Bolesworth Dressage Round-Up, Day One

CHARLOTTE DUJARDIN and Mount St John Freestyle take the honours

Despite the rain, Dressage competition got underway today at Bolesworth International Horse Show with fine wins from two of Britain’s best, Carl Hester and Charlotte Dujardin. There was further success for Sarah Higgins, following victory at Somerford Park Premier League Dressage and a selection of Young Horse Class finals to call winners on too.

Grand Prix

Double Olympic dressage champion, Charlotte Dujardin was on top form today winning the UK Grand Prix on board 10-year-old mare, Mount St John Freestyle – a horse that could take her all the way to next year’s Tokyo Olympics.

The pairing delivered a dominant display in the Theraplate UK Grand Prix, finishing on top by a considerable margin from fellow British rider Gareth Hughes, with Classic Briolinca.


Charlotte’s score of 80.348% included a perfect 10 score for the extended trot from British judge Jo Graham. And to complete a memorable day for the London 2012 and Rio 2016 gold medallist, she also took third spot aboard another rising star, Erlentanz.

Less than 0.2 of a percentage mark separated the riders in second, third and fourth, with fifth place going to Richard Davison and Bubblingh and Emile Faurie taking sixth on Cafe’s Caletta.

Reflecting on the Grand Prix, Charlotte said:

It was Mount St John Freestyle’s first event since the World Equestrian Games last September, and at the beginning of the test I was rushing her a little bit. But I was absolutely thrilled with her. She tries so hard, and there were so many highlights. Her canter work felt very solid, and she feels so much stronger than last year.

Charlotte, who looks well on course to launch a major medal challenge at Tokyo 2020, has been a major supporter of dressage at Bolesworth.
Intermediate 1 Freestyle to Music

Carl Hester brought the curtain down on the first day of the show with a stylish victory riding Brioso, with a score of 78.520%.

Carl headed the 14-strong field of dressage talent, with Portugal’s Luis Principe taking the second spot aboard R.S Raphael on 75.800%. Jessica Dunn and Alicante Valley secured third with a score of 74.205%, just in front of fourth-placed Alice Oppenheimer and Headmore Davina on 74.165%.

Advanced Medium

Cheshire rider Sarah Higgins dominated the British Dressage Advanced Medium class, sponsored by Rawson Digital, as she continued a rich vein of form. Sarah, who is based in Knutsford, finished in first and second place scoring 70.526%, on 10-year-old gelding Elixer, and 68.947% with Easter Bunny II, respectively.

Sarah Higgins and Elixer winning the Rawson Digital Advanced Medium
Sarah Higgins (GBR) & Elixer – British Dressage Advanced Medium 98 – The Equerry Bolesworth International Horse Show 2019

Third place went to Emma Woolley, riding Retro Hit, on 68.882%.

Dressage Young Horse Finals

The International Arena also played host the Young Horse Competition with the five-year-old final, sponsored by Owens Horseboxes, being won by Lucinda Elliott and Hawtins Lirica.

Lucinda, who is from North Yorkshire, produced a stylish performance that gained a score of 81.800%, with Dan Greenwood and SJL Baks Zacco taking second on 79.800%. Alex Hardwick finished in third aboard Joie De Vivre Prins.

Alex, from Bishop’s Stortford in Hertfordshire, returned to the arena to win the six-year-old final, sponsored by The Brooke.

Alex Hardwick (GBR) and Izaloe - The Brooke Dressage Test for 6-Year Old Horses Final - The Equerry Bolesworth International Horse Show 2019
Alex Hardwick (GBR) and Izaloe – The Brooke Dressage Test for 6-Year Old Horses Final – The Equerry Bolesworth International Horse Show 2019

It proved to be a close contest, with Alex guiding her mare Izaloe to victory on a score of 78.000%, which proved enough to edge out Zoe Sleigh and For Rome – they finished on 77.800%. Greg Sims and Waverley Dante completed the podium places on 77.400%.

The seven-year-old final, sponsored by Brabners, completed a busy opening session, and it proved a closely-fought affair.

Elizabeth Allen, from Chew Magna near Bristol, took top honours with Heraldik on a score of 71.943%, and Beth Bainbridge was runner-up aboard Habouche (70.343%), while Tom Goode and Feine Schufro were third on 70.029%.

Despite the news today of Bolesworth International being closed to the public, you can watch all the action from the comfort and warmth of your home via


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