Trials results: Santiago Bay, third

    The 13-year-old Santiago Bay, by Ars Vivendi, was seventh at Burghley Horse Trials in 2019 and was aimed at the five-star at Luhmühlen Horse Trials before the German travel ban meant she was re-rerouted here.

    “She is really sweet and loving – she’ll cuddle you all day every day,” says Gemma Tattersall of Caroline Teltsch’s mare.

    “But she is also very sharp. I fell off her last week jumping at home when she stopped and whipped round! Then I went showjuming in the afternoon and qualified for Horse of the Year show so it was a real eating dirt one minute, qualifying for HOYS the next day.

    “That sharpness is partly why she’s so good – she’s got that killer instinct. When she’s at a competition she’s a real professional.”

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