A gentle giant provides the high point of Katie Magee’s mixed weekend at Warwick Hall (4), plus highlights from Stafford (2), Burnham Market (2) and West Wilts (3)
Warwick Hall (4), Cumbria
IT was a case of two up, two down for novice section I winner, Katie Magee, whose end-of-weekend stats revealed a win, a fifth place, a fall and a withdrawal.
Katie’s winner was Angela Hislop’s imposing 17.2hh gelding, Treworra – a horse that makes his rider “smile every day”.
Treworra was bred by the Preci Spark stud and the now six-year-old started his eventing career with Oliver Townend.
“I’ve had him since January. He’s a big horse for me – I’m 5ft 4in – but he’s very adjustable and trainable and does everything in a snaffle. Even my four-year-old son can ride him,” said Katie, who events and teaches from her base in County Durham and is aiming Treworra at the six-year-old championship at Thoresby.
Treworra’s stable companion, Nelson De La Pomme, finished fifth in his novice section.
“The rest of the weekend is probably best forgotten,” laughed Katie.
Her third novice runner, Jellyon, slipped up on the cross-country and deposited his rider on the floor, while her BE100 entrant, Ditch Dancer, only managed to complete the dressage before “self-harming while tied to the lorry”.
Amy Simpson scored a brilliant BE100u18 double, taking section D with Jonjo Star and section G with Northern Echo.
“To win one section would have been amazing, but to have two was a very big surprise,” said Amy.
“My two horses are very different to ride. Northern Echo is like an overgrown pony with a very short stride, while Jonjo Star is the complete opposite.”
Amy, 16, has just begun an apprenticeship working at her family’s livery yard in north Yorkshire.
“I’d love to event full-time eventually,” she said.
Heavy rain in the days leading up to Warwick Hall meant the going was heavier than many had been used to in recent months. As a result the jumping phases proved influential and combinations able to keep a clean sheet were well rewarded.
Tricky youngster comes good
A MAIDEN voyage at BE100 led to a win at the Cooke Coachbuilders Stafford (2) for Emma Rarity and Kudu. The duo completed on their dressage score of 30.8.
“Kudu’s owner, Tracy Foster, sent him to me when he was four. He was a tricky youngster – spooky and excitable – and it’s taken a while to get him to where he is,” explained Emma, a freelance rider who runs her own small yard near Nantwich, Cheshire.
“But I could feel straight away that he had potential. Now, Tracy and her daughter Ellie do all the work and I just jump on him once a week.”
Ticking all the boxes
KATIE BARBER has waited a long time to breed a foal “the right size and stamp”, and her Burnham Market (2) open intermediate winner, Diamond Mine (Sylvie), has surpassed her expectations.
“Despite putting big mares to big stallions they’ve mostly come out at about 15.2hh,” quipped Katie, who has had “quite a few” attempts to breed an eventer that ticked the right boxes.
Diamond Mine’s sire and dam are both British-bred.
“Sylvie was the last foal from a stallion called Beau Diamond, who I did some intermediates with towards the end of his competing days,” explained Katie. “And her dam, Pembridge Sparkle, competed at the lower levels before becoming a broodmare.”
Sylvie is also a full brother to Katie’s first advanced horse, Western Ambassador.
“She’s quite low mileage for a 10-year-old, but being mine she was always left at the bottom of the pile while I rode owners’ horses,” Katie explained. “But I hunted her a lot with the Quorn before she started eventing, so that has set her up really well.”
The mare is now owned jointly by Katie’s mother, Hazel Brown, and Dawn Holmes.
“Both have been such fantastic supporters of mine over the years, so it’s lovely that they’re now involved as owners,” added Katie.
Chance encounter proves fruitful
LAUREN WEST had almost ditched her dream of competing at the top level, but a lucky encounter last winter gave her another shot at climbing the ladder.
“I had a very good horse that I competed to advanced, but when he retired in 2017 and another nice mare I was competing injured herself I was left with only youngsters,” explained the Burnham Market (2) novice section A winner, who abandoned the idea of becoming a professional event rider and instead trained as an estate agent.
“I love producing young horses, but I live for the buzz of riding at the higher levels. When I turned 30 I thought enough is enough and I need a proper job.”
Then Lauren bumped into the owner of her winning ride Valentino 46, Katherine Barker, at a local dressage competition.
“I loved the look of ‘Fergus’ straight away and cheekily mentioned to Katherine that should she ever want anyone to event him to let me know,” explained Lauren.
“She had bought him as a three-year-old from a Brightwells auction and produced him herself, but she didn’t want to compete above BE100.”
The pair have run six times this year and have a 100% jumping double clear strike rate. They also won a BE105 at Little Downham B (2).
HOPE PLEYDELL-BOUVERIE has big ambitions for her West Wilts (3) BE100 winner, Glenkeeran Willow, whom she bought at the end of last year from Vicky Brake.
“When Covid hit in the spring and then we were balloted from three events in a row, I did wonder whether we would ever make it out this year,” admitted the Wiltshire-based rider, who is about to embark on a master’s degree in sports analytics.
“I have my support team at home to thank for making all the juggling possible.”
The pair have novice in their sights next year.
“I’ve always wanted to produce a young horse for myself and I can’t wait to step up and show everyone what’s she’s made of,” she added.
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