It was an extremely exciting first day at the British Showjumping National Championships with 5 of the 8 rings in full flow. The Andrews Bowen Indoor Arena saw its first event of the show with riders competing in The Champagne Cave Senior Rider Championships – Preliminary round.
Competition was fierce with Norman Proffitt riding Valentino XIV a 13 year-old dark brown gelding owned by Nina Emery and Amanda Mcglynn with her own 10 year-old bay mare Anromeda III providing fantastic performances, setting the tone for the rest of the day. The end of the competition saw Anna De Verteuil with Jane Dexter's 14 year-old bay mare Belle Fleur sailing through to the next round as the overall winner alongside 12 other qualifiers.
The Andrews Bowen Indoor Arena managed to maintain the pace throughout the day with exhilarating performances from winners Jordan Thompson riding Christine Spanner's 11 year-old chestnut gelding Topflight True Carlo and Amy Inglis riding Samayava Ar Park a 9 year-old chestnut mare owned by In Showjumpers in the National U21 & U18 Championship Preliminary Round 1. The Blue Chip Pony Newcomers Masters was later won by Jodie Giles and Julie Pratt's 7 year-old skewbald mare Whos Bits N Pieces. Qualifiers from these classes also included thirteen others within the class.
The Arena also housed the Horzezone.co.uk Para Club Championships Final and the Anglo European Studbook Loose Jumping Championship which both wowed and impressed spectators.
Arena One also saw a fantastic start to the day with the National Pony 1.15m Member Cup Preliminary Round 1 showcasing some impressive pony and rider combinations. A particular treat for spectators was the fabulous round by Kristy Colclough riding David Wingrove's 9 year-old bay gelding The Mighty Mouse II who qualified first as a result. Spectators appeared delighted with the following class, the National 1.25m Restricted Rider Championship Preliminary, which saw Eleri Guy unfortunately pipped to the post by Jo Chipperfield after a brave performance. Arena One saw the day end with the thrilling National 1.30m Restricted Rider Championships Preliminary Round 1. This saw Carron Nicol launched into the next round.
Arena Two played host to the British Showjumping Business Partnership National 6 Year-Old Championship Preliminary Round 1 which provided spectators with an array of showjumping talent. Max Routledge went clear into the jump off and completed the course and cruising through to the next round. The crowd were greeted by some fantastic ponies in the Pony Restricted Rider 1.10m Championship Preliminary Round which brought the day to a close with Perdi Digby taking the title with a speedy time.
The Great British weather held out for what proved to be a fantastic testimony to young riders in the UK in the Amino UK National Children on Horses Championship Preliminary Round. Ms Olivia Poole impressed the judges and spectators and took both 1st and 2nd place qualifying spots with her mother Michelle's 11 year-old chestnut mare Zoverla and 8 year-old bright bay mare Chinook BH. Poole was joined by a further nine qualifiers. This class was followed by the National 128cm Championship Preliminary Round 1 which had the crowed on the edge of their seat, so to speak. Emelia Mitchell led the way through to the next round with two qualifying ponies, Jane Gibson's 18 year-old grey gelding Wyndham Tom Thumb and 14 year-old grey mare Time to Party.
Emma Jo-Slater took centre stage in the Grand Ring after taking victory in the KBIS Insurance Senior British Novice Championship Final and in doing so, set the scene for a week of great competition.
The Sankey Family Ring hosted the first Preliminary rounds for the Stepping Stones Championship with Aimee Jones riding James Aldred's 10 year-old strawberry roan mare Arrogan Emily T R through to tomorrow’s rounds. The Pony British Novice Preliminary Round One was won by Amelie Bush and Ghislaime Macdonnell's 10 year-old skewbald gelding The Nuke.
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