Merrist Wood, Guildford, Surrey, 25 November
Featuring riders Natasha Powell-Richards, Sarah Ridd, Hannah Bown, Susie Hexton, Jessica Bird, Lisa Harrison, Kay Swabey, Teghan Cantrell, Hayley Pile, Immogen Chant, Imogen Byers, Amy Jack, Jess Gale, Zoe Harrison, Hiedi Marcus and Suzanne Holt
PONY knowhow is standing 15-year-old Natasha Powell-Richards in good stead. She has formed a strong bond with stallion Cyden Oosting Amigo and the pair confirmed their current medium form with overall wins in both tests on 70.86% and 68.87%. Non-qualifier judge Jackie Selway commented: “Natasha’s pony was very forward and balanced and she and rode it into a nice connection. You had confidence right from the beginning that she would ride a nice test. She came in meaning business.”
Amigo will be competing in pony classes this coming season and has started changes so Natasha also hopes she may do some advanced mediums, too. Owner Lara Edwards commented: “Natasha was recommended to me by Amigo’s previous rider Clare Hole and her talent at producing her own Bernwode Britvik herself convinced me she was right for him. He’s a young stallion, not that experienced. I wanted a rider who wouldn’t let him learn bad tricks but bring him on successfully.
“I like her calm approach. I watched her when Amigo spooked at Addington. She patted him and carried on and that’s exactly what a young horse needs. They need to gain confidence from their rider.”
In the gold section, Sarah Ridd also scored a double with 69.13% and 68.22% riding Weymarsh Sabrina. The Showtime x Rubin Royal 10-year-old’s career has been dogged by allergy problems and following a bout of COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and consequential lung infection this summer, Sarah decided to invest money in allervet immune therapy.
Sarah reports: “A couple of weeks after starting treatment she was a different horse but still run down from the infection so I started her on a fittening programme. Six weeks ago when I took her on a bridleway around the hilly Bramley golf course she was feeling so well she bolted with me — the first time a horse has got away from me in over 20 years. She still had her breath after three-quarters of a mile. There were only a few weeks left for winter qualification but I decided to give it a go.”
Hannah Bown has also been on “a mad dash” to qualify with her 2016 and 2017 Winter Championships partner Sandro’s Storm. They achieved a plus 67% second and third places in the Medium 63 and 71 silver sections. The Sandro’s Dance x Lanthan eight-year-old has only recently returned to work and competition after spending four months this summer recovering from an operation.
Hannah explained: “Just before Hartpury we noticed that ‘Stanley’ had a
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