GEORGE WHITAKER WINS YOUNG RIDER QUALIFYING COMPETITION AT ARENA UK

Wednesday 03 March 2010

GEORGE WHITAKER WINS YOUNG RIDER QUALIFYING COMPETITION AT ARENA UK

The fifth of the qualifying competitions for the World Class Development Programme Championship was held on 28th February at Arena UK.
 
The competition, which is open to riders aged 23 years or under, attracted thirty four entries at this Premier Show and with an up to height course, built by Di Boddy, that required accurate riding, produced seven clear rounds through to the jump off. 
 
The honours for the class went to a member of the Whitaker family, George Whitaker riding Tubana who jumped an impressive clear in the jump off, in a time of 30.79 seconds, with Yazmin Pinchen riding Zodiac Z in second place, clear with a time of 34.16 seconds and Nicole Pavitt in third place with Amaryllis Van de Heffink, clear with a time of 34.80 seconds.
 
Winning the qualifying class at Arena UK has moved George Whitaker into equal third place on the points table, which is still headed by Junior European Gold Medallist, Carian Scudamore with 82 points, followed by Abbie Squires on 53 points and in equal third place with George is Chris Smith who are both with 50 points.
 
As part of its sponsorship, the World Class Development Programme is funding the first place prize money of £300 at the qualifying competitions, as well as Training Vouchers, which are awarded to the first six prize-winning riders, currently eligible for British Team selection, the other three riders who received Training Vouchers were Jodie Ward (4th), Florence Bellm (5th) and Thomas Whitaker (6th).
 
Corrine Bracken, Junior and Young Rider Chef d’Equipe commented, “The winner of this class, George Whitaker (17) has won individual and team gold medals at the Pony European Championships, while Yamzin Pincher (16) has won the equivalent at the Children on Horses European Championships, showing that these two young athletes were not only able to hold their own in a class against riders who were older and more experienced, but it was also evident the continued progression they are making through their competitive equestrian pathways”.
 
Together with the further two qualifying competitions being held at Towerlands EC and The Hand during March, it will be the top twenty-two horse and rider combinations, based on points from that horse and rider combination’s best four results that will come forward to jump in the World Class Development Programme Championship and, it’s supporting competition, the World Class Development Programme Pathfinder. These will be held at The British Open Show Jumping Championships in Birmingham’s LG Arena (7-10th April 2010). 
 
The World Class Development Programme is Lottery and Exchequer funded through UK Sport, and seeks to identify and develop talented athletes who have shown the potential to reach the world stage. The Programme underpins World Class Performance and, together with the Equine Pathway, they comprise the Equestrian World Class Programme, incorporating the three Olympic sports of dressage, eventing, show jumping and the Paralympic sport of para-equestrian dressage.
The Programmes work closely with the three British Equestrian Federation Olympic Member Bodies; British Dressage, British Eventing and British Showjumping, whose own training and competition programmes work hand in hand with the programmes run within World Class.


Special rules relating to the qualifying classes can be found under ‘Competitions and Classes’ in the Show Area on the British Showjumping website.

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