Native ponies of all breeds are tested over the working hunter track on the third day of competition
A stunning display of natives was witnessed in the Frogmore Arena on Saturday morning at the 2021 Royal Windsor Horse Show, as a Fell pony gelding and his young pilot took top honours as a worker.
16-year-old Chantelle Chapman and her mother Victoria Oliver’s Fell pony gelding Greenholme Falcon (Dan) were judges Caroline Whiteley and Kevin Walker’s choice for the overall mountain and moorland (M&M) working hunter pony accolade.
The 10-year-old by Greenholme Look At Me out of Greenholme Shandy first achieved a flying clear in the 133cm section.
“This was his and my first time jumping here,” said Chantelle, who kept her cool in the championship, showing off Dan’s paces and accelerating gallop. “Considering this is his first year jumping open tracks, too, we came here with no expectations. He’s been a star and I just can’t fault him; he does it all.”
Chantelle and Dan shot to fame in 2018 when she won inaugural SEIB Search For A Star M&M championship. Since, they’ve been unstoppable in both open ridden and junior ranks, and have only recently forayed into the working hunter scene.
“They did three novice classes last year, and won all three,” said Victoria.
Chantelle added: “We had a 3am start today, but it’s been well worth it. The course was flowing and there was lots to look at which suits him better.”
“Dan’s got a little fan club and it’s lovely to be able to win it for the breed, too.”
Working hunter specialist Vikki Smith had a tough choice as she had two rides – Penny Sutton’s New Forest Lovelyhill Folklore and her own Connemara JP Corbally — through to the championship from the 143cm and exceeding 143cm classes, respectively. She opted to pilot the 10-year-old New Forest stallion, HOYS bound on the flat and in workers, who was selected for the reserve.
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