Scotland top for young show jumpers

  • Scott Brash’’s first trip from Peebles to the London International Horse Show could not have been more successful. Partnering the seven-year-old Intertoy Z, Brash, 21, sped to victory in the Accenture Young Show Jumper of the Year competition. Jemma Kirk, also from Scotland, took second place with Tosca and third place on Balinteskin Lucky Girl.

    “”I thought he [Intertoy Z] jumped brilliantly in the jump off,”” Brash said afterwards. “He’’s a very big, powerful jumper –— very scopey. Luckily the track was big which suited my horse.””

    But Jemma Kirk put up a gallant fight until the very last moment. Only four combinations made it into the jump off, with Kirk qualifying on both her horses. Nicole Pavitt and Amaryllis van de Heffink were first in the arena but as one pole fell, the competition became a battle between the young Scots.

    Kirk and Balinteskin Lucky Girl finished clear but their 38.96 sec clear was immediately trumped by Brash and Intertoy Z, who stopped the clock on 37.14 sec.

    It was an anxious moment for Brash as Kirk entered the arena for a second time, aboard Tosca. “”I thought she was going to win,”” he said. But her 37.14 sec time was only good enough for second place, and Brash was crowned Accenture Young Show Jumper of the Year 2006.

    Although the £300 first prize is not enough even to cover the diesel back to Scotland, Brash is thrilled by the result. “”It was my aim for this year,”” he said.

    After starting his riding career in the Pony Club, Brash went to train with Paul Barker for a year when he was 18. He then set up his own yard in Scotland with the help of his father Stan, who owns Intertoy Z and his other top horse Senette.

    Last year Brash won the six-year-old championship at the Horse of the Year Show with Senette, but today’s win marks his biggest accomplishment to date.

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