Lottie Fry and Dark Legend Make Dressage History

YOUNG dressage rider Lottie Fry made history when taking the Grand Prix Freestyle to Music at this year’s U25s European Championships in the Netherlands.

Riding her superstar dancing partner Dark Legend that she co-owns with trainer Anne Van Olst, Lottie’s 10-year-old performed an energetic freestyle to secure the gold medal.

The superbly talented TopSpec sponsored rider scored 82.14%, to leave the pair with three per cent in front of their nearest rival Germany’s Jill-Marielle Becks with Damon’s Satellite.

The two riders were locked in battle at this event, each winning a test in the run up to the championship but Charlotte and Dark Legend capitalized on their late draw to blow the competition away.

Said Lottie: “Dark Legend looks and feels amazing, the TopSpec feed has made a big difference to him, and most importantly he absolutely loves it!”

Dark Legend’s feed regime includes TopSpec Comprehensive Feed Balancer, TopChop Sport and TopSpec Performance Cubes.

Lottie and Dark Legend’s test saw them earn no less than 17 nines from the judges panel with all five ranking her unanimously in first place.

A maximum number of three British riders came forward to contest the Grand Prix Freestyle to Music, with Ryan Todd, also sponsored by TopSpec and Rebecca Edwards enjoying an exciting final test.

Ryan Todd and his mother Julie’s Charlex Eskebjerg also produced a brilliant test to score 70.79% in their second U25s Championship together. Ryan and Charlie placed 14th to finish their time in the under 25s category in style.

 

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PJ Casey Wins Supreme Hunter Championship at Dublin for the First Time

Supported by TopSpec, the prestigious Hunter Championships at the Royal Dublin Horse Show brought together the very best light, middle and heavyweight hunters to vie for the major honours over the show.

Winning the Supreme Championship was the culmination of a day of outstanding results for showman, PJ Casey.

PJ captured the Middleweight Hunter five-year -ld class on Kingston Pique and Heavyweight four-year-old class riding Greenhall Will i Am before going on to ride Somerville the lovely four-year-old lightweight, bay gelding to take the overall honours. Somerville gave the judges a great ride, defying his years and looked like he could gallop all day.

The Reserve Champion Ridden Hunter went to First Rate, ridden by Louise Lyons and owned by Paulette Cooper. Proving his versatility First Rate won the Working Hunter Championship as well.

Held in the main arena, the Hunter classes were first introduced in 1868 and have a very long history and tradition with the event, demonstrating the best examples of the famed Irish Hunter.

Said Katy Mickle of TopSpec: “We were delighted to once again sponsor the hunter classes at Dublin Horse Show for a fifth year running.

“The show at Dublin is very special and the atmosphere was fantastic.

“It is great that so many horses and ponies enjoying outstanding results at Dublin are fed on TopSpec including both the Supreme and Reserve Champion Ridden Hunter.”

Before taking the Supreme honours, Somerville took first place in the four-year-old Lightweight Hunter going on to win the four-year-old championship and received much praise from PJ.

“Taking the Supreme Hunter Championship at Dublin with Somerville was an incredible moment.  For a four-year-old he just keeps getting better and better, he’s going to have a very successful career,” he said.

First Rate had originally headed the five to eight-year-old Lightweight Hunter section on his way to taking the Reserve Championship and the liver chestnut gelding has also been on great form on UK soil this season with Louise, also well known in the world of eventing.

Louise also took the Middleweight Hunter Championship on Dartans Blockbuster to round off a successful show.

 

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Benbreac of Croila and Matt Cooper Take Supreme Pony Championship

Melanie Stanford’s Benbreac of Croila, ridden by Matt Cooper took home the De La Hey Family Supreme Pony Championships at the Royal International Horse Show after a superb performance.

The difficult task of sorting the champions into a final line-up was down to Badminton Horse Trials winner Nicky Coe, Andrew Charley owner of Townfields Saddlery and former show producer Jane Crofts.

There was a tie of scores between the BSPS Heritage Mountain & Moorland Champion and the Leeman Family BSPS Supreme Show Pony Champion, both finishing on 25 points which resulted in a ride off between the two.

They both worked hard for the judges’ attention as they competed together at the same time, but it was the stunning Highland Pony that took the top award with reserve going to Isabella Whittle and Moluccas Bengal Beauty.

The 11-year-old Benbreac of Croila, looked in fantastic condition with his TopSpec feed regime of TopSpec Comprehensive Feed Balancer, TopChop Lite and TopSpec Joint Support helping to keep him in peak fitness.  The attractive grey gives Matt an athletic ride and his gallop wowed all the judges and turned spectator’s heads.

