Charlotte Arnold excelled in Stainsby Grange’s newly opened outdoor arena to claim first and third in the 1.30m open incorporating the Wright, Johnston & Mackenzie LLP Royal Highland Show (RHS) young masters qualifier.
Charlotte, who returned to competition at the end of February after a two-month winter break, headed the line-up with her 10-year-old Plot Blue x Voltaire mare Leestone Blue Voltet (pictured), also collecting third with nine-year-old gelding ABC Caruso.
“They are both my little miracles,” said Charlotte, who previously nursed both horses through long rehabs following surgery. “They are both mine, I enjoy them and they will stay with me for ever.”
Mare “Porky” was a consistent winner through five-, six- and seven-year-old classes but then had 18 months off following a hock operation at the beginning of lockdown.
“Lockdown was beneficial as we were in no rush to get her back,” Charlotte said. “She is a happy hacker through the week and we only really jump at shows – she’s probably only jumped five times since October. I do a lot of hacking to get them as strong and as fit as I possibly can, so they are always kept fresh and happy.”
Although Porky has stellar breeding, Charlotte describes her as a “dumpy, funny-looking little thing”.
“She is so competitive around 1.40m and 1.45m, a 1.30m was quite easy for her,” she said.
Talking about Stainsby’s new facilities at the Cleveland equestrian venue at Thornaby, Charlotte said: “They almost give the arena a championship feel, there are flowers out and a lot of effort has gone in. It was a really competitive class and winning a 1.30 there felt more special than normal.”
You can read all the latest showjumping news in this week’s Horse & Hound, in the shops on Thursday 21 April.
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