The Equestrian.com Hickstead Derby Meeting, 23 – 26 June 2016

The Show Goes On!

By Stephanie DeWitt   Photography Julian Portch   #hickstead

Despite dampness, downpours and deluges, this year’s Equestrian.com Hickstead Derby Meeting went on as usual with the ground in the arenas holding up remarkably well.

William Whitaker was the third member of the showjumping family to add his name to the Boomerang Trophy, jumping a steady clear on Glenavadra Brilliant but incurring one time fault. Three horses and riders tied for second place with four faults apiece: Ireland’s Richard Howley, first to jump the infamous Derby course on Chinook, and Billy Twomey with Diaghilev along with Harriet Nuttall from Somerset riding A Touch Imperious.

“Having come second last year and second in other European Derbies, I’m so pleased to win with this horse,” said William. “The more times you ride a course, the better you get!  I knew I was a bit slow but, for a big horse, he’s a bit hot, so I took time to steady him on the course.”

Harriet Nuttall took the top two places in the Speed Derby with Silver Lift and Highland Cruiser II, Guy Williams having been stripped of second place because his two-time winner, Casper de Muze, was seen to have a spot of blood on his flanks at the end of their round.  However, Guy and the 14 year-old Casper retained their title in the Bunn Leisure Master’s Challenge, leaving all the ascending white gates standing in the fastest time of 44.85 seconds.

Hickstead’s Shane Breen took the Beethoven 7 & 8 Year-old Championship riding the 8 year-old Silbermond while there were two wins for Tracy Priest from Surrey on the first day of international competition: first place in the Bunn Leisure Derby Tankard on Penny Priest’s grey gelding Caristo VDL and in the Hickstead Novice Championship riding her own Caruso Deres Z.

David Simpson partnered with Gotti van Paemal won the Bunn Leisure Derby Trial, beating Surrey-based William Funnell on Billy Onslow and Shane Breen with Acoustik Solo du Baloubet in the jump-off with the only double clear. David shares a yard near Horsham with fiancée Louise Pavitt who won the Stoner Jewellers Vase speed class on Fiona vh Lemmenshof. The couple plan to marry next month.

Hopefully the sun will shine for them and the Royal International Horse Show at Hickstead at the end of July.