A phone call leads to victory at one of the final shows of 2020 *H&H Plus*

  • Show animals of the future ensure they’re heading into the 2021 term with overall accolades to 
their names as we report from the Thames Valley Welsh at Berkshire College (5-6 December)

    A coloured mare wrapped up her debut season unbeaten as she clinched the overall supreme ridden accolade. Emma Holder’s classy five-year-old native Worsenden Priscilla (pictured) rose to the occasion on only her third outing under saddle. Emma was first acquainted with Priscilla over the summer when she was at Ollie and Jo Burchell’s yard.

    “Ollie rang me and said I needed to come and see this young mare he had in,” said Emma. “I was adamant I didn’t need another horse as I’m so busy with clients but Ollie insisted that she was something special. I fell in love with her. She was super-green but she’s such a show girl; when she gets to a show she just rises to the occasion.”

    While Emma admits natives aren’t normally her ride of choice, she is hopeful about Priscilla’s potential: “She’s so smart, so fingers crossed we can campaign the qualifiers next year.”

    Attitude and limb

    Standing reserve ridden supreme was Rebecca Penny aboard Sandy Anderson’s Welsh section B stallion Thistledown Cadog. The five-year-old stallion, who is produced by Danielle Garner, picked up an early National Pony Society (NPS) silver medal ticket for 2021.

    “I’m quite excited about him,” enthused Rebecca. “He has a lovely front and lots of limb, which some section Bs can lack. Best of all, he’s got the temperament for the job. Today was all about seeing what we have for next year.”

    Danielle also led her own Welsh section B Thistledown Caribbean Joe to head his youngstock class and section title.

    Jake Thomas captured the in-hand supreme with the big-moving colt Ridgehill Lord Luther. The three-year-old Welsh section D stallion – who is owned by his breeders Steve Patch and Kevin Howdle – was on form throughout the day.

    “This was his final year in youngstock classes and even though it hasn’t gone to plan he’s done three shows and he’s won each time out,” said Jake. “Luther loves his job; every time he went in the ring he delivered.”

    Luther, who is by legendary stallion Gwenllan Brynmor, will be aimed at ridden classes in the future before returning to the in-hand circuit as a senior stallion.

    “I consider his sire to be one of the best, and Luther reminds me a lot of him,” added Jake. “He is a proper show horse.”

    Jake’s two-year-old daughter, Olivia, will be making her show ring debut next season.

    “Lead-rein will be a new venture for me; people keep reminding me I’ll have to run a lot slower!” he laughed.

    Jo Filmer’s Welsh section 
B stallion Longhalves Renoir 
was crowned Welsh supreme, while producer Aimee Devane 
led Connemara Blakehill Rebel 
to net the overall mountain 
and moorland in-hand championship.

    “He knows he’s special”

    Chichester-based Tammy Burge led her own coloured colt Moorfarm Bandsman (Bertie) to the in-hand part-bred tricolour. The three-year-old crowned off an impressive youngstock career which includes a win at the Royal Welsh, a supreme victory at Dorset county and a brace of bronze medals. Tammy, who has bred Welsh cobs for several years, bought Bertie – by Tiny Bit Famous out of Hilin Buddeg – as a foal from his breeder Donna McGregor.

    “I was sent a picture of him when he was still on the floor and I just knew I needed him in my life,” said Tammy, who has recently purchased Bertie’s full-brother. “I wanted a pony I could show myself – I struggle to keep up with the cobs these days – and a part-bred was ideal as we could still support the Welsh shows.”

    Bertie has his first crop of foals due in 2021 and will head 
off to be produced for the 
ridden circuit in the future.

    “I thought it would take years and years to win the 
Royal Welsh but he won at his first hit. Bertie knows he’s special; he’s always looking around to make sure people are watching him.”

    Ref: Horse & Hound; 17 December 2020

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