Kings of Wessex equestrian team qualify for Hickstead

PUBLISHED: 15:47 27 June 2018 | UPDATED: 15:47 27 June 2018

Kings of Wessex pupils going to Hickstead.

Kings of Wessex pupils going to Hickstead.

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The Kings of Wessex equestrian team have qualified for a national riding event at Hickstead.

Five members of The Kings of Wessex Academy equestrian team travelled to the prestigious All England Jumping Course at Hickstead in Sussex where they once again excelled.

Competing in the 90cm jumping with style event where half the course is made up of show jumps and half of cross country jumps, the team were judged based on their approach to the jump on the correct line, the speed and showing a difference between show-jumping and cross country.

On the first day, the team of Iona Impey, Alice Sandiford, Harriet Tutt and Maisie Warren were thrilled to take first place with Iona placed second and Alice sixth individually. This was a particularly impressive performance as they beat 26 other teams.

The following day, the team entered the 90cm eventers challenge championship with a mixture of cross country and show jumps, which are all timed and the winner is the nearest to the optimum time.

This was a challenging course with many skinny jumps and tricky lines, but the Kings team excelled and every rider went clear and was the only team to do so out of the 33 who qualified.

The team was delighted with the result considering it was a championship class. Well done to the winning quartet Iona, Alice, Kathryn Thomas and Maisie.

The Kings team then took part in the 1m elite show jumping team qualifier for Hickstead in August in which they jumped second and recorded four quick times; although this time they finished on four faults.

It was a nervous wait as the next 10 teams rode and Kings were in first place until the penultimate team jumped and produced a team score of zero. The last team to go also finished on four faults.

However, the Kings team qualified as the fastest and took the second qualifying spot. Iona, Alice, Kathryn Thomas and Harriet Tutt all qualified and will return to Hickstead in early August.

The last class of the day was the 1m eventers championship in which Iona, Alice, Harriet and Kathryn all rode well in what was a tough course and only produced six clear rounds.

Alas, the competition did not go their way, but they still finished in the ribbons with a credible seventh team place.

This was a wonderful and rewarding weekend with great results and the Kings’ team are looking forward to competing at Hickstead in August.

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