Winter Regional Championships: Vale View Equestrian

  • Written By: British Dressage
  • Published: Thu, 10 Feb 2022 16:53

The 2022 Winter Regional Championships were set in motion last week, with the first of the eight-part series taking place at Vale View Equestrian in Leicestershire (03 – 06 February 2022). Twenty regional winners were crowned, and many came a step closer to realising their NAF Five Star Winter Championships goals.

Pony rider Lauren Geraghty (16) was in dominant form, taking two Medium-level titles home to Derbyshire, securing her ticket to the NAF Five Star Winter Championships for the third consecutive year.

Partnered by her 11-year-old FEI ride, WS Jackson (pictured above), she was unbeaten on Friday. Winners of the HorseLight Medium Silver on 68.64%, the duo also enjoyed a clear win in the Spillers Medium Freestyle Silver on a score 72.00%.

Exams for Lauren resulted in a late campaign to qualify; however, a productive outing to Onley Grounds on 29 December set them on their path to Winter Regionals success.

“He’s proving to be a really consistent pony,” said Lauren’s mum Julie Geraghty afterwards. A creator of freestyles under the Equivisions banner, Julie was instrumental in helping put together Lauren’s music, compiled using tracks from the animated film How to Train Your Dragon and adapted from their Pony FEI programme.

“Lauren was delighted, particularly with her freestyle, and is really looking forward to heading to Hartpury again. ”

WS Jackson, known affectionately as Joey, is by the Welsh section B stallion Chiskin Jaguar, and out of Hanoverian mare by His Highness. He was bought by the Geraghty family two years ago last October and represented Great Britain at the 2021 Wellington and Keysoe CDIs.

The duo, who’ve earned a spot on the U21 International Pathway 2022 squad, are based with their trainer, Patsy Bartram. They also train with Paul Fielder together with having help from fellow youth rider and mentor, Maddy Frewin. “It really is a team effort.”

Darren Hicks was on top form winning two classes with his young rides. The 33-year-old who is based at Cotswold Club Equestrian in Gloucestershire started his regional campaign with a 70.31% win in the close-fought Equi-Trek Elementary Gold. Less than one percent divided the top three, with Darren occupying the top two spots. He took the win with Jen Goodman’s eight-year-old mare, J-Lo STH (pictured above).

His second success was in Sunday’s KBIS Preliminary Gold, scoring 73.90% to win with Debbie Stibbe’s British-bred five-year-old gelding, Mischievous Me.

The HorseLight Medium Gold belonged to the consistently successful combination of Sara-Jane Lanning with Nicola Seale’s Hawtins Lirica (Lemony’s Nicket x Dimaggio) who posted 73.82% to take the win. Together with a cracking 77.27% performance in the Spillers Medium Freestyle Gold, Sara-Jane and eight-year-old ‘Lyra’ (pictured in December) were another combination to chalk up a double.

Lauren Spradbury (30), from Lincolnshire, impressed to top the leaderboard in Friday’s Equi-Trek Elementary Silver with her 11-year-old gelding, Suave Cousin Kevin (Soliman de Hus x Rascalino) - pictured above.

Emma Jablonski (33) started her 2022 campaign with a win in the Superflex Intermediate I Gold partnered by her long-time ride, Higgens Van De Uilenhoek (Connaisseur x Monte Cristo) - pictured above. The pair delivered a super test for 69.31%.

“I was super-pleased with him,” said Emma. “I've been working on getting a mistake-free, consistent test, and also developing the expression.

“The canter pirouettes are still a work in progress but they're better, and he's stronger and a little more established,” she continued. “With the improved way of going, I've noticed that the [judges'] comments are changing.”

Higgens Van De Uilenhoek is a 10-year-old KWPN gelding, owned and ridden by Emma since a just-backed four-year-old. Emma is a BDCC Level 3 coach and Equine Body Worker, and she trains with Amy Woodhead.

“I’d like to try and get selected for internationals at small tour,” she said. “And my hope is to progress to Grand Prix when he's stronger and older.”

“Hannah Luesley (16), from Essex but now based in Devon where she’s the youngest team member at Elite Dressage near Crediton, claimed her first ever regional title with a decisive win.

With Elite Dressage’s six-year-old Newton Astro Nascente, aka Anton (pictured above), she claimed the Baileys Horse Feeds Novice Freestyle Silver on a strong score of 73.14%.

“He felt amazing, took the atmosphere on board and tried his heart out,” said Hannah about the Apache x Don Schufro six-year-old.

“Our music was fantastically created by Tony Hobden of Equidance,” she continued. “It's a techno, beaty compilation that complements the horse well and I love riding to it.

Hannah's colleague, Irish international rider Alex Baker, won the gold equivalent of the Baileys Horse Feeds Novice Freestyle with Bronte Watson's six-year-old gelding Lemming on 74.90% - both horses born and raised at Newton Stud.

“I'd like to thank Alex for taking me to Vale View and training me at the show,” added Hannah.

British Dressage thanks the team at Vale View Equestrian, the Winter Championships class sponsors and all involved for a successful Regional Championships. Congratulations to all qualified combinations and to everyone who took part.

