Talent shines through at MyQuest Championships

  • Written By: British Dressage
  • Published: Tue, 06 Nov 2018 11:53

Bigger and better than ever, the Kent & Masters My Quest Championships kick started the bumper grass roots weekend at Bury Farm with a bang last weekend (Friday 26 October). With classes full to the brim, all competitors had to be in their best form to have a shot at the prestigious titles and amazing prizes.

Taking home the first title in the Open classes was Staffordshire based rider Francesca Smith (26) who stormed to victory in the Intro Championships with her own Future Enigma. Francesca (pictured) and the elegant five-year-old Irish Sports Horse (Future Gravitas x Hand In Glove XX) achieved 70.51% for their test to put them on the top step of the podium ahead of Becky Howells with Brooms Ottoman and Samantha Ireson with Kylemore Abbey Lara. Bred by Future Sport Horses, ‘Alfie’ has overcome adversity to win at the Championships for owner Francesca who nearly lost him as a two-year-old through a tendon sheath infection. Three years later, their strong partnership and Francesca’s dedication to her lovely horse was evident in their test and the future certainly looks bright for the talented duo.

A super 68.85% was the score for Suzanna Smith and In The Limelight 1 who snatched the Open Prelim Championship win by two marks. In The Limelight 1, a home-bred nine-year-old by T Movistar, and Suzanne saved their best performance for the Championships, improving on their South West Quest Regional Final mark by no less than two percent! Suzanne, an RSPCA inspector and mother to 12-year-old twin boys, was thrilled to be awarded a wild card to the Championships and without doubt capitalized on the opportunity.

In the Open Novice Championships, Amanda Hansen and False Alibi impressed the judges panel consisting of Jane Ellis, Joyce Head and Sue Staines to earn 68.97% and the winner’s spoils. In only their first season of British Dressage competition together, Amanda and schoolmaster ‘Al’ have enjoyed a brilliant year of competition culminating in a win at the MyQuest Championships and an appearance at the Nettex Veteran Associated Championships.

In the under 21 categories, the stars of the future shone in three highly competitive classes. Thirteen-year-old Tegan Crook turned heads in the Intro C Championships with both her great riding and eye-catching choice of partner, her own 17.2hh palomino Koko, a horse she’s backed and produced from day one. The judges awarded their test a fantastic 69.49% which left the duo half a mark ahead of deserved runner-up Fi Grabham with her own charming Welsh pony Waxwing Pocket Money.

Another 13-year-old to taste success was Bristol-based teen Amelia Hendy, who strolled to victory in the Prelim U21 Championship earning the highest score of the show en route with her own Coedfryn Secret Surprise. Linda Waller, Jane Tolley and Martyne Galland awarded Amelia with 71.45%, enough to earn her the Gill Drew trophy as well as the coveted Championship title and prizes. A keen member of the Beaufort Hunt Pony Club and Beaufort Belles Quest team, Amelia has retrained her part-bred Hanoverian ex-eventer ‘Magic’ for dressage with the help of trainer Beth Hobbs. The talented duo contributed two 70% scores to the Beaufort Belles over the weekend in the Team Quest Championships to complete their Quest campaign in style.

At their first Quest Championships, Evie Hardwick and six-year-old Roxlan Jasper were successful in the Novice U21 class; they earned 70.51% to top the field as the sole plus-70% score. Hailing from North Yorkshire, 21-year-old Evie purchased her winning horse 18 months ago and has been training the attractive dun with the help of Kate Appleyard.

Speaking on her Facebook page Evie said, “Wow! What a long couple of days! A five-hour journey to Bury Farm for the My Quest Novice Championships, a very long day waiting to do my test at 4:51 this evening, many a cup of tea and a very fidgety fed up pony wanting his field! It was well worth the wait, after a tense warm up which put my nerves up a notch, Jasper went and performed like the absolute star he is in the N30 to WIN with 70.51%. This boy really shines, proud of his attitude is an understatement, I’ve never known a horse like him.”

Congratulations to all who took part in the Kent & Masters My Quest Championships. Thanks go to generous sponsors Kent & Masters and to host venue Bury Farm.


MQ Open Intro
Francesca Smith with Future Enigma, 70.51%

MQ Open Prelim 
Suzanne Smith with In The Limelight 1, 68.85%

MQ Open Novice
Amanda Hansen with False Alibi, 68.97%

MQ Intro U21
Tegan Crook with Koko, 69.49%

MQ Prelim U21
Amelia Hendy with Coedfryn Secret Surprise, 71.54%

MQ Novice U21
Evie Hardwick with Roxlan Jasper, 70.51%