Harry Charles lands the big tour grand prix on the Spanish sunshine tour

For Harry Charles, the 24 hour delay of the Spanish sunshine tour’s 1.55m grand prix due to torrential rain was good news as the 18-year-old outpaced all his older counterparts to take victory in his first ever 4* grand prix on Controe. 

It was a bumper pay packet for the Charles family as Harry’s Olympic 2012 gold medallist Peter claimed third.

An eventual 11 of 49 made their way to the jump-off, John Whitaker most unlucky not to join them leaving all the fences up but incurring one time fault on Cassinis Chaplin during Sunday’s section of the class. Nonetheless, Britain was well represented in round two with seven of the 11 riders flying the Union Jack, but Harry was man of the match.

Peter had already made his bid with the OBOS Quality/Cruising nine-year-old ABC Quantum Cruise but cool-headed Harry maintained a forward pace and even rhythm as he negotiated the track.  He cut the corners tighter on the small but mighty 11-year-old Controe (Wender R/Iroko) to win the 16,300 euro prize with 0.49 sec to spare from France’s Olivier Robert on Eros. 

Peter was 0.39 sec in arrears on ABC Quantum Cruise. Spencer Roe took fourth on Wonder Why and a delighted Graham Gillespie filled fifth spot on new ride Andretti.  Phillip Miller also posted a double clear for seventh on Brendon Stud’s Unbelievable Lady while Ben Walker with Roulette H and Harriet Nuttall’s A Touch Imperious returned four faults apiece for ninth and 11th.

Peter was rightly filled with immense pride. 

“I’m so proud of Harry today, he rode well beyond his years and he was sensible in the jump off, working out where he could save time. He was cool and calculated and nailed it with precision. He beat me today and I honestly couldn’t be happier about that," said Peter. 

"My focus is on him - and my other children - all achieving their ambitions. Harry has an enormous talent and in my opinion is a future Olympic rider and medallist for Great Britain. I’m doing everything I can now to help him achieve that and we’re supporting him all the way. He has really proved himself stepping up in this way - it’s a really great day for the entire family."

Ellie Hall-McAteer was best Brit in the medium tour 1.45m grand prix with Crisanta.  Eighty-four initially contended here with only 10 coming forward to the jump-off, Ellie and the Caretino/Ramiro 13-year-old finishing 1.54 sec behind the pace.  Jess Dimmock was also double clear for seventh on Billy Blue Bell.  Five riders came home in round one on time faults only – four of them Brits.  Jodie Hall-McAteer took 12th on Coquin De Coquerie Z, Charlotte Ash was 13th on Ideal S, Sienna Charles was another on just one time fault for 15th with Chaitanya 2 and Joe Veitch came home on three faults for 16th on Art Candy.   



Jodie was in winning mode in the medium tour A 1.30m two-phase, holding off her 52 rivals with a 1.18 sec victory on the Vincenzo 11-year-old Colette.  Brandon Lovely eased Fantaland into fifth with Chris Smith seventh on Hard To Beat, Morgan Kent finished 12th on Farianne, Jodie also claimed 16th aboard Kobie and and Victoria Bennett posted the steadiest of the double clears for 23rd on Brandon.   






Georgie Crumley topped the small tour C 1.30m with Old Lodge’s Dulf Van Den Bisschop 11-year-old Haifa OL in a strong 28-horse jump-off, yielded from 71 starters.  The pair claimed a 0.32 sec advantage over fellow Brit Abbe Elliott (nee Burchmore Eames) on the Lupicor 11-year-old Casti Aneira.  Orla Morrin slotted Adonis into fifth with Sophie Bennett on Cirmosa in sixth and Hollie Pearce’s Delina II in ninth.  Clear and four dropped Andrew Davies on Centaura and Emily Llewellyn’s Exclusive down to 18th and 20th.

Brits filled five of the top seven places in the small tour B 1.20m speed, Victoria Bennett taking the win on the nine-year-old Raphoe Ella (Iroko/VDK Arkansas) by only 0.02 sec over Jake Ward’s Frederick VII.  Alice Codd guided Seapatrick Dougaleena into fourth with Victoria’s second ride Dircona in fifth, Kyle Bedford finished seventh aboard Georgie Ricci and Megan Bills was 10th on Gazelle.


Rachael Evison is on a roll with the French-bred 12-year-old Scylla D’Ouilly and the pair recorded another 1.10m win in the 28-strong speed class.  Fellow Brit Hollie Pearce was just a tenth of a sec behind for second on Ryans Hollie and Joe Veitch urged Sweet Shutterfly into fourth.  Anna Robins provided the steadiest of the clears for 12th on Korakoram UK Z and Sanda Nicol was 14th on Cobra Van Het Legitahof Z.  


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