Showjumping highlights: ‘A winning machine’ *H&H Plus*

  • Sally Goding cleans up with a plethora of wins at Keysoe, while John Crippen is building up an exciting team

    Keysoe, Beds

    Sally Goding enjoyed a terrific weekend at Keysoe, where her victories included both 1.40m open classes on Corbeagh Luxor, a 1.30m win with Nintendo Van De Ijse and Foxhunter victory on Cooley Pot Of Gold.

    “It was a good show and I was very happy with all the horses,” said the Sussex rider.

    Sally is a busy lady. She currently has six horses in at her yard, plus another 10 she competes for Irishman Mark Dorgan.

    “Luxor originally came to Mark to sell, but he has a unique way of going and no one could get on with him,” explained Sally. “It’s worked out well because Mark bought him and I now have the ride. As long as I leave Luxor alone and don’t interfere, he does everything I ask.”

    Nintendo Van De Ijse was bought by Sally and her mother as a four-year-old. Now seven, the Belgian-bred gelding has taken time to produce.

    “He’s sharp and it took a while to get to grips with him. It was only last season that he started to show what he could do,” said Sally.

    “Cooley Pot Of Gold is a little winning machine and has won five Foxhunters since we returned from lockdown.”

    Keysoe has been busy, and John Crippen was on form at the earlier midweek show. He added a 1.40m open win on The Flying Fox III to his earlier 1.20m victory with Half Of My Heart.

    These horses are owned by Patricia Brown and Bernice Brooks, both of whom are hoping for a return to normality next season.

    “They love the county circuit, so that’s what we’re aiming for. I have a good team for those classes now,” said John.

    Rectory Farm, Glos

    Eighteen-year-old Izzi Ryder had a spectacular show at Rectory Farm, where she won three classes against very strong opposition.

    “I think it’s my best result yet,” said Izzi, who rode In The Mood VHK to victory in the major class, a 1.30m open, over a field packed with international riders.

    “I don’t think I’ve ever known a local 1.30m class to be so competitive, but my horse is an absolute legend,” said Izzi, who acquired the son of Winningmood by chance in 2018 through her trainer Poppy Stronge, on whose yard she has been based since she was 10 years old.

    “It was my last year on ponies and we weren’t looking for a horse, but as soon as I saw him, I had to have him,” she said.

    It proved a good decision, as Izzi and her 12-year-old gelding have since been on a winning junior Nations Cup team and jumped clear in the grand prix at the recent national championships.

    Izzi also won the Foxhunter on Lupin II and won the 1.20m open section of the same class with Coco Chanell.

    “Lupin’s only seven and she’s a really nice horse. We’re very excited about her,” said Izzi, who inherited the ride on Coco Chanell when her sister Anjelica went to university.

    “I’ve just finished my A Levels and I’m going to have a gap year. My parents want me to go to university too, but I’d rather be a showjumper. We’re ‘in discussion’ about that,” she added.

    Cherwell Competition Centre, Oxford

    Sophie Fawcett has returned from lockdown in top form, and the Northampton rider paid a lucrative visit to Cherwell, where she won the Foxhunter on Halidas Whisper before taking the top two places in the 1.30m open on Cedric and Calson.

    Sophie is a renowned producer of young horses and she has high hopes for six-year-old Halidas Whisper, who was bred by Mennell Watson and Helen Van Heyningen by Whisper In The Wind out of former Horse of the Year Show grade C champion Halida Du Rouet.

    “I’ve only had her a month and this was our second show, but we have bonded already,” said Sophie.

    By contrast, this is Sophie’s fifth season with eight-year-old Cedric, whom she has produced from a four-year-old.

    “He’s an absolute poppet. No matter what I ask, he says, ‘I can do that,’ and tries his heart out,” she said.

    Calson, a Casall x Clarimo seven-year-old, has also been with Sophie since he was four. “I know I shouldn’t have one, but he’s my favourite. He’s scopey and careful and I’m really excited about him,” she said.

    Timely celebrations for Whinnett

    Chris Whinnett lives within hacking distance of Bury Farm, and the rider who recently celebrated his 19th birthday returned home with wins in the newcomers and 1.30m open classes.

    His newcomers winner was a brand-new ride in MP Laser Light, an Irish-bred eight-year-old who arrived on his yard only a fortnight before.

    “He’s a lovely horse, but he’s with us to be sold, so I don’t know how long I’ll have the ride,” said Chris, who won the 1.30m class on Freak I, a Dutch-bred gelding he has had for a year.

    “We bought him from Glynn Slater so I could jump some bigger classes and he’s been really consistent. He’s exactly what anyone would want in a horse,” said Chris, who rides 10 horses at the family sales yard every day.

    “I think you could say that it keeps me busy,” he joked.

    Ref Horse & Hound; 3 September 2020