Howley does the double at Weston Lawns End of Season Bash *H&H Plus*

  • Richard Howley enjoys a successful show with a new ride, while Douglas Duffin has high hopes for his Foxhunter winner at Weston Lawns...

    RICHARD HOWLEY commanded a victory double with panache on new ride Matrone VD Donkhoeve, taking both the talent seekers and British Horse Feeds Speedi-Beet grade C qualifier at Weston Lawns End of Season Bash (10–13 September).

    The pair finished with more than two seconds in-hand in both the 27-horse talent seekers decider and the following day’s 22-horse grade C jump-off at their third show together.

    “I bought her two months ago but she’s done little through Covid-19 and I stepped her up this week. She’s naturally quick with a big stride and loves to run and jump,” said Richard of the super-easy Elvis Ter Putte x Canaletto eight-year-old purchased from George Whitaker.

    “She goes in a snaffle, has a good mentality and is a fighter in the ring – she wants to win and that always makes it easier for the rider. I’m looking forward to taking her abroad and jumping 1.45m classes. She’s taken it all in her stride so far and is ready to step up again – she has a bright future,” added Richard, who was impressed with the steps organisers had taken over coronavirus.

    Harry Wood claimed second in the talent seekers on the Baloubet Du Rouet 11-year-old Salvador V with early leader Faye Adams third aboard the Spartacus nine-year-old Gladiator VI.

    James Smith settled for second in the grade C on the Double Up 2 x Indoctro eight-year-old HBF Delmar with Adam Botham picking up third on the nine-year-old Bruno.

    Douglas Duffin landed the top spot of the Equitop GLME Foxhunter second round with Endyana EH Z.

    Only five of the original 56 jumped clear over course-designer David Cole’s track, with several tiring towards the end while others found problems in the combination. Danielle Ryder – also through to the newcomers final – opted to withdraw Sam VD Tojopehoeve Z at this point to leave a four-way decider.

    Nigel Coupe set the target in the opening draw on Creevyquinn Alice, but Douglas – who travelled down from Scotland for this show – spotted an inside turn to the final oxer and secured the win with almost 10 seconds in hand.

    The consistent Emerald x Farmer nine-year-old Endyana EH Z, who qualified for talent seekers and jumped double clear in the grade C, came from Ailsa Black last year.

    “Ailsa did a great job producing her slowly as she’s a big mare and needed time to grow. She’s uncomplicated with no quirks, loves jumping and wants to please and do the job. Now she’s ready to move up and I’m so excited for her future – she’s going to be a top grand prix horse,” said Douglas.

    Nigel was second on Candice Reilly’s Alice, a Dallas VDL x Cavalier Royale seven-year-old he has ridden for 18 months.

    “She is a bit of a personality and can be grumpy at home, but that changes in the ring. She has improved immensely from discovery level in 18 months and she jumps a lot clears,” said Nigel. “She’s a proper one.”

    JESS BOTHAM made the most of her final draw to take the 17-horse decider in the 88-strong Lord & Lady Equestrian newcomers second round at Weston Lawns End of Season Bash on Jayne Andrews’ Fairmont III to win by just 0.03sec over long-time leader Charlie Dawson on the Untouched seven-year-old Iloma.

    Jess sought this Catoki x Calido six-year-old from Adolfo Pacheco – who was based with Michael Whitaker some years ago – and sold her to Jayne in May but has taken the ride back for the past six weeks.

    “The newcomers final had always been our aim for this year and I wanted to get going with her again. She’s brave and scopey with loads of stride – she needed it in the jump-off and helped me out,” said Jess.

    “Nothing fazes her, she went from small shows at Onley and Weston Lawns to Bolesworth and Hickstead without turning a hair. We trained over water at home but I knew she wouldn’t spook and brought her straight here – she’s a proper one.”

    Seventeen of the initial 49 accessed the jump-off of the Cheval Liberte grand prix, but Olivia Poole’s early round on Quality got the win sewn up.

    “She’s my dream and has gone from not jumping a course to winning a 1.45m grand prix in five years,” said Olivia, who bought the Quirado x Casiro I 10-year-old by chance in Germany.

    “I was trying another horse and saw her in the stable with her back to me but there was just something about her. Within 30 seconds of sitting on her I knew she was the one for me, and had to persuade my non-horsey parents to buy her.

    “She can be anti-social but she’s a mare with attitude. In the ring she’s such a trier, but I really didn’t expect to get to this level.”

    Chris Whinnett scored five wins over the four days of the Weston Lawns End of Season Bash, winning two 1.30m classes and a 1.25m on the Numero Uno x Animo 10-year-old Freak I and a double of 1.20m victories with the Cruisings Micky Finn nine-year-old Scarthill Cruise.

    Holly Gair also took home a fair haul of red rosettes in the smaller classes. The evergreen 24-year-old mare Bowes Milky Way scored four wins with three 1m classes and a 90cm while The Echo Factor nine-year-old LGS Survivor topped two 1.05m competitions.

    H&H 24 September 2020

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