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Mix up over HOYS wild card at Arena UK

Jessie Drea has picked up a wildcard for HOYS after the place was originally given to Graham Lovegrove.

Graham qualified for HOYS at the Arena UK Major Festival, where Jessie missed out by only one point.

But a note in the rules states that horses competing in the wild card classes must be registered grade A or B before 31 July – and Graham didn’t own Indiana 192 until August.

Graham was disappointed to miss out on the show this year – until he learnt today (Thursday 4 October) that he could compete after all.

After a Dutch rider, Wout-Jan van der Schans dropped out, Graham was back in.

“As a foreign rider dropped out at the last minute, we were unable to replace him so offered the place to Graham,” said a spokesman for HOYS.

“It was frustrating for Graham as the horse has competed internationally and is obviously of a high enough standard.

“We were thinking of removing the wording about the registration dates from the rules earlier this year, but didn’t, so decided to offer him the opportunity.”

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