Watch Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro wow the crowds at Hartpury

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Report by Nicky Moffatt. Video footage courtesy of Hartpury College/Goldeneye

Charlotte Dujardin and the magnificent Valegro wowed the crowds in Sunday afternoon’s grand prix special at the Hartpury Festival of Dressage.

Despite a mistake in her one-time changes, the world’s number one gained a score of 87.765%, almost 12% ahead of second placed Fiona Bigwood and Atterupgaards Orthilia.

It was an early birthday present for the 29-year-old rider, who turns 30 tomorrow.

“I’m really pleased with Blueberry today,” said a delighted Charlotte, who rode six different horses at the event. “The mistake was my fault — I didn’t get his head up. I made the same error in the grand prix on Friday!

I do it every year — I go around making mistakes everywhere and then it’s like a wake-up call. It’s good for me to have that wake-up call before the Europeans, though.

“I think I was a bit too relaxed today and often I ride better when I’m under pressure.”

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Masses of Blueberry and Charlotte fans came to watch this combination in action, and after their final halt the audience erupted.

It’s lovely to have so much support,” added Charlotte. “I forget what a following we have because I’m just busy doing my job. It’s quite an eye opener — everywhere you look people are taking pictures of us.”

Fiona Bigwood rode a flawless test on the bay mare Atterupgaards Orthilia, to finish second on a score of 75.922%, while Portugal’s Goncalo Carvalho and the stunning Lusitano Batuta proved popular with the judges — and the crowd — to take the third spot on 71.882%.

Having Charlotte and Valegro at this year’s event certainly pulled in the spectators and was a great way for Hartpury to celebrate its 10th year of running the Festival of Dressage.

Don’t miss Horse & Hound’s full report from Hartpury Festival of Dressage, on sale Thursday 16 July