Tabitha Kyle was best Brit in the first competition of the Children European championships with Holly Smith’s Grennanstown Sarco Luxhill as the week kicked off in earnest at the Young Rider, Junior and Children European Championships in Zuidwolde, The Netherlands.
A mammoth 120 riders contended this speed class with Tabitha guiding the Shannondale Sarco St Ghyvan/Olympic Lux nine-year-old into fourth 1.65 sec behind the winner.
Other Brits finished down the order with Aimee Jane Jones on Zoverla and Chloe Lemieux with Freya posting steady clears and Amelie Gachoud returned on four faults with Evito. It puts Britain in equal first place with eight others at this early stage as they head into Thursday’s competition.
Ollie Tuff rode a super clear on Darino B in the first competition for the Juniors. A total of 111 started in this table C speed and handiness (four sec added for a knockdown) over a 12-fence 1.40m track with Ollie guiding the Verdi/Burggraaf 11-year-old into sixth spot 1.33 sec off the winning time.
Sienna Charles rode to orders to bring Chinta Van Geluut Z home on a clean sheet and into 12th place. Jack Whitaker was also clear on Scenletha while Olli Fletcher and Discko Boy DN made one mistake to add four sec to their time and Lily Freeman-Attwood added eight sec for two fences down on Karibou Horta. Britain stands in fifth on the current leader-board, but it is close with less than five faults between the top five. The Brits are on a score of 8.05 points, just 4.10 points behind the leaders Belgium with Ireland in second.
Will Fletcher was the sole British rider to return a clear in the first competition for the young riders. Seventy-nine riders tackled the table C speed and handiness over a 13-fence 1.45m course with Will coming home on a steady clear aboard Persimmon. Jodie Hall-McAteer was the fastest Brit but added four sec to her time on Salt’N Peppa and still finished slightly ahead of Will.
The other three Brits – Graham Babes (Boucheron), Leonie Aitkenhead (Jimmy Mack V Berkenbroeck) and Joe Stockdale, who nudged a solitary brick out of the wall on Don Diego De Plata, also added four sec to their time. Britain currently stands eighth in the team standings on a score of 12.74 points just over two fences behind the early leaders Belgium on 4.11 points.
Emma Stoker eased Q Seven into the runner-up spot in the six-year-old 1.25m two-phase to start the final week in Knokke Belgium.
Forty-seven contended this class with Emma and the Quaid/Stakkato gelding finishing 1.32 sec off the pace. Jay Buxton on No Fear Van Jonckhoeve and Jane Annett’s Impala also posted double clears for 12th and 17th.
Emma picked up seventh in the 40-horse seven-year-old 1.35m two-phase with Milton (Emerald Van’t Ruytershof/Heartbreaker) five sec off the pace. Jess Dimmock (Haitske) and Anna Wilks (Elton Van Het Exelhof Z) returned double clears for 16th and 17th places.
Isabel Saywell narrowly missed out on two wins. She was a tiny fraction off a win in the 1* 1.05m two-phase with Courage, the Ukato/Numero Uno 12-year-old finishing just 0.05 sec behind the pace for second. Stacey Willsone guided CSF Olympic Lady into fifth just ahead of Ellie Burrell-Squibb in sixth and ninth with double clears aboard Zalander and Zaronda II.
And Isabel also finished second in the 34-horse 1* 1.15m two-phase on the Con Air 14-year-old Con Chilli just over two sec behind the winner. Stacey Willsone also returned clean sheets to guide Cirrus and Varo M into sixth and 12th.
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