Charlotte Dujardin added a third national title to her week’s tally at the NAF Five Star Winter Dressage Championships. She scored 76.09% to head a strong leaderboard in the Charles Owen advanced medium gold final, aboard Imhotep.
The eight-year-old Everdale x Vivaldi gelding has only done a handful of shows under Charlotte to date, having previously been competed successfully by Sadie Smith, including finishing fourth at elementary at the 2019 nationals. Owned by Coral Ingham, “Pete” is proving to be an exciting horse for the future, and Charlotte was thrilled with his performance here, as she explained.
“He was such a good boy in there, I was really pleased with him, and it was mistake-free,” said Charlotte. “Pete is a bit of an inward worrier and can get a bit tense, but I can’t ask for much more as he hasn’t got the experience. Doing things like this is so good for him.
“Speaking to other riders, it seems a lot of people struggle with going in that arena – you think there’s not much for them to look at but, but for some reason, maybe the canteen above and the people around, it can be difficult for some horses,” she added.
A Portuguese rider and a sleepy stallion claimed the top spot in the KBIS prelim silver final.
Luis Vilhena piloted the five-year-old Millenium x Voice son Loves Black STH into pole position on a very good score of 74.65%, ahead of Lauren Crowe and Scout in second.
“He was at stud until a couple of weeks ago, so I’m really pleased with him,” said Luis. “He’s a very relaxed stallion; he can be hot if I ask for more from the higher levels – he’s like a different horse – but when I ride calmly he is calm and relaxed. even in the stables he doesn’t call to anyone, he just sleeps. He’ll sleep on your shoulder. He’s just a very sweet horse, and very special.
Luis bought the horse as a two-year-old from the Netherlands and said he was cheeky, and quite small, as a youngster, but has an exciting future.
“He is very talented for the piaffe and passage, and is doing the young horse classes at the moment. I think he is a horse for the higher levels – he can passage and then relax straight away to the walk with no stress, no tension.”
In the Prestige Italia novice silver, it was Georgie Nicholls who triumphed with Headmore Figaro, adding to her victory the day before in the Baileys Horse Feeds novice freestyle.
“He was just amazing again – I can take him an any arena and he just knows his job,” said Georgie, 19, of eight-year-old “Jack”, who is by Florencio.
The pair posted 74.69% to finish 2% ahead of second-placed Jack Morris and MFS Isabella Utopia.
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