Harry Charles crowned Leading Showjumper of the Year at Horse of the Year Show
Sunday 10 October 2021
It was a phenomenal win by Harry Charles, who represented GB at the Tokyo Olympic Games, at Horse of the Year Show this evening when he won the Grand Prix in incredible style.
Riding Stardust, an 11 year-old mare owned by Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, he was one of just two combinations that managed to achieve a double clear from the field of twenty-five combinations that had come forward. The Kelvin Bywater designed course certainly asked some questions and clear rounds had been incredibly hard to come by with disappointment coming for many, none more so when the final fence fell for the ever-popular John Whitaker and fellow Brit Holly Smith.
Showing the packed grandstands exactly how it should be done, Harry secured his victory with over six seconds in hand to add his name to the Leading Showjumper of the Year trophy which also carries his fathers name on it from when the show was run at Wembley. Harry’s win must have also felt an extremely poignant one as some of the fences his father Peter would have faced when he won Team Gold for Great Britain at London 2012 also made an appearance within the course this evening.
Talking about the class and being the final rider to come forward knowing that Ben Walker and Creevy Taylor were the early leaders Harry said “Ben was the one to beat and he hadn’t gone that fast. She’s [Stardust] naturally very fast so I stuck to my plan and didn’t push her, I just turned and trusted her. She’s the kindest horse and I think the world of her.
“I really wanted to win this one today, I came second here two years ago and my goal for the week was to come out and win the grand prix; and she came out and did it! I’m over the moon.
“I love coming here [Horse of the Year Show] and it’s a title I’ve always wanted to win so it’s amazing. It’s been my best year by a mile and I’m so lucky to have so many good horses at the top level. I couldn’t do it without my team and those behind me and I’m just really happy to have won this.”