Fakenham rider Abby Clark leads local bid for Qualifier honours

Abby Clark on Marlie II, best local rider in the Discovery Qualifier. Photo: www.pauls-pix.co.uk

Abby Clark on Marlie II, best local rider in the Discovery Qualifier. Photo: www.pauls-pix.co.uk - Credit: Archant

Spirits were high for the BS Junior Christmas show at Forest Edge, with two days of competition and a Blue Chip Championship qualifier up for grabs.

Day one got off to a flying start for a few West Norfolk Pony Club members. Charlie Crane rode Gorfelyn Hopkins into fifth place in the first class of the day, the Intro 70cms. Lillianne Fenn, competing at her first affiliated show aboard the lovely bay Jubbly Bubbly, took third in the British Novice, closely followed in fifth by Jessica Cunnington on Fronarth Baby Spice. This was one of three ponies Jess competed at the show, also picking up fifth in the Discovery on Max Dun and a second in Sunday's British Novice on Hey Mickey II.

The second day was another full schedule and sisters India and Atiya Bussey carried on their recent good form, with India finishing third in the Newcomers riding Just Out Of The Money, closely followed by younger sister Atiya riding the eye-catching palomino Ranchwood Latte. The two then reversed the placings in the following Foxhunter class, with Atiya taking third from her sister in fourth.

Sunday's main attraction for competitors was the Blue Chip Animo Pony Winter Discovery Championship qualifier. With just over 25 starters it was always going to be a hotly-contested class with eight qualifying places up for grabs for the finals at Hartpury Arena in Gloucestershire in April.

Sue Peasley's first-round track cut the entrants down to 14 to contest the jump off. There weren't many places to shave off valuable seconds, and some of those trying lowered expensive fences.

In the end it was Katie Cameron from Cambridgeshire, riding her mother's Dundee Spirit, who came out triumphantly.

Abby Clark from Fakenham, riding the relatively inexperienced Marlie II, was the best local rider, finishing fifth.

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Abby's mother Rebecca said: 'Our main aim was to get our last Discovery double clear, it just happened to be a fast double clear! This is their first affiliated season together, and having already gained their British Novice and now Discovery double clears, the Blue Chip qualification is really the icing on the cake.'

This week sees action from the senior showjumpers at Forest Edge as they host their BS Pre-Olympia Show running from today through to Sunday, with a good selection of classes.

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