Chris Smith takes the seven-year-old final at Weston Lawns
Weston Lawns young horse championships drew some quality horses and consequently, the finals were hard-fought.
Chris Smith topped the seven-year-old title on the Carthago Z/Quidam De Revel stallion Cargot Z. A total of 16 horses from a startlist of 30 reached the jump-off, with Chris ensuring his early lead was an unbeatable one, smooth lines at a deceptively fast pace securing victory in the fifth draw.
Last-to-go Rhys Jones was the closest challenger on the Wheaweij De Landetta/Lester gelding El Wee Widge, but they were just two hundredths of a sec off the pace for second.
Joe Trunkfield took third on Domino VII, a Darius/Sandro’s Whisker gelding, with Alex Thompson on Cadence Dreamer in fourth. Joe Clayton aboard Ballinteskin Eye Catcher claimed fifth and sixth was awarded to Lucy Turner on Fantasy II.
Holly Smith netted yet another six-year-old title with the Irish-bred Grennanstown Sarco Luxhill. The Shannondale Sarco St Ghyvan/Olympic Lux gelding headed Chepstow and Allington age classes, won the winter grade C final at Bolesworth and is also through to HOYS in the Foxhunter final.
“He’s a big, rangy horse – over 17hh – but he’s very easy and very careful,” said Holly, who also took fourth on the Luidam/Cruising mare CSF Olympic Lady.
Laura Mantel chased hard on New Priory Stud’s newly crowned Hickstead winter novice champion to finish 0.23 sec in arrears for second. And Jamie Wingrove eased the impressive Heartbreaker mare Heartstring into third.
Alex Thompson claimed fifth aboard Falausca Fortuna and Carron Nicol was sixth with Zeusland.
In a boost for British breeding, the top three five-year-olds were all home-bred. A quick round from Joe Trunkfield on Outcome netted the five-year-old title in a very competitive jump-off. This mare, bred by Mennell Watson and Helen van Heyningen by their stallion Outcast, started competitive life last October and already has her newcomer double clears.
“She’s very consistent, like one born again, it definitely feels like she’s been here before,” said Joe, who broke this mare in.
Carron Nicol was just a fraction behind – 0.40 sec – to take second on Moonraker, a stallion by Fantaland. Sam Wall was third on Shaw Farm Stud’s Arko Boy daughter Harriet with fourth going to Ajai Appachu on Niquita CP Z, Amanda Forster taking fifth aboard Granite V and sixth awarded to Rhys Jones on Galveston.
A last-minute decision to contend the 1.40m paid handsomely for Louise Saywell, she won it in fine style on the Darco 15-year-old stallion Mr Darcy.
“My daughter Vicky was riding Darcy in a small class earlier in the morning and just had the last fence down,” said Louise’s partner Graham Lovegrove, “and then we realised the 1.40m carried a £500 first prize. Louise hadn’t got any riding gear with her, so she borrowed Vicky’s and made a quick change!”
Mennell Watson took second in the 17-strong decider – yielded from 42 starters – with Helen van Heyningen’s eight-year-old Cobretti/Mr Majestic stallion Whisper In The Wind, 0.96 sec in arrears, and sixth with Outcast.
Jamie Wingrove took third and fourth on the Grandeur eight-year-old Grupello Z and the Nintender eight-year-old The Drawness, with Bumble Thomas fifth aboard Ciandro.
1 Chris Smith & Cargot Z – 0/0 32.29
2 Rhys Jones & El Wee Widge – 0/0 32.31
3 Joe Trunkfield & Domino VII – 0/0 32.95
4 Alex Thompson & Cadence Dreamer – 0/0 33.35
5 Joe Clayton & Ballinteskin Eye Catcher – 0/0 35.75
6 Lucinda Turner & Fantasy II – 0/0 36.36
1 Holly Smith & Grennanstown Sarco Luxhill – 0/0 30.25
2 Laura Mantel & Funnycan – 0/0 30.48
3 Jamie Wingrove & Heartstring – 0/0 3`.45
4 Holly Smith & CSF Olympic Lady – 0/0 32.94
5 Alex Thompson & Falauca Fortuna – 0/0 34.39
6 Carron Nicol & Zeusland – 0/0 34.60
1 Joe Trunkfield & Outcome – 0/0 34.27
2 Carron Nicol & Moonraker – 0/0 34.67
3 Sam Wall & Harriet – 0/0 36.10
4 Ajai Appachu & Niquita CP Z – 0/0 37.28
5 Amanda Forster & Granite V – 0/0 38.88
6 Rhys Jones & Galveston – 0/0 39.20
1 Louise Saywell & Mr Darcy V – 0/0 41.66
2 Mennell Watson & Whisper In The Wind – 0/0 42.62
3 Jamie Wingrove & Grupello Z – 0/0 43.74
4 Jamie Wingrove & The Drawness – 0/0 48.08
5 Bumble Thomas & Ciandro – 0/0 49.84
6 Mennell Watson & Outcast – 0/4 43.52
Photos © Jumping Around