Kerry Brennan lands the grand prix at Bury Farm


Kerry Brennan scored a handsome double with her consistent, eager partner Wellington M at Bury Farm’s winter classic, heading both the winter 1.35m and the grand prix and beating Laura Renwick into second place on both occasions.

Twenty-five tackled course-designer Phil Ashworth’s 11-fence grand prix track with he majority of the fences falling in the latter half of the course. But an eventual six got all the right answers to access the jump-off, Laura claiming two of the rides. But Kerry and ‘Wellie’ were on form, the feisty now 16-year-old (Quidam De Revel/Cash) relishing the tight turns, spinning on a sixpence and motorbiking the corners to win with 1.93 sec to spare.

In the event, only one other double clear was produced, Laura guiding Sharon Whiteway’s Nabab De Reve/Carthago Z eight-year-old Novita Jovial Z into second place and picked up third on Friso with four faults after the final rail of the combination (now a double) fell. Rose Moss finished fourth on Carlos F with Danielle Cuomo aboard Quality Street III in fifth and Ben Walker on Fygo Von D’Oue Grint too sixth.

Kerry had fired a warning shot on day one with victory in the 27-strong winter 1.35m. Twelve reached the jump-off with the pair firing on all cylinders to win with more than five sec to spare over Laura and her home-bred Arko/Heartbreaker eight-year-old Arkuga. Four provided double clears, James Winter claiming third on new ride Bart VI and Ben Walker took fourth aboard Warriors Crème. Laura had three in the jump-off but hit the last with Friso and the first on Novita Jovial Z to drop to fifth and sixth.

And Laura again had to settle for a lower place in day three’s 1.40m as Adrian Speight glided into the top spot on Judith Whitham’s Millfield Baloney. Eighteen contended this speed class with Adrian and the Balou Du Rouet 13-year-old taking the win by 1.51 sec. Laura finished second on Friso and third aboard Novita, posting the fastest time by more than three sec but at the expense of a rail.

Laura Renwick hit form in the winter six-year-old, taking the top two places with two promising mares. Twenty-one of the 35 starters produced round one clears to tackle the jump-off but Laura was unbeatable, triumphing with the home-bred Symphony II (Parco/Tristan De Quelen) – also winner of a newcomers – and taking second on the German-bred Claretina (Clarimo/Caretino), 2.47 sec separating the two. The Renwick connection didn’t stop there – Laura Mantel claimed third on Laura Renwick’s MHS Alabama and Laura Renwick herself finished fifth on third ride Innuendo just behind Emma-Jo Slater in fourth on Kimba Uttah.

Laura Renwick also featured in the winter seven-year-old but had to concede victory to Zoe Potter and the aptly-named Wings Z. The 26 starters were reduced to 10 for the jump-off, Zoe and the Washington/Amethist mare taking the win by 0.67 sec over Laura’s Maverick (Diamant De Semilly/Heartbreaker). Chris Franks netted third on Warrior Queen and Harry Bateman on Greta Garbo finished fourth.

Ben Walker headed day two’s 1.40m with Emma Ziff’s Fygo Van D’Ouwe Grint. Just three of the 21 starters reached round two and all three made one mistake to finish on four faults, Ben the fastest by 0.22 sec to win on the Indoctro/Pierrot nine-year-old. Helen Tredwell finished second on Funnycan and John Crippen lined up in third with Basic.

The Champagne Cave winter B and C qualifier produced an unusual result as Michael Potter and Declain Irvine claimed equal first to take the two Hickstead qualifying places. Ten of the 34 starters accessed the jump-off with four double clears achieved, Michael and the talented Emerald Van’t Ruytershof/Lupicor seven-year-old Haya Loma N – the current Big Star six-year-old titleholder – posting a quick target.

But a problem with the timing with the round of Declan Irvine’s Dutch-bred nine-year-old Fendiela meant the judges put both competitors equal first. And Michaela Webb took an additional qualifying place at this show with third place 1.77 sec in arrears of Michael on Stellar Skylight – a German-bred 10-year-old who is no stranger to the Hickstead arena as winner of last year’s SEIB winter novice final and a 2018 B and C finalist.

Tony Pearson took the win in the SEIB winter novice to secure a prestigious Royal International ticket with Kerry Grimster’s Seapatrick Cardento. Twenty-one of 57 starters provided initial clears to go forward to the jump-off, but the lure of the clock proved the downfall of the majority and only two double clears were found to take the two qualifying places.

Nonetheless, Tony underscored his form by proving the fastest of the lot, forging ahead to take victory on the Cardento/Heritage Fortunas six-year-old with 0.59 sec in hand. Harry Bateman rode Teza Englefield’s Bellagio eight-year-old Lex Lokoda into second for the other qualifying place. Michael Fursedonn was only 0.20 sec behind the winning time but a rail down on Newton III proved costly and dropped him to third. Emma-Jo Slater finished fourth on Cosmic Jaxx with Ciaran Flynn aboard Teistaire Pleasure in fifth and Jassy Pyke picked up sixth on Bon Amego.

Harry came to the fore in the Blue Chip Dynamic B and C with Jackie Jones’ seven-year-old Grey Top daughter Greta Garbo. Nine of the the original 37 entries – all grade B horses – came forward to the jump-off with Harry clinching the top spot by 0.65 sec. Joseph Stockdale guided the 12-year-old EIS Floriane Z into second ahead of Julian Mincher with DoubleM Chacco in third, Harry Bateman was fourth aboard Anvils Every Little Helps and Emma-Jo finished fifth with Freule TN, winner of the preceding 1.20m.

Helen Tredwell topped the winter grade C with Colin Garratt’s seven-year-old Sheraton/Amethist mare Hannelina in a six-horse decider with 1.90 sec to spare. Julian claimed second on the seven-year-old Chacco Lover/Quick Star stallion DoubleM Chacco and Constance Copestake produced the only other double clear for third on Denver XI.

Charlie Dawson doubled up with TJM Henry De Reve, heading day two’s 1.30m almost two sec over Adam Ellery’s Ubank before taking the DDS Demolition 1.25m. Forty-two contended this single-phase class with Charlie and the Hermes De Reve 15-year-old taking the win by 2.22 sec. Tim Davies jumped into second on the Falco eight-year-old Lionel Van De Markieslanden ahead of Phillip Miller with Darona. Georgie Strutton picked up fourth on Gracefull W and Danielle Cuomo was fifth aboard Quality Street III.

Photos © Jumping Around & courtesy British Showjumping/SBM Photographic & Laura Reniwick

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