THE 2011 Bramham Horse Trials finished with two new champions.
Germany’s Kai Rueder took top honours in the showcase CCI*** section, the first ever winner at the event for Germany.
Helen Dunning was the U25s CCI*** winner.
The U25 section got under way on Sunday after a close fought cross country day, with little room for error. Third-placed Ben Hobday lowered a rail with Uptons Who which put them out of the running to the benefit of Paul Sims who jumped clear with Power of Dreams.
Second placed Dunning was clear but added two time faults but it still didn’t give our overnight leader a fence in hand. Camilla Speirs and Portersize Just a Jiff cantered into the arena brimming with confidence but the pocket rocket of a horse clipped one pole – heartbreak for the young Irish rider but it meant victory for Dunning.
Helen has been on the British Pony and Junior squads as an individual rider and is from Whitchurch in Shropshire. Commenting on her performance with Ewart Woolley’s Keep Your Options Open, Helen said, “He was fabulous from start to finish this week! I’ve ridden at this level before but this is the biggest course I’ve ridden. It was technical throughout with big hills – you and the horse certainly needed to be fit!”
The main Welcome to Yorkshire CCI*** was also a nail biting affair with less than a fence separating the top five so clear rounds were going to be vital to stay in the running. After Saturday’s exertions, clear rounds were flowing and the British riders chasing Kai Reuder all were faultless to pile the pressure on. Saaten Unions Charley Weld never looked like touching a fence and was clear all the way to hand Germany their first win.
“I’ve had placings at 4* level but to win this is very special, said Kai.
“ No German riders have been to Bramham for ten years, our trainer, Chris Bartle, wouldn’t let us come until we were good enough. “My horse felt very relaxed in the showjumping. Chris had been helping me and I was quite confident before I went in that he would jump well.”
Second place went to Cheshire’s Polly Stockton and a popular runner up she was too.
Riding Anne Henson’s Regulus, she’s quickly returned to form after giving having her first child and proved today that she’s as hungry as ever for success. She commented; “My confidence in him (Regulus) wasn’t high going into the ring as he had three down at Chatsworth. Plus, he’s been off for a while after a colic operation in 2009 so to perform like this is fantastic. He’s a good old servant. We’ll consider taking him to Burghley now after this performance.”
Local hero Oliver Townend was third with his exciting young prospect, Neo du Breuil which he’ll now consider aiming at Burghley or Pau CCI**** following his great performance here.
Bramham has been a huge success this year with record breaking crowds, amazing weather (well, slightly chilly yesterday) and brilliant competition