After the success of the first Intermediate Masters competition at Rockingham International Horse Trials a couple of weeks ago, the competition moved up north to Belsay International in Northumberland today (Friday 3 June).
The Masters competitions provide unique opportunities for riders competing at national level, such as performing a bespoke dressage test, competing in an international sized 20m x 60m dressage arena and having the option to wear a tailcoat.
Isabel White and Quite Something took an early lead in the dressage, posting a score of 29.6. By the end of the dressage phase this had only been bettered by one combination – Adam Morgan and his own Manfriday, who moved to the top of the leader board with a score of 28.1.
It was a close battle between these top two combinations throughout the rest of the competition, matching each other’s performance in each phase. Both show jumped clear, both went clear cross country, and both even stopped the clock on the cross county at exactly the same time, with four time penalties a piece.
This result was enough to keep them ahead of the rest of the field, with Isabel finishing second and Adam’s dressage advantage keeping him at the head of proceedings and seeing him crowned the 2022 Belsay Intermediate Master. Sophie Barlow and Rock N Roll De Buissy produced the only clean sheet of the competition – no jumping penalties and no time faults – to move them up the order to finish third.
“The Intermediate Masters is a great series which gives an aim for riders like me, an amateur that works full time whilst eventing a couple of horses,” said Adam, who is based in North Yorkshire. “We came to Belsay last year for the first time and had to come back this year – events like these are the reason we go eventing. It was great to see that they had an Intermediate Masters class.
“We competed in the Intermediate Masters at Rockingham two weeks ago, where everything was going well until I dislocated my shoulder after an awkward jump cross country. I had a lesson with Caroline Moore earlier this week which gave me loads of confidence for today. It has been great putting all of that training into practice and for everything to go right on the day.
“Manfriday was perfect today in all three phases. This is my first win at intermediate level and feels like a huge achievement having produced this horse from a five-year-old.”
In addition to the honour of becoming the Belsay Intermediate Master, Adam also received a whole host of superb prizes, including a HorseQuest winner’s rug, EHOA sponsored crystal decanter and championship rosette, British Eventing winner’s sash and rosette and prize bundles from both Bates Saddles and HorseQuest.
All the competitiors had plenty to take home, with the top placed riders receiving further rosettes and prizes and everyone that took part being given a stable plaque bearing all sponsors names and a passport cover from HorseQuest.
The top six riders also earned themselves a highly sought-after ticket for the ‘Masters’ Big Prize Draw! The draw will take place at the end of all Novice and Intermediate Masters legs, with the overall winner receiving a year’s British Eventing membership for horse and rider, a year’s feed for one horse from Baileys and a £500 voucher from Jump for Joy. A runner up will also receive a £500 Jump for Joy voucher.
Our Top Six at Belsay, each receiving a ticket are:
1. Adam Morgan and Manfriday
2. Isabel White and Quite Something
3. Sophie Barlow and Rock N Roll De Buissy
4. Douglas Crawford and Shadow Lad
5. Jack Mantel and Jack Daniels
6. Jack Mantel and Ivanhoe
Congratulations to Jack Mantel who won not one but two Prize Draw tickets for finishing fifth and sixth!
There were also a number of special awards presented by BETTALIFE, where the winner will be sent 1kg of PharmaPRO Total Equine Support:
Best dressage – Adam Morgan & Man Friday
Highest climber – Alanis Milnor-Moore & Miss Maybell
Combination closest to the optimum time on the cross country – Douglas Crawford & Twilight AZ
The Masters are supported by the British Eventing partnership with funding from sponsors and partners including Baileys Horse Feeds, Bates Saddles, Bettalife, the EHOA and HorseQuest providing the prize money and prizes for the Novice Masters and Intermediate Masters Series, with further generous support from Jump 4 Joy in respect of the prize draw.