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H&H showjumping editor Jennifer Donald: A team that excels under pressure

Few will be surprised to see Scott Brash (pictured) and Ben Maher on the British showjumping team for the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.

The world number one and three may be short of a horse or two this year, but Hello Sanctos and Cella have already proved themselves as key championship horses and the duo will be red-hot favourites for individual honours too.

It’s been a turbulent season, with team stalwarts such as Big Star on the sidelines, and Rob Hoekstra has been struggling for horsepower. But debutants Joe Clee and Spencer Roe proved again in Dublin why they thoroughly deserve a place in France and will both be riding horses they have produced themselves in Utamaro D’Ecaussines and Wonder Why.

This may be a young quartet but you can’t beat the experience of fifth squad member Michael Whitaker on your side. He returned to the fold in Denmark last year to help the team secure European gold and is brought in as the “senior” member of the squad.

There’s a lot riding on this championship but these guys excel under pressure. Could Great Britain become the first country to reign as Olympic, European and World champions?

They’ll certainly give it their best shot.

This column was first published in Horse & Hound magazine (Thursday 14 August)

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