The National Gentlemen’s Final was decided in spectacular fashion in the Andrews Bowen Indoor Arena at the British Showjumping National Championships and Stoneleigh Horse Show.
The final was the last class of the evening and rounded out a day of fantastic competition. Robert Smith riding Ilton VD Spithoeve secured the win in spectacular fashion amongst a field of experienced competitors.
The course proved intense and challenged the riders to call on all their skill to navigate the formidable course.
Only three riders were able to complete a clear round and moved on to the jump off. The first rider to tackle the jump off was Theo Simpson riding Touch of Chilli, who was chasing his first National Gentleman’s Championship title. Theo took on the course in style putting in an impressive performance with a clear round finishing on a time of 42.85.
Next up to challenge Theo for the lead was Jay Halim riding VIP. Jay started the round clearly concentrating on executing a quick round attempting to save time with some strategic turns, however the result was 2 rails down and a time of 38.35.
The final contender was Robert Smith riding Ilton VD Spithoeve with the young horse showing talent beyond his years. The combination sailed around the demanding course to finish with a time of 42.85.
The talented stallion is only 7 years old and what is even more impressing is that he only started jumping this year. Robert purchased Ilton VD Spithoeve just after Christmas from a dressage yard and he quickly displayed an abundance of talent “we haven’t found much he can’t do” said Robert.
When asked about the pairs winning performance Robert said “he is very novice, I was just pleased with the way he jumped the first round. He is very rideable and is quite a quick horse although he’s not done much” said Robert of Ilton VD Spithoeve.
The National Gentleman’s Championship Final complimented its counterpart, the National Ladies Championship Final, that took place at the British Showjumping National Championships and Stoneleigh Horse Show earlier this week.
1st Robert Smith and Ilton VD Spithoeve
2nd Theo Simpson and Touch of Chilli
3rd Jay Halim and VIP
4th Douglas Duffin and Chiquito Z
5th Clark Glasgow and Orizon De Brunel
6th Lance Whitehouse and Dior V Overis Z
7th Matthew Sampson and Eagles Costalot
8th Conor Moore and Goodmans Acobado
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