With the weather being so extreme at Hickstead, Melanie added TopSpec Electrolytes to his diet to help replace his body salts due to the heavy sweating early on in the week.

Having bought him unhandled straight from the hillside in Scotland he really is a once in a lifetime pony and I enjoy every moment with him,” said Melanie.

A working stallion, Breac is by Ulleam of Croila out of the mare Shelagh of Croila and has an incredible showing career.

Some of his fantastic achievements include the Supreme Heritage BSPS Summer Championships, Supreme BSPS Heritage Show, HOYS 2014 to 2017, Olympia Best of Breed 2015, Best of Breed & Reserve Champion overall 2016.

He has also taken many in-hand championships including, Royal Highland, Royal Norfolk, Royal Cornwall, Great Yorkshire, Cheshire County, Stoneleigh, South of England, East of England, Supreme Southern Highland Pony Show and the Scottish Horse Show.   At Royal Windsor two years running, 2013 and 2014, Breac took the Mountain & Moorland Supreme In Hand title.

“He’s had an incredible in-hand career and now he’s having an incredible ridden career too. He’s a working stallion and his offspring are now starting to show with great results. He’s like a Thoroughbred in a Highland’s body” said Gemma, Melanie’s daughter.

 

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TopSpec Sponsor Showjumping Ireland Autumn Grand Prix Series

As the summer season draws to a close, Showjumping Ireland is delighted to welcome TopSpec as new sponsors to the Autumn Grand Prix Series. The Top Spec Autumn Grand Prix, which commences on the September 15 at The Meadows Equestrian, will no doubt attract strong competition.

In total, the series will consist of 17 legs and a final which will take place in Cavan Equestrian on December 2.

Last year’s competition was spectacular with John Floody and Jonathan Smyth creating huge excitement battling it out right to the wire leaving the final round as the decider.

Floody found victory on Bronson De Reve with Smyth taking second and third spots overall with Ping Ball and Charlton Clio.

As previously, the TopSpec Autumn Grand Prix Series will comprise of two heights, a 1.35m class and a 1.40m class. Each height class is worth different points and the leaderboards will note the winner at the end of the series.

Speaking about the sponsorship, The Chairperson of the association, Ray Buchanan commented: “I am delighted to have TopSpec coming on board this season for the Autumn Grand Prix Series. I would like to thank Katy and the team for their support and look forward to a great series. I would also like to wish all our competitors the very best of luck. We have some great venues onboard again this year and I am certain it will generate as much if not more excitement as previous years.”

Because excellent nutrition is of prime importance to TopSpec they guarantee to ‘Create without Compromise.’ Competitors can rest assured that none of their products will be compromised, ever.

Katy Mickle, Sales & Marketing Director of TopSpec expressed her enthusiasm about the series: “TopSpec is delighted to sponsor the Showjumping Ireland Autumn Grand Prix Series for 2018. The series is a great way to keep competitors active in the Autumn months and extends the season right up until December.”

 

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Castle Diceman Takes the Honours

Castle Diceman, the stunning seven-year-old grey, connemara stallion recently added another string to his bow by qualifying for HOYS at the Great Yorkshire Show.

Owned by Alison Grainger for the past four years, Castle Diceman was up against 42 entries at the prestigious Yorkshire event and went forward to the Supreme Mountain&Moorland final.

Said Alison: “It was a very special day, certainly one to tick off my bucket list winning at the Great Yorkshire Show and qualifying for HOYS. It is our proudest achievement.

“When you are an amateur working on your own every day as many of us do, it makes it even more special knowing you can achieve your dreams with hard work, determination and of course a special pony.”

Known as “Dicey” in the stables, Alison bought the fabulous stallion as a three-year-old from breeder Henry O’Toole in Clifden, Country Galway. He is by Glencarrig Knight out of Village Linnet, bred in Ireland.

Dicey has been shown in-hand, under saddle in novice ridden and this year started in open classes. As a three-year-old he was Junior Champion at the famous Connemara Pony Festival in Clifden, Country Galway and as a five-year-old Dicey won his in-hand class and was Reserve Champion at The Royal Highland Show.

He gained two silver medals and two golds in-hand including at the NPS Scotland Blair finals in 2016 and also took the novice ridden final at Blair in 2017. Since progressing to open this year, he has won two silver medals, two championships, collected two reserve supreme M&M titles and qualified for HOYS at his second attempt.

Dicey’s TopSpec feed regime includes TopSpec CoolCondition Cubes which he has been fed on ever since he started his in-hand classes as a three-year-old.

Said Alison: “I had tried various other conditioning feeds but found one that balanced condition without adding too much fizziness in TopSpec CoolCondition Cubes.

