Five days of fantastic equestrian sport were served up at the 2023 Al Shira’aa Bolesworth Young Horse Championships from 16 – 20 August at Bolesworth Castle, Cheshire.
4yo Final Sponsored by Ashdale Sports Horses
59 four-year-olds qualified for the final by jumping a clear in one of the two qualifiers. 25 horses jumped clear in round one of the final, which put them through to a style and performance round judged by William and Pippa Funnell. Marks were awarded for technique, rideability and general x-factor, with points deducted for fences down.
Local Rider Tony French took the honours with his own and Danielle Ryder’s Urban Legend Z. The Untouchable 27 x Nabab De Reve Gelding was bred by Willem Van Hoof, and to William and Pippa looked just the type you could imagine cantering into a world class ring in the future. 18 horses and riders shared the double clear £2000 bonus. Runner-up spot was taken by the striking stallion High Offley The Colour of Money (By Fernando), owned and bred by Pat Morris from the High Offley stud. Taking third place was Rachel Proudley with the Impressive VDL stallion Ohorn Van De Renvillehoeve.
5yo Final Sponsored by Dallamires Stables
The 5yo classes were dominated by Joe Trunkfield who won the second qualifier on Sing Z, before finishing as the overall champion on the Copycat Z x Contact VD Heffinck gelding (owned by Joe). The top British-bred award went to third placed Lucy Townley and Billy At Last, bred by Donal Barnwell, and the £4000 triple clear bonus was shared by Joe Trunkfield with Sing Z, Nicole Lockhead Anderson with Quanthago PS, Angel Tough with Nicole IV, James Ingham with Vandro B, plus Ben Bick with Top Star C.
6yo Final Sponsored by Windmill Farm Estate
The 6yo classes were dominated by Ben Bick from start to finish! The first qualifier saw him win with Michelob, who qualified for Lanaken as a five-year-old last year. He took the top spot in qualifier 2 with Rhodiamant Roxanne and ended up taking the 6yo Final with NFS Corluga. Owned and bred by John Renwick, NFS Corluga was also the top British-bred, by Cornet Obolensky out of Laura’s top mare Beluga (Heartbreaker). The £4000 triple clear bonus was shared between Ben Bick (with NFS Corluga) and Joe Trunkfield with Verdettes Cicero.
7yo Final Sponsored by Al Shira’aa
The 7yo classes saw world class jumping throughout the week. Ben Bick took another victory in the first qualifier with Diamonds Diabolo Z, and Nicole Pavitt took the lead in qualifier 2 with Q-Pleasure Van Seven Oaks. However, it was Will Whitaker with Niel Fiddes’ Lancaster that took the final with the fastest of three double clears in the final jump off. Lancaster is by Tangelo Van Zuuthoeve and bred by The Vanderbosch family. The only combination to jump consistent clear rounds throughout the show, taking the Triple Clear round bonus was Serena Kullich on her own British-bred Benfield’s Victory, by Billy Congo, and bred by Daren Ward.
EvetDrug CSI 2* Grand Prix
60 combinations qualified for yesterday’s 1.45m LR Grand Prix. Raf Suarez continued a fantastic week that resulted in four clears: Chris Smith and Messarado Blue, 2022’s winners Carmen Edwards and Happy Valerie, Jennifer Billington and Flipper Darco UK Z, plus Mark Edwards and Flying Tinker II, followed by three clears with time penalties: Billy Twomey Diego Del Caribe, John Whitaker and new ride Donna Pascale, plus Chloe Winchester & Jupiter. The rest of the 15 that came forward to the jump-off brought forward four faults, other than Lorraine Lock and Artisan with five.
A very fast jump off finished with Mark Edwards last to go and taking the podium with his homebred Flying Tinker II, now owned by Marlene Edwards. Jennifer Billington jumped a super clear round to finish a close second, with Billy Towmey third, finishing on his single time penalty from round one, Chloe Winchester in fourth, finishing on two time penalties just quicker than fifth-placed John Whitaker, who also finished on his two time penalties carried forward from the first round. Quickest of the four faulters from round one was Oliver Fletcher who scored the fastest round of the class and finished 6th.
Nina Barbour, Managing Director of Bolesworth said: “We’d like to give a huge thank you to the Al Shira’aa team for their support during the week. The team had some great rounds and results, including an impressive first round in the 4yo final by Jason Fitzpatrick and Al Shira’aa-owned stallion King Leon Z.
“We would like to extend huge congratulations to Mikey Pender and Chacco Bay,who finished 3rd in the 1.50m jump-off on Sunday at the Valkenswaard Global Champions Tour. This result is a huge testament to the programme of breeding and production that they have established in the UK.”
Bolesworth Elite Auction presented by Gallagher
Friday 18th August saw 23 lots come forward including two embryos. The sale was a huge success for British Breeders, with 19 lots selling on the night.
The top price foal, JZ Coralina C (a filly by Cornet Obolensky out of world class mare Arera C) was purchased live at the auction, the hammer dropping at £47,000. Three British-bred horses scored the three next highest prices; Tornado De Wellbury (Colt – Toulon x Cento – £25,000), Just Call Me Love (Filly – Heartbreaker x Indoctro – £25,000) and Cristo De Wellbury (Colt – Cornet Obolensky x Baloubet Du Rouet – £26,000).
For more information about Bolesworth Elite Auctions, visit www.boleswortheliteauctions.com.
We now look forward to the 2024 Al Shira’aa Horse Show, taking place in Al Ain from January 9 to 14. This will be the seventh edition of the show, which under the vision, patronage and guidance of HH SSheikha Fatima Bint Hazza Bin Zayed Al Nahyan; Honorary President, the event has grown from strength to strength showcasing the best horses and riders from all over the globe. For more information visit www.alshiraahorseshow.com.