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Winter Champs 2019


Finn Valley are National Champions for 2019!

After a very early start we arrived at Arena UK, the newish home for the Novice Championships and what a good move BRC made by securing this venue.  It really is very well laid out, easy to get to and the surfaces for the horses are excellent.

We had qualified our 80cm jumping team and two prelim and two novice dressage tests.  Our qualifying team of show jumpers from the competition in November at Wix were Julia Sheppard, Shirley Stagg, Emma Kelley and Joe Mace.  Unfortunately, Julia’s horse has been very poorly and was unable to come, so Emma Sayer who had come second individually at the qualifier was due to fill her space.  Sadly Emma’s horse then became lame and so Jess Mace on Willow very kindly stepped in. Jess had her lovely baby boy, Lincoln, eight months ago and hasn’t done much competing since then but she and Willow did a marvellous job.

The course had 15 jumping efforts including a double and a treble and was really twisty.  It was quite a task to actually remember the course! After the first round we ended up on a 0 score along with a few other teams.  The second round was equally as twisty and was quite a bit bigger. We accumulated 8 faults in that round along with one other team and so both teams  had to jump a third round, again over raised fences. Both teams finished on 4 faults and so it was all down to the time and after an excruciatingly long time, the judges worked out that our team had won!!  It was SO exciting.

Then there was a fourth round for those individuals who had double clears.  Both Emma and Shirley had double clears and so at the end of a very long day, they jumped again.   Out of the 99 competitors, 12 had double clears . Both Shirley and Emma jumped a clear round and at the final calculation, Shirley came 3rd and Emma 6th.  

Joe came 4th on Carrillion in the prelim dressage and Isabella on Quite a Compliment came 10th in the Novice 27.

Prize giving with BRC is very exciting.  All the horses are given a sash and a rosette and the team were given a silver plate to keep for a year.  They then get to do a lap on honour whilst the music from ‘The Horse of the Year Show ‘ is played. It’s great fun and the horses get really quite excited!

What a wonderful day we had!  Thank you to Julia Sheppard for once again organising everything for us so well and for Finn Valley for supporting us.  It is wonderful to raise the flag for our club.

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