“At 143cm I was showing him in-hand and I’m only 5ft 3 tall so really appreciated the factor of the feed not making him fizzy.”

Since feeding Dicey the TopSpec CoolCondition Cubes he has been able to keep condition on all year round.

 

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Lucy and King Creole Head the TopSpec Challenge for The Corinthian Cup

Lucy Wheeler and King Creole VD N Ranch kept a clean sheet from pillar to post to win the TopSpec Challenge for The Corinthian Cup, a National Restricted Novice Championship at the Magic Millions Festival of British Eventing.

This was a first ever visit to The Festival for Lucy, 27, who had never been to spectate, let alone compete.

“It’s been a new experience for both of us, but a real buzz. I thought he’d be spooky in the atmosphere, so he has surprised me,” said Lucy, who is head girl at a point-to-point and hunt yard in East Sussex.

“My horses have to fit in around work, but the summer is generally quieter and my boss, Stuart Robinson, has been very generous, letting me have two weeks off to come here and go on to Hartpury next week for the CCI*.”

The pair produced a consistent dressage test to lie fourth on 27.5, jumped up to second with a clear round in the showjumping and took the win when the two phase leaders, Jethro Thompson and Seapatrick Hint Of Cruise, clocked up a hatful of time penalties.

The eight-year-old King Creole, whose stable name is ‘Bubba’, is owned by Graham Jack, who produced him initially.

Lucy took over the ride in 2016. “He’s quite arrogant and opinionated, but he loves the job,” said Lucy.

Runner-up Morgan Kent only started eventing in April this year. She is more regularly seen on the showjumping circuit and had hot-footed it back from Slovakia, where she finished fourth in a grand prix last week, to compete here on her own eight-year-old mare, Felda.

“I bought her as a foal from an auction in Holland. I’d always thought she’d make a good event horse as she really moves, and this year I thought it was about time I gave it a go,” explained Morgan.

Unsurprisingly, the pair were foot-perfect over the coloured poles and a speedy clear across country saw them complete on their dressage score of 29.5. Third-placed Harriet Ford was delighted to be on the podium with her “horse of a lifetime” According To Archie.

“He injured a tendon two years ago while competing at the South of England. I’d always said that anything he did afterwards would be a bonus,” said Harriet, who led the dressage on a score of 25.5, but lost the top spot when she lowered a show jump.

There were 30 clears from 41 cross-country starters; the most influential fence being the House of Fraser Water (11ab) below the Avening Banks.

Course Designer Captain Mark Phillips, commented: “Since the TopSpec Challenge for The Corinthian Cup was introduced to The Festival in 2015 we have seen the best amateur riders take on the unique challenge of riding at Gatcombe Park. This year’s class was a fantastic competition and the winner was thoroughly deserving.”

 

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‘Heniarth Yes Sir’ Wins the TopSpec Pretty Polly Ridden Championship 2018

Judged by Hannah Long and Terry Pattinson, Heniarth Yes Sir owned by Anouska Potter took the TopSpec Pretty Polly Ridden Championship at the North of England Summer Pony Show at Arena UK, Grantham.

The competition drew in 14 finalists of all types and sizes who set a high standard for the class.

Six-year-old, Heniarth Yes Sir a beautiful home produced grey, stood out and proudly took home the championship title. Runner up was awarded to five-year-old Sophie Simonds and the 10-year-old Dartmoor Pumphill Brosnan.

Heniarth Yes Sir was ridden by Anouska’s five-year-old son Aston Potter-Firth and the championship win saw them take home the £1,000 prize to their base in Pickering.

Judges Hannah Long and Terry Pattinson were in agreement the six-year-old grey Welsh Section A and Aston had the winning edge.

Said Anouska: “Heniarth Yes Sir is always so laid back, he is a pleasure to own and work with and is so willing to turn his talented hoof to anything.”

Known as Eddie in the stable, the grey Welsh Section A pony is a successful contender from the Heniarth stud having placed fourth at HOYS last year in the lead rein final.

Heniarth Yes Sir and Aston have recently won and qualified for the Horse of the Year Show for the second year running at the Scottish Horse Show. The star pony also contests first ridden and open classes with Aston’s 12-year-old sister, Anya.

Anouska’s home produced supreme Heniarth Yes Sir is out of Sunwillow Yasmin and sired by Heniarth Mr Milligan. The TopSpec Supreme Pretty Polly Ridden Championship is for home-produced ponies and showing is very much a family affair for the winning team.

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TopSpec Challenge for The Corinthian Cup

Now in its fourth year the National Restricted Novice Championship at The Magic Millions Festival of British Eventing will once again be supported by TopSpec.

