Shane Breen adds another Hickstead title to his list by claiming the top spot in Sunday’s ClipMyHorse.TV Sussex Cup, riding the 10-year-old grey homebred Scarteen II.
The £6,000 1.40m Grand Prix class formed the feature class of week one of the All England September Tour, and plenty of showjumping’s leading national talents came forward for the final. Fourteen of the 35 qualified combinations produced a first round clear, to guarantee an ultra-competitive jump-off.
But with the benefit of being drawn last to go, having qualified three horses for the final, Shane Breen was able to shave two seconds off the leading time to take the win, ahead of Ronnie Jones and Key West II (39.62sec) in second, and third-placed Alex Bishop on Thomascourt Emirates (39.96sec).
“It’s always nice to win here and I was delighted with Scarteen,” said Shane, who finished second in the first of the two Grand Prix qualifiers, and third in Friday’s edition. “He’s been very good every day, and I thought he jumped fabulously in the jump-off today.
“A couple of people were telling me how quick Ronnie was and that Alex had done an inside turn somewhere, so I was weighing up the the odds a little bit – but Scarteen has such a big stride and he’s naturally quick. On the home run it was 10 strides to the last and I thought I could do nine, and I say could have even done eight – he was eating up the ground,” added Shane, who will return for the second week of the show in the hope of winning next week’s LeMieux All England Grand Prix.
Stoner Jewellers 1.20m Open Championship
A name that will be familiar to everyone in the horse world is that of AP McCoy, the most successful jump jockey off all time. His daughter Eve collected her first Hickstead International Arena title on Sunday when winning the Stoner Jewellers 1.20m Open Championship, riding her father’s 11-year-old gelding Cocktail D’Azur.
Eve was one of nine combinations to get a first round clear, with only four of these delivering a second clear in the jump off. McCoy has obviously inherited the family propensity for speed, as she crossed the finish in a time of 39.95sec, followed by Christopher O’Bryan and Cirrus (41.04sec).
“The first round he was really good – he was a little bit strong, but I don’t think he’s ever jumped in that ring before, but he wasn’t spooky at all,” said Eve. “In the jump-off it was good but as we came round to the double I was a little bit deep but he got me out of trouble.”
Fifteen-year-old Eve is making a name for herself in the sport, having had a number of international wins this season with Cocktail D’Azur. She was also part of the bronze medal-winning team at the Children on Horses European Championships at Vilamoura in 2021.
She’s definitely going to be sticking to the coloured poles instead of any birch fences, much to the relief of her father. “He prefers me to go into showjumping – he wants to keep me as far away from the racehorses as possible!” said Eve, who trains with Shane Breen.
Hickstead Novice Championship
In the Hickstead Novice Championship, Sevenoaks rider Daisy Lewis won on board Maserati TV. The pair also won the Hickstead Novice 1.10m Amateur Championship at the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting back in June.
“Maserati knows what he’s doing when he goes in there, he knows his job,” said Daisy, who also won the qualifier class on Friday. “He’s so chilled at home, I can ride him at the buckle end, but he livens up when we go in for a jump-off.”
Philip Spivey rounded off a successful week with a win in the Hickstead 1.30m Open Championship, riding Paddington 192.
The Essex rider has been on flying form all week, having claimed the Breen Equestrian 1.40m Open classes on Thursday and Friday with Billy Pearl.
For full results click here.