James Pratt enjoyed more success at Horseheath as the racecourse held its second British Eventing-affiliated horse trials at the weekend.
The Suffolk-based rider repeated his successful run at Horseheath following a win last year on his own Willy Limerick, although he had to settle for second place with the same horse this year.
He did go on to win Section BE100, however, with Churchside Reflection aka Lex, owned and bred by Deirdre Hunt.
It was another smoothly-run event thanks to Thurlow Estate’s Tim Barling and his committee and army of volunteers.
With April being surprisingly dry, it meant that the run up to the event involved substantial ground works — aerating and irrigating — in order for the ground to be in perfect condition for the weekend.
Team GBR’s Sarah Bullimore gave her beautiful Reve Du Rouet the day off, while she showed a smart youngster Starbucks II aka Gary, the ropes of the BE90.
Kitty Marlow was one of the youngest competitors, aged just 11, and completed her sixth BE event this year, coming fifth in the BE90 on Kynaston Kittiwake, finishing on a score of 34, with a dressage score of 28.
For the majority of the competitors the cross country was their best phase, with many of them commenting on how well presented the course was and how well it rode.
Caroline Smith, winner of the BE90 Section E, commented that ‘the cross country was beautifully presented’ and that the ‘ground was superb’.
Lisa Howlett, winner of the BE90 Section K, also spoke highly of the course: “It was a beautiful course with good ground,” she said.
Four Wobbleberries took on their debut BE event to show support for Hannah Francis’ Willberry Wonder Pony Charity, which is a charity close to the whole eventing community’s heart.
The charity have already raised a staggering £143,147.93 so far, with all of the Wobbleberries achieving double clears, with Ashley Harrison winning BE80 Section L, Maddie Peal coming fourth in BE80 Section M and Liz Frazer just missing out of the placings due to showjumping time faults.
The spectator entry fee of £5 per car will be donated and split between the Air Ambulance Service and Maggie’s Centre Cambridge.
The Maggie Centre helps families of cancer sufferers, while The East Anglian Air Ambulance do amazing work saving lives across the region.
On behalf of the family, Tim Vestey, said: “We were delighted to be able to continue and develop our affiliation with British Eventing and, with the help from Tina, David and our sponsorship partners, build a spectacular brand new course for 2017.
“The feedback from the equestrian community has been absolutely overwhelming.”