Matt Sampson is unbeatable at the Welsh Masters

Matt Sampson hit top gear at the Welsh Masters to claim an amazing double of championship wins – one with a chance ride he sat on just 10 min before the class.

He set off at the gallop and maintained the relentless pace to win the Graham Heath gents title by a commanding 2.62 sec with Billy Tortilla.

“He’s a proper trier,” said Matt, who also won the previous day’s qualifier on the consistent Billy Mexico/Vechta nine-year-old.

Bryan Smith’s early round on Dungimmon Sunrise in the 10-horse decider claimed second with Alex Gill on The Drawness in third. Harry Charles eased Valkiry de Zance into fourth with Robert Whitaker’s opener on Hicksteadt AEG taking fifth and Joe Trunkfield clinched sixth spot aboard Fabrice.

But Matt left the best until last, taking the top two places in the Paul George Sporthorses seven and eight-year-old. He won with catch ride Finnegan D, a Singapore/Cassini I seven-year-old usually ridden by owner Carron Nicol but handed the reins because she was suffering from bad back pain.And Matt claimed second in the final draw with the Evison family’s eight-year-old Ebolensky – the newly crowned Blue Chip Dynamic B and C champion.Laura Mantel claimed third on New Priory Stud’s seven-year-old Funnycan with Alex Gill on the eight-year-old Billy Fraulein in fourth. Keith Doyle and the eight-year-old Elmo Brown claimed fifth with Jake Saywell on the impressive seven-year-old stallion Quimari W sixth and Derek Morton picked up sixth with another seven-year-old, Aegis Water Cadenza.

Laura Mantel was on fire in Wales, taking the Graham Heath ladies title with an early draw in the 22-strong decider on Liz Howes’ home-bred Glory B V just 24 hours after topping the Martin Collins 1.40m grand prix qualifier.

The Caretino Glory/Animo mare stepped up to 1.45m in Vilamoura, Portugal, and it showed here.

“She’s jumped four classes since we’ve come back and won all four,” said Laura.

In the ladies, they finished 0.30 sec ahead of last year’s ladies title winner, Jane Annett and Pallas Masterclass. Faye Adams rode into third with Zozo CL just ahead of Vicky Burns on Denzel II. Nicola Barry took fifth aboard True Blue III and Alex Somerville-Cotton claimed sixth on Summer Promise.

Chloe Winchester commandingly galloped into victory in the NAF 1.20m championship with Sportsfield Our Clare, an Irish-bred nine-year-old at her second show since having a Cevin Z foal last year.

“She popped round a 1.10m last week and is soon up for winning,” said Chloe, on the former eventer she first rode four years ago.

Bryan Smith eased Corkhill Lad into second, 1.76 sec in arrears with Victoria Bennett in third on Rapho Ella. Angela Tate and Radley claimed fourth with fifth going to Philippa Wratten and Ginelli Z in the 22-strong jump-off.

Photos © Jumping Around