Posted on Thursday, April 25, 2013 by Heather Dodd
The sun shone on Rectory Farm (Duntisbourne Abbots, near Cirencester) for its first British Showjumping affiliated show on 1st April 2013, even if it was only for five minutes in amongst the freezing, unseasonal temperatures! Riders flocked to the show to test out the new venue, each hoping to win some of the generous prize money that was on offer in classes from British Novice up to 1.30m. International Course Designer Steve Williams built excellent courses and the team on site were impressed by how quick and easy it was to change around between classes and still end up with a different course for each class. 172 rounds were jumped throughout the day from 9am until 6pm, making the most of the lighter spring evenings and allowing time to start at 8am with a 85cm clear round for anyone who wanted a warm-up round.
The winner of the Thermohomes Europe Ltd National 1.30m was Cricklade based Johnathan Bowman riding Mrs Thompson’s Miss Clover Imp Diva and he also finished sixth with his own Marcel Des Rosier.
It was a successful day for the Fletchers too with Graham Fletcher who is based near Faringdon owning three of the top six horses in the 1.30m – Uragan second with Graham and Tina’s son William Fletcher, Promised Land third with Tina Fletcher and Bruce Almighty, fifth with Alfie Bradstock. Poppy Strange finished fourth with Jo Summerbee’s Vianty to break up the whitewash from the Bowman and Fletcher yards!
Mark Edwards took the top spot in The Horse and Hound Foxhunter First Round/1.20m Open riding his own Tinkers Tale while the 1.15m Open went to Jasmine Punter riding her own Clio V. Jay Halim had a one-two in the Equestrian Clearance Newcomers First Round with two horses owned by Bernice Strange – Guess Who’s Who taking first and Sunday Secret second. Johnathan Bowman did the same in the 1.05m Open, winning with Steve Valente-Smith’s Unite B III and taking second with Celeste Wilkins’ Lord B. The Discovery went to Sarah Hicks riding Inka (owned by Judy Hicks) and the British Novice was won by Ann Backhouse riding her own Swap It.
Riders and spectators had nothing but praise for the facilities and the organisers and a great day was had by all, except the first aid man who was rather bored (always a good thing) with just one faller who landed on his feet! One rider commented that being able to drive cars up to the edge of the arena for an aerial view at the top of the bank was a great perk for less mobile spectators or those who want to stay warm and dry in bad weather. With on-site catering, a picnic area from where you can watch the action, a mobile tack shop and professional photographers in attendance there was plenty to keep riders busy in between rounds. Even the biggest lorries had no trouble getting in with easy access off the A417 and a large area of hard standing to park on. Rectory Farm have six further BS dates planned for this year so visit the website to find out more – www.rectoryfarm.com