Junior and Young Rider Teams Round Out a Weekend of Podium Finishes for Great Britain at the Youth Nations Cup of Zuidwolde

Monday 03 June 2024

Junior and Young Rider Teams Round Out a Weekend of Podium Finishes for Great Britain at the Youth Nations Cup of Zuidwolde

Great Britain jump into second place on the podium in the Junior Nations Cup of Zuidwolde 

Great Britain’s Junior team claimed second in the Junior Nations Cup of Zuidwolde at the Youth Meeting in De Wolden, The Netherlands, only one fence denying them victory.

A strong contingent of 14 teams came forward over a 12-fence 1.40m track designed by Henk Linders with two teams emerging at the top of the leaderboard at the halfway stage – host country The Netherlands alongside Belgium.  Britain was one of a bunch of four tied in third place on four faults – it was tight at the top and all to play for.

It didn’t go as planned for pathfinder Maisy Williams, who was celebrating her 18th birthday, as the Kashmir Van Schuttershof 15-year-old Dalton O’Hoyo returned a most uncharacteristic round, but next out Noora von Bulow and the consistent 11-year-old Interstar B (I’m Special De Muze x Ohorn VDL) proved foot-perfect with a clear.  Charlie Atkinson made just one mistake to come home on four faults with the Future Trend 11-year-old mare Ballingowan Leia while anchor Olivia Sponer dismissed any pressure to supply a much-needed clear on the 13-year-old Equine America Bingo Du Chateau (Quaprice Bois Margot x Royal Feu).  It kept Britain in the frame and the pressure was on.

Maisy coped well to complete her round second time out with an off-form Dalton D’Hoyo and it was down to her final three teammates.  Noora and Interstar B returned four faults this time, but Charlie improved on his first round four to provide a clear round with Ballingowan Leia. 

A podium place rested on Olivia’s shoulders – and she pulled it out of the bag with a magnificent double clear on Bingo Du Chateau, one of six double clears in the competition. France moved up to the top position with a zero score in round two to total four faults over the two rounds to guarantee victory. 

On four faults in each round, Britain was on a total of eight faults.  But so was The Netherlands, who added eight faults to their round one score of zero, and Germany, who had scraped into the cut of the eight top teams on eight faults but dug deep to jump clear in round two.  The result was decided on time, Britain stepping up to second place on the podium with The Netherlands in third and Germany fourth.

“After Maisy’s rounds, the pressure was on the others, but they delivered.  It was Charlie’s first Nations Cup and Olivia hasn’t been on a team since Covid, so I was very pleased with them,” said Youth Team Manager Clare Whitaker.

Junior Nations Cup – Zuidwolde, The Netherlands – 31 May 2024    

1st France 4/0

2nd Great Britain 4/4

Maisy Williams & Dalton D’Hoyo – EL/20
Noora von Bulow & Interstar B – 0/4
Charlie Atkinson & Ballingowan Leia – 4/0
Oliva Sponer & Equine America Bingo Du Chateau – 0/0

3rd The Netherlands 0/8 

Great Britain takes third place in a cliff-hanger result in the Young Riders Nations Cup of Zuidwolde

It went to the wire in the Young Riders Nations Cup of Zuidwolde in The Netherlands, with the win hanging on the final British rider, but a costly pole dropped Great Britain to third place.

Britain led the way on a four-fault total at the halfway stage as one of nine teams, just 0.04 seconds separating the team from Germany, also on four faults. 

Rachel Proudley got the ball rolling for Britain over the 12-fence 1.45m course with a good clear round on the Corydon Van T&L nine-year-old Petitfour VD Wareslage, a new ride of two months at their fourth show. Jake Myers with the Chaman x No Limit 10-year-old J Superstar and Lauren Caroline aboard the 10-year-old Utrillo Z daughter Elmira Mail both returned on four faults each.  

Ava Vernon kept Britain ahead in the anchor position, supplying a vital clear round on the 12-year-old Vivaldi Du Seigneur mare Volnay De Choc Z to sneak ahead of Germany by the tiniest fraction on time. 

But Britain’s lead was vulnerable with Germany hot on their heels and Sweden, Italy and The Netherlands just one fence behind.  And, as the second round progressed, it was even tighter at the top.

The oxer following the double claimed Rachel and Petitfours while four faults at the oxer on a long distance after the early combination caught out Jake on ride of six months J Superstar. Lauren was determined to jump clear and left every pole intact, but the penultimate open water accounted for Elmira Mail’s four faults.  It all rested on Ava’s shoulders.  The team were on tenterhooks as she entered the arena. 

The host country The Netherlands was in the lead on 14 faults with Britain currently on a total of 12. A clear round would hand Great Britain victory.  Four faults put the team on equal footing with Germany and Sweden and the result would be dependent on time.

It all started well with an eager Volnay pulling Ava into each fence and showing a clean pair of heels over each obstacle.  But hopes died over the double as the top pole on the vertical coming out toppled to the floor, eliciting an audible groan from her teammates.

The Netherlands held on to the win and the other podium places were judged on time, Germany taking second place with Britain called in third.

“All of our riders jumped good but picked up unfortunate faults in the second round.  It was still a very good result as they were either new horses or riders stepping up to this level,” said Youth Team Manager Clare Whitaker.

Young Riders Nations Cup – Zuidwolde, The Netherlands – 31 May 2024

1st The Netherlands – 8/6 = 14

2nd Germany – 4/12 = 16

3rd Great Britain = 4/12 = 16

Rachel Proudley & Petitfour VD Wareslage – 0/4
Jake Myers & J Superstar – 4/4
Lauren Caroline & Elmira Mail – 4/4
Ava Vernon & Volnay De Choc Z – 0/4

4th Sweden – 8/8 = 16

 

Image: Jeroen Spoolder

 
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