Houghton International Horse Trials

A highly competitive field of young riders battled it out for this year’s CCIYR 2*section at Houghton Hall in Norfolk on 31st May.

Sophie How became the new U21 Champion, having led from the front on the 9-year-old Bojangles HRS, a ride she took over from her brother Tom several years ago. The pair took the title on a score of 40.3, having added just 0.8 cross country time to their impressive dressage score.

The 20-year-old from near Market Harborough commented on her ride: “Bojangles really deserved this win; he’s so nearly been there so many times and then the odd blip has ruined things,” said Sophie. Sophie rides full time from her base at home as well as spending several mornings a week with JP Sheffield of whom she said: “I wouldn’t be here today with this title without JP, he is everything you wish for from a trainer.”

Last year’s Champions, 20 year old Will Furlong from East Sussex and his own Livingstone II, had to settle for the runner up spot this year. The pair finished on their dressage score of 47.2, one of only two young rider combinations to do so, they had climbed up the leader board from eighth after the first phase.  18 year old Sam Ecroyd from Flintshire claimed the final podium placing riding his own Wodan III.

Sophie received gifts and rugs in kind from the section title sponsors as well as from the Worshipful Company of Saddlers, plus a British Eventing cut glass bowl.

BE Chairman of the Board, Paul Hodgson presented Sophie How with her winnings at Houghton, and she also earned a year’s loan of a Suzuki ATV quad bike.

Photo: © Fiona Scott Maxwell

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