A fairytale day was topped in even more glitter for one show team, as their beloved show pony gelding rose to the occasion to win the British Show Pony Society HOYS children’s riding pony of the year championship at the 2022 Horse of the Year Show (HOYS).
Lola Carabine, 10, had won the 128cm show pony final riding Jenny and her daughter Victoria Harker’s consistent gelding Ardenhall Blenheim (Joules). The 13-year-old has been a superb pony for the family, who bought him eight years ago from the Jinks Show Team.
Joules was bred by Jane May and is by Ardenhall Party Piece out of Ardenhall Champagne. It has been some 25 years since dressage superstar Charlotte Dujardin won at HOYS with Ardenhall Royal Secret.
“Joules has been my daughter Emma’s pony for years before Lola rode him,” said Jenny, who noted that this was their first HOYS show pony championship as a show team.
Emma was able to share the moment in the HOYS children’s riding pony of the year championship, as she was aboard second place 148cm Rotherwood Fantasia.
“I’d never sell him,” said Jenny. “Emma has had so much fun on him and Lola has hit it off with him. He’s our boy and I love the bones off him. He’s always been the bridesmaid and today was his day. I just wish I could scale him up and have one of him in every size!”
For Lola, HOYS wins proved like buses. The young rider had landed two classes during her run this year, kicking off with a win in the HOYS 122cm junior M&M final riding her mother Sadie Osborne’s 17-year-old Welsh section A Vennebos Pearly King. And she was also second in the part-bred championship with Joules behind winning 148cm show pony Stanley Grange Gilt Edge.
“She’s had an unbelievable week,” continued Jenny. “This is also the first HOYS win for Victoria since she’s taken over producing the ponies. We competed in seven classes today and we placed in six of them.”
Royal Secret landed the Royal International and HOYS championship double in 1994 with Charlotte’s sister Emma-Jayne Dujardin. She was also champion at RIHS in 1996 with Charlotte, who occupied the top spot with him at HOYS the following year.
Ride judge Louise Gaunt said: “From the moment our champion walked into the ring this morning it had a lovely, smiley, happy face. Our reserve was a smart pony, too, who rose to the occasion in the championship.”
Philip Cooper was assessing conformation: “Our champion pony didn’t miss a beat all day and its little rider was a true show person.”
Reserve for the HOYS show pony championship was the winning 138cm combination, Harriet Storey riding Emma Andrews’ Copybush Time Lord.
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Credit: Alex Robinson
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