Eastern team takes title at Senior Inter Regionals

  • Written By: British Dressage
  • Published: Fri, 17 May 2019 11:10

Thirty-four teams of riders representing seven BD regions congregated at Keysoe Equestrian in Bedfordshire for the 2019 Senior Inter Regional event (10 – 12 May 2019).

After months of hard work and prep it was local squad Eastern Greatest Showman, supported by Feedmark, who took top team honours. The victorious Eastern team of Sian Sheridan (Ardie), Debra Stapleton (Fuego’s Funny Guy) and Samantha Williams (Jim Murphy) posted a cracking total score of 413.620, each riding two tests at their respective level to secure the coveted title. Filling the team podium was Wales Balerion (409.182) and Wales Faranth (407.755), with the remaining dragon inspired Welsh teams following in fifth, sixth and ninth place.

Talking about the weekend, which featured the Senior Inter Regional and Equissage Pulse Para Home International running concurrently, Eastern region RDO Katharine Perry proudly commented, “It was fabulous to have our Para and Senior riders all together at Keysoe this weekend. Although we relinquished our Para title, we didn’t go home empty handed as the Senior Inter Regional Trophy came home to the East! Our riders in the Eastern Greatest Showman Team all rode their socks off to achieve high scores across the levels.

“It truly was a whole team effort this weekend, with Para Rep Joanne Dagley Cleworth, Chairman Lotte Olsen, Rider Rep Hayley Liddiard, Team Coach Mark Ruddock, Team Chef Matt Fawcett and the many other partners, parents, friends and supporters who all came and cheered us on and partied with us! It was a proud moment to see Eastern riders on the top of the podium for the Senior Inter Regional and in third for the Para Home International. To see both our Senior and Para riders all gathered together in the sunshine at the prize giving made the weekend even more special!”

Dragon power was in evidence with the prolific results of the teams who travelled from Wales. “As I write this there are 20 plus horses in their transport heading to the four points of Wales as they return from a brilliant weekend at Keysoe,” said Wales Chairman Mike Mullis on Facebook. “As Chairman I feel so humble to have watched the 27 riders from Wales at the Para Home International and the Senior Inter Regional achieve so much, five teams in the top ten and the Para team coming fourth. This success is down to their commitment and teamwork and I thank you all for putting yourselves forward for selection and becoming such a successful group of riders. A quick thanks to the supporters who came to help the team, and a special thanks to Sue [Cottrell] our Chef d'Equipe and Vanessa [Archer] for all the work they have put in leading up to the competition and during the weekend. Well done all and I look forward to meeting many of you at the Welsh Championships in a few weeks.”

Individual accolades

Sian Sheridan from the winning Eastern Greatest Showman team, competing at Medium, remained unbeaten all weekend with her daughter India’s 14 year old UB40 x Metall gelding, Ardie. The pair broke the 70% benchmark both days to edge ahead of runners-up Helen Hopwell and Freshman from team Wales Faranth.

Sian’s teammate, Debra Stapleton took the Novice individual title with Fuego’s Funny Guy, her British bred nine year old son of Fuego. The combination, in its second year of dressage, won on Saturday with 71.94% and scored 67.21% for eighth on Sunday - a good enough performance to secure them the overall Novice title. Despite their short time in the sport, they’ve already tasted success. Fuego’s Funny Guy won the Petplan Equine Area Festivals Horse of the Month last September for earning a ticket to Hartpury on his first ever foray into the Area Festivals series, and before the year was out, he and Debra won the Nettex Veteran Rider Prelim Championship at Vale View.

The Prelim individual title belonged to Briony Cutler and Pantywaun Branwen (Tynyrheol Lloyd x Buckswood Idris) from the fifth placed team, Wales Norbetta. Briony and ‘Bron’, a 12 year old black Welsh Cob mare owned by Caroline Richards, followed their second place on Saturday with a runaway 72.92% victory Sunday for an overall percentage score of 71.16.

A rider from South Yorkshire, another with a winning Welsh pony, won the individual Elementary title for the Northern region. Nine year old gelding Gwendraeth Welsh Dancer (Glantraeth Welsh Dancer x Nebo Daniel) was piloted by Heather Woodhead from the Northern Impact team to win with an overall score of 70.34%. Heather has produced the talented chestnut herself with the help of trainer Hannah Esberger Hancock.

British Dressage thanks Simon Bates and the team at Keysoe for putting on a fantastic weekend. Congratulations to the winning teams and individuals, and to everyone who took part.

Team standings:

1. Eastern Greatest Showman – S Sheridan, D Stapleton, S Williams - 413.620
2. Wales Balerion – S Cottrell, A Jones, S Jones, S Dando-Mansell - 409.182
3. Wales Faranth – A Daye, N Fletcher, H Hopwell, E Thompson Warren - 407.755
4. Southern Bollinger – C Ashley, S Ashwell, L Westaway, T Pardew - 407.644
5. Wales Norberta – B Cutler, T Ormrod, E Stanford-Roberts, V Western - 407.449

Individual winners:

Preliminary - Briony Cutler with Pantywaun Branwen, 71.16%
Novice - Debra Stapleton with Fuego’s Funny Guy, 69.58%
Elementary - Heather Woodhead with Gwendraeth Welsh Dancer, 70.34%
Medium - Sian Sheridan with Ardie, 70.87%