Hickstead Derby Show
The best place to start with remembering the Hickstead Derby Show 2022 is definitely at the end: when you know how big and important a plan is, how well researched, how well practiced; every little bit of the plan covered, and how incredibly close that plan came to fruition in 2019 and how much the hope and dreams of not only Shane, but Chloe and the huge team behind him - not only the team in 2022, but also all the collective team that have worked at Breen Equestrian in the last 17 years - watching the seventy something minutes of the Hickstead Derby between Can ya Makan's clear round and Dermot Lennon having four faults at the rails at the bottom of the bank was a very, very long time. Really I'd have been absolutely delighted for any of the first four to win, but finally this really was Shane's year - cementing a tremendous win with second on Golden Hawk. It was just a wonderfully emotional moment for so many reasons, and I'm sure different ones for different people. It was very well celebrated long into the night, just as it should have been.
Saturday was an equally wonderful day of competition. Charlene Bastone set out making it look deceptively all to easy on Halina, until Carlos sped past all his Hickstead demons into the lead, Charlene pipped herself into third, but Harriet and Silver Lift just did their thing so beautifully to emphasize their place at the top of Speed Derby history.
The whole week was just lovely. So good to see the trade stand aisles full of people, perfect weather and great jumping. On Wednesday I only had Arietta to jump, and she jumped an OK round in Ring 4 in the 1.25. We're turning yet another page in our partnership as her ride improves and the jumps get bigger and on a very hot afternoon she felt a little bit flat.
We had a very long day on Thursday with Khalissy jumping in the 1.20 first thing in Ring 4, and Arietta in the last class in the same ring. They each had a fence in the jump-off, but jumped well.
On Wednesday Arietta kicked off with a great round in the 1.30 in Ring 2. It was big and square enough for only the second 1.30 she's jumped since Spain, but she jumped and traveled so well on the lovely grass, so I was very sad to have the last fence in the first half when having such a good time. Khalissy also jumped very well in the Foxhunter, just backing off the brush jump in the jump-off and having the back rail, but she is turning into such a great little competitor, and such a professional in the ring.
Back home we have said a very sad goodbye to April Kitchener, who has now gone to be Yard Manager to Gemma Tattersall. I so enjoyed working with April, she was fantastic with the horses, and such a great support to me and we will all miss her. I was very lucky that Gemma Jelinska came to help me at Hickstead, who also knows me very well. I am very pleased to welcome Ellie Collins on to the team. Ellie has worked in show jumping locally for some time, and is used to grooming both at home and at national and international shows. With Ellie's first full week here completed she has made a great start. We have our first show together at Keysoe next week and I am thoroughly looking forward to it.
As always many thanks to my sponsors and supporters:
Saracen Horse Feeds