Louise Simpson gallops into victory in the HOYS grade C championship

Louise Simpson lifted the Speedi-Beet grade C title in a strong 14-horse decider with Shane and Trevor Breen’s Irish gelding Hello Vivendi.

“He’s seven but a very inexperienced seven-year-old. Shane and Trevor are so busy they didn’t have time for him as he’s so green and asked me to ride him six months ago,” said Louise. “I thought he’d be shell-shocked here, but he handled it like he’d done it a hundred times before.”

Fourteen of the 30 starters reached the jump-off, but clears proved harder to come by in round two, with several falling victim to the penultimate vertical.

“It jumped easily in the first round, I don’t know why it caused problems in the jump-off, but [my husband] David told me to give that fence more time,” said Louise, who had pushed him against the clock a couple of times before this show. “

It’s no good coming here and not going to win. He hasn’t done much against the clock but I knew I could be tight to the double, he’s so scopey and I’ve got to know him in the last few months, I knew he’d jump out over the oxer easily.”

Spain is next on the agenda.

“He’ll do the seven-year-old classes for three week s in Oliva Nova for more experience. I think there’s a lot more to come, he’s improved so much so quickly,” added Louise, who won this championship in 2011 on Don VHP Z – now jumping 5* level with Harrie Smolders.

Robert Bevis’ earlier round on the eight-year-old Whitesnake mare Etude had broken the 40 sec barrier, but he had to settle for second, 0.72 sec behind Louise.

Third in the Foxhunter final earlier in the week, Richard Barton again slotted the eight-year-old Ukato daughter Donata into third. Tracy Priest was just 0.05 sec behind on Caruso D’Eres Z for fourth with Bryan Smith’s standard-setting clear on Dungimmon Sunrise taking fifth. Martin Arnott steadiest clear filled sixth spot with Sophie Heaven posting a fast four faults for seventh on Quite Like It.

Photos © Jumping Around