Emily King has won the British Horse Feeds Under 25 CCl3* National Championship at Bramham, leading the field from start to finish.
After many years watching her mum, Mary, compete at Bramham International Horse Trials it was time for Emily to shine. The 22-year-old was the only rider in the competition to finish on her dressage score, riding Jane Del Missier’s Dargun.
Emily made light work of Di Boddy’s technical cross-country track to finish clear within the time allowed. However, she couldn’t afford a single rail in the final phase, as France’s Thibault Fournier was breathing down her neck in second place.
There was a heart-stopping moment when Dargun rattled the first fence, but the 10-year-old didn’t touch another pole, and they finished on their dressage score of 25.5pen.
“He felt amazing,” said Emily. “When I got on him in the warm-up he was bucking and squealing — it helps him with his spring and attention if he’s a bit jolly.
“He jumped well in the warm-up and carried that through into the ring. The crowd helps him rather than distracting him and the fences were quite spooky here, which helps too. He jumped consistently and was very focused, so I couldn’t be happier with him.”
Thibault stayed in second place, while Emily’s boyfriend Sam Ecroyd was third with Vicki Irlam’s Master Douglas.
The U25 event runs alongside the main Equi-Trek CCI3*, which was won by Germany’s Julia Krajewski and Chipmunk FRH. The pair finished on an impressive score of 19.4pen, which set a record for the lowest score at a three-star event.
Andrew Nicholson was nearly 10 points behind them in second place with Spring Swallows (28pen), while Australia’s Bill Levett was third on Lassban Diamond Lift (28.2pen).
Fourth spot went to Kitty King who also took the ‘best Brit’ accolade with Vendredi Biats, after they added nothing to their dressage of 29.4pen.
William Fox-Pit dropped from third place after the cross-country to 11th, when Oratorio II had two down in the showjumping.