Young horses excel in The Howden Way young horse classes at Tweseldown

A double clear with a score of 32.8 secured victory for Harry Dzenis and his own Tullibards Fit For Purpose in The Howden Way six-year-old class at Tweseldown.

Harry has owned the Irish mare by Jaguar Mail out of Tullibards Nightengale since a three-year-old.

“This was her first proper novice,” said Harry. “She hasn’t had a lot of runs this season so I was really surprised that she came out and won. She was very good in all three phases. The cross-country was quite a decent novice and she was very cool. She is very tough and fast and enjoys her job.”

The plan for the mare is do some more six-year-old classes and then aim for the young horse championships at Cornbury in the autumn.

“She is a really lovely horse for the future,” Harry added. “The young horse classes are different from normal classes and a good opportunity to put your young horse against other young horses and see where they are at.”

Runner-up in the six-year-old class was UCS Disclosure ridden by Edie Murray-Hayden who finished on a score of 32.8, while Toby Pigott was third riding Dolmen Dun Aenghus on a score of 34.8.

Max Gordon and Shades Of Sligo II were the winners of the seven-year-old class. They added 2.4 cross-country time penalties to their 28.4 dressage for a total score of 30.8.

The Irish gelding by Sligo Candy Boy out of Bouncing Molly has been with Max since a four-year-old.

“We bought him from Millie Dumas who did a great job starting him off, and we’ve produced him from there,” said Max who works as a barrister. “He was very good at Tweseldown and took to it really well. He seems to be stepping up this year which is lovely to see.

“Tweseldown was his first intermediate. He’s got the scope and all the ability but you are never quite sure what they’re going to do until you get them to an event. Novice to intermediate is a big step up but he had a lovely round and never had a bad jump cross-country. He is going to Chatsworth to do the 2* short and Belsay to his first 2* long, and all being well he’ll do a 3* later this year.”

Second was Wilsford Lyra ridden by Hannah Freeman who finished on a score of 36.6, and in third was Kantango and Kitty King who also finished on 36.6.

The series, supported by The Howden Way, is an ideal opportunity for riders to expose their up-and-coming eventers to the atmosphere of bigger venues, while competing against other horses of the same age. The classes offer recognition for the highest performing horses in these classes.

The Young Horse classes take place throughout the spring and summer in some of BE’s most stunning venues with the 6-year-old classes running at novice level, and the 7-year-old classes running at intermediate level.

The top three in each class receive an additional £250, £150, £100 respectively on top of the prize money already generated and awarded by the prize money calculator.

For dates of the young horse classes this year, please click here

Alongside these classes, the performance of young horses competing with British Eventing is acknowledged within The Howden Way Young Horse Leagues which can be found here. There are four leagues which cover the ages of 5 years, 6 years, 7 years and then the ages of 8 & 9 combined. The leagues display the average of a horse’s three best finishing scores via a Power Based Average score which highlights the ability to repeatedly finish on a low score.

The 2024 Young Horse Championships take place at Cornbury House Horse Trials in Oxfordshire between 12-15 September. The classes will also benefit those aiming their young horses at the FEI World Breeding Championships at Le Lion d’Angers, which hosts a CCI2*-L World Championship for six-year-olds and a CCI3*-L World Championship for seven-year-olds.

For full results, click here

Images courtesy of Spidge Event Photography

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