Top-three results

Thursday 3 February
Class 1: Equi-Trek Elementary Silver
1. Lauren Spradbury and Suave Cousin Kevin, 70.93%
2. Laura Cooper and Woodlander Roxanne, 69.06%
3. Lynda Kinta and Martha G, 67.34%

Class 2: PDS Saddles Elementary Freestyle Silver
1. Laura Cooper and Woodlander Roxanne, 73.07%
2. Sam Gawn and Big Time Classic, 70.25%
3. Guy Reynolds and MSL Sambastar, 68.39%

Class 3: Equi-Trek Elementary Gold
1. Darren Hicks and J-Lo STH, 70.31%
2. Darren Hicks and Danny Zucco, 70.20%
3. Patsy Bartram and Green Acres Cadiz, 69.79%

Class 4: PDS Saddles Elementary Freestyle Gold
1. Patsy Bartram and Green Acres Cadiz, 72.17%
2. Verity Saul and Issey Magic, 71.98%
3. Ann Staines and Kartouche V, 69.16%

Friday 4 February
Class 5: HorseLight Medium Silver
1. Lauren Geraghty and WS Jackson, 68.64%
2. Louise Gallavan and Sandros Fire, 67.70%
3. Jo Weekes and Rosetti’s Destiny, 66.75%

Class 6: Spillers Medium Freestyle Silver
1. Lauren Geraghty and WS Jackson, 72.00%
2. Erin Orford and LJT Diamond Crusador, 70.00%
3. Verity Saul and Issey Magic, 69.44%

Class 7: HorseLight Medium Gold
1. Sara-Jane Lanning and Hawtins Lirica, 73.82%
2. Sophie Wells and Don Cara M, 71.44%
3. Marsha Webb and Ivanhoe, 70.54%

Class 8: Spillers Medium Freestyle Gold
1. Sara-Jane Lanning and Hawtins Lirica, 77.27%
2. Marsha Webb and Ivanhoe, 74.77%
3. Sophie Wells and Don Cara M, 74.72%

Class 9: Magic Prix St Georges Gold
1. Davy Harvey and Hawtins Rossana, 71.56%
2. Jennifer Martell and Integro, 69.02%
3. Emma Jablonski and Higgens Van De Uilenhoek, 68.57%

Saturday 5 February
Class 10: Equitex Advanced Medium Silver
1. Jemma Bentley and Florius, 68.77%
2. Emily Perry and Dondersteen, 67.89%
3. Claire Ballantyne and Dvorak, 67.86%

Class 11: Nupafeed Advanced Medium Silver
1. Tracy Fall and Mount Pleasant San Lorenzo, 66.88%
2. Jo Gummer and Classic Ruby, 66.27%
3. Michael Hutchinson and Sunrise Farm Othello, 65.22%

Class 12: Equitex Advanced Medium Gold
1. Anders Dahl and Tophojs Zackira, 70.30% (174)
2. Victoria Maw and Benito Dorato, 70.30% (173)
3. Judy Harvey and SP Bento, 70.26%

Class 13: Nupafeed Advanced Medium Freestyle Gold
1. Jane Green and Hacendado XVI, 70.61%
2. Victoria Maw and Belli Blue, 70.33%
3. Angharad Harries and Classic Bee Gee, 70.11%

Class 14: Superflex Intermediate I Gold
1. Emma Jablonski and Higgens Van De Uilenhoek, 69.31%
2. Jodie Pharaon and Best of Art, 68.87%
3. Nick Lawson and Iceblue Valentino, 68.62%

Sunday 6 February
Class 15: KBIS Preliminary Silver
1. Verity Corbett and Glasgow, 70.92%
2. Justina Cook and Ideal El Divino, 68.56%
3. Ella Cloake and Goulton Sunny-Street, 68.33%

Class 16: KBIS Preliminary Gold
1. Darren Hicks and Mischievous Me, 73.90%
2. Emma Jablonski and Multivision, 73.10%
3. Darren Hicks and Maverick 1, 72.18%

Class 17: Prestige Italia Novice Silver
1. Lucy Howard and Wind Chimes, 67.96%
2. Lindsay Wilcox-Reid and Sanbonani, 67.59%
3. Jordan Kavanagh and Limelight, 67.40%

Class 18: Baileys Horse Feeds Novice Freestyle Silver
1. Hannah Luesley and Newton Astro Nascente, 73.14%
2. Nalani King and Weltrhum’s Girl, 69.35%
3. Jackie Hutchison-Connors and Figilia Delle Stelle, 68.51%

Class 19: Prestige Italia Novice Gold
1. Amy Woodhead and Katniss, 74.25%
2. Emma Jablonski and Multivision, 72.16%
3. Alex Baker and Lemming, 71.97%

Class 20: Baileys Horse Feeds Novice Freestyle Gold
1. Alex Baker and Lemming, 74.90%
2. Patsy Bartram and Varonil Eucalipta, 72.03%
3. Emily Watts and Tullaher Rodney, 70.55%


Photo © Kevin Sparrow