Ellen Whitaker is leading show jumper at HOYS

Ellen Whitaker was launched firmly back in the spotlight on the final day of HOYS. After taking the Vinopolis speed horse of the year with the 17-year-old Kanselier in the afternoon, Ellen landed the prestigious leading show jumper of the year grand prix on Equimax Ocolado.

A potentially risky strategy of taking a wide turn to the second fence in the jump-off proved lucrative as she recorded the only double clear.

“I decided to take the gamble,” said Ellen, who was winning this coveted title for the first time.

Runner-up was Ben Maher (Wonder Boy III) while Nick Skelton slotted into third on Carlo 273.

The junior title went to 15-year-old Laura Robinson on her father Neal’s Paddy Power – a 10-year-old Connemara gelding.

“I didn’t think I’d done enough,” said Laura. “But ‘Archie’ was jumping brilliantly.”

Thursday’s Horse & Hound Foxhunter winner Sultan V was back in action in the grade C championship where another foot-perfect performance landed him a second title for Bruce Menzies.

“He was a bit sharp today,” said Bruce of Old Lodge’s British-bred seven-year-old. “I didn’t feel so confident going in but he’s ticking all the right boxes at the moment.”

So after five days of top-class action it is all over from the NEC, Birmingham, for another year. But don’t miss H&H’s 17-page special report, on sale this Thursday.

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