The sun made an appearance in Oliva Nova and the MET Spring tour finally got week one wrapped up with the re-scheduled classes. Caroline Breen, back in the saddle following the birth of Ollie, her second child, posted victory in the bronze 1.15m with new ride Ilka II, a 13-year-old It’s Me du Mesnil/Renoir I mare previously ridden by Ellie Meager. They galloped ahead to win by 1.33 sec.
Brits featured heavily in the line-up. Sophie Bennett guided Cirmosa into fourth with Stacey Willsone and Alsager in fifth. Ethan Bracken took seventh on Salento just ahead of Victoria Delvill-Cutts in eighth and ninth with Calypsos Handel Million and Tullaher Ella.
Just 0.70 sec denied another British win, Victoria Bennett settling for second in the bronze 1.30m speed on the Iroko/VDL Arkansas eight-year-old mare Raphoe Ella. Bethanie Knight was right behind in third with Cassalfino (Casall/Corofino II) and Aled Harding eased the seven-year-old Boss/Calvados stallion Foss into fourth. Gemma Wright and Ulrike van Overis finished 16th.
Bethanie also claimed seventh in the bronze 1.40m with the Quasimodo Z/Corofino I nine-year-old Quenotte. They posted a double clear to finish five sec behind the pace.
Jessica Oakes finished sixth in the bronze 1.25m speed aboard Oaks Vivette, an 11-year-old Vivant/Cassini I mare, some eight sec behind the pace. Four faults dropped Gemma Wright from a possible second to 12th with the seven-year-old On Board Candy.
Louise Simpson and Felix X (CS Online/Landadel) continued on their clear every day foray to take fourth place in the seven-year-old, finishing almost three sec behind the winner. Emma Stoker and Pembroke 3 jumped for clear and four to take 15th spot.
British-based Irishmen featured in the six-year-old with Trevor Breen one second exactly away from winning to take second on the Zirocco Blue VDL/Indoctro gelding Zilton SI Z. David Simpson was seventh on the Diarado/Gorial gelding Diarados Black Diamond and Britain’s Emma Stoker was also double clear for eighth on the Quaid/Perigueux mare Quatinka.
In the five-year-old, Ben Raistrick claimed fifth and eighth, jumping a double clear on Heaven Can Wait E (Up To Date/Cavalier) to finish 2.65 sec behind the winner, and Hessel (VDL Sheraton/Cantos) with clear and four. Emma Stoker slotted Grand Stakkato (Graf Top/Stakkato) into sixth place.