Supreme Pony ‘Charles’ is back in business for the Brineton Colne Mountain & Moorland Mini Pony of the Year Championship
The prolific winning Mountain & Moorland pony and reigning Ruckleigh School Supreme Pony of the Year here at Horse of the Year Show (HOYS), Thistledown Van-der-Vaart, has made his own piece of history on day one of the 70th anniversary celebrations. With his usual style and elegance in abundance, the Welsh section A charmed the judges to defend the Brineton Colne Mountain & Moorland Mini Pony of the Year Championship and keep the title for a fourth consecutive year.
Lucy Richardson’s 10-year-old pony has had a new jockey for the 2018 season. Lily Richardson has ridden ‘Charles’, as he is known at home, to victory in all three of his HOYS qualifiers this season. Lily came straight out of finishing second in the Brineton/Kare Plus M&M First Ridden Pony of the Year earlier in the morning, riding her mother Lucy’s Shetland Briar Snowman, and on to Charles to contest the Colne M&M Lead Rein Pony of the Year.
Producer Sharn Linney, who had five ponies in the lead rein and first ridden sections, hasn’t let the pressure of the supreme title affect the combination this year. “We’ve taken the opposite view and can just enjoy it because he loves it. It’s like it’s his show; he comes out of those curtains and just loves it,” she said. “We haven’t done a lot with him this year – we try and keep him as fresh faced as we can.”
Despite being a prolific HOYS winner, Sharn tells us that Charles is just a normal pony at home: “He’s out all day and loves his food!”
Reserve Champion went to another Thistledown pony bred by Sandy Anderson – and second place in the Lead Rein class – Holly Levett’s Thistledown Velvet Touch. The nine-year-old Welsh section A mare was ridden in the ring by her son George.
First place in the First Ridden class was Zara Johnstone-Evans’ stunning Dartmoor pony Pumphill Fandago ridden by Maisie Chester.