The North Yorkshire-based company will have a trade stand at the event providing expert nutritional advice, offers and competitions.

In 2017 the title went to Quorn stud groom, Lorna Collins as the runaway winner of The TopSpec Challenge for The Corinthian Cup at Gatcombe Park.

Riding the six-year-old Blackrock Ricardo, she stormed to victory around the undulating park to land a resounding win.

Said Lorna: “Winning the The TopSpec Challenge for The Corinthian Cup was a fantastic day.  Competing at championship level at venues such as Gatcombe Park really helps to develop horses and put them in situations where there is a brilliant atmosphere.

“Competing at a major championship like The Festival of British Eventing really brings them on and helps them to deal with the bigger occasion.

“To ride alongside the best in the world and feel included – and be part of – the main competition was a fantastic experience.”

Added Lorna: “I was so pleased with the result he jumped out of his skin in the show jumping and was in fantastic form I couldn’t have asked for more.”

Said Katy Mickle of TopSpec: “The TopSpec Challenge for The Corinthian Cup is a fantastic competition and we are very proud to be supporting again in 2018.

“Gatcombe Park provides a stunning location for the championship and we are looking forward to another brilliant competition this year.”

The TopSpec Challenge for the Corinthian Cup is aimed at true amateur riders and will be one of the championship classes taking place August 3 to 5.

 

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TopSpec Extend Their Sponsorship for Another Five Years

As the countdown to Horse of the Years Show’s 70th Anniversary kicks in, it is with great pride that Grandstand Media Ltd welcomes TopSpec as the dedicated sponsor of the TopSpec Arena at HOYS for a further five years. The TopSpec Arena sees hundreds of competitors contest the showing championships throughout the five days, which they have dutifully qualified for, and the crowds in the arena seem to increase year on year. In 2017 we saw the move of the TopSpec Arena to its own dedicated Hall which allowed more space for spectators and creating an atmosphere unto itself.

Katy Mickle of TopSpec said: “We have been delighted to sponsor the TopSpec Arena at HOYS over the last two years and with 2018 being our third year we are very much committed to the show and the support we offer.  The new agreement for a further five years until 2023 demonstrates our strength of feeling for HOYS on both a business and personal level.  The show gets better and better, we have been very pleased with how well the TopSpec brand is promoted at, and in the run up to the event.  This is backed up by how many competitors and visitors come to see the nutritional team on the stand throughout HOYS, to ask questions and find out more about the range we offer and the feeding regimes and plans we would suggest for their horses and ponies.  Without doubt HOYS is the end of season party in the equestrian world and long may it continue.”

Emma Wardell, Event Director for Horse of the Year Show, commented: “We are hugely proud of our long term relationship with TopSpec, which commenced in 2005, and this announcement confirming their continued support of the Showing Arena at HOYS until 2023.  Both Horse of the Year Show and TopSpec are committed to innovation and excellence in the equestrian industry, making this a natural partnership for both companies.  It goes without saying that we look forward to an exciting future with the team at TopSpec and to welcoming many more visitors and competitors to ‘The TopSpec Arena’ at HOYS.”

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Team Walker Season Off to a Flying Start

Cheshire-based showman Robert Walker is well known for finding and producing future stars and the 2018 season looks set to be as busy as ever.

The TopSpec-sponsored rider has five, four-year-old and five, five-year-old hunters to show as well as his well established stars, the Heavyweight, Patrick’s Choice and last year’s HOYS Hunter Champion, Viewpoint.

The season has already got off to a flying start with the Jill Day-owned chestnut, Patrick’s Choice taking the Hunter Championship at Sport Horse North West, while the five-year-old and former Dublin In Hand Champion, Emperor’s Touch won the Lightweight class at his first show.

Paul Mortimer’s Novice Cob, Freddie Kruger was also triumphant in his section to add to the team’s winning ways.

At the Northern Spring Show, Bold Heath, Robert once again took the Hunter Championship, this time on the Lightweight, Pride of Place, for the third year running.

Monbeg Sods Law, captured the Middleweight division before taking the Reserve Champion place.

Said Robert: “Our major aim for the spring is Royal Windsor so the last few weeks we have focused on getting the horses out to shows to see how they settle and where they are at with their training and confidence.

“I am very fortunate to have a great team of youngsters this season, especially with the hunters and across all weight divisions as well as Small Hunter classes.

“Monbeg Sods Law has a lot of presence and fingers crossed he continues to improve throughout the season as there is no doubt he is topclass.

“I also have a Novice Heavyweight Cob, George Stubbs for Camilla Neame and a Large Riding Horse, Ballyshan Contender so there are plenty of rides to keep everyone busy and on their toes.”

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