Presented by Beta

3RD - 5TH AUGUST 2018

Behind the Stable Door

Killy Puissance

Class: The TopSpec Challenge for The Corinthian Cup, the British Amateur Championship

Stable name: Lilly

Rider: Danielle Meehan

Owner: Rider

Vital stats: Irish-bred 15.2hh 10-year-old bay mare by Puissance out of Nite Lite. 27 BE points

In the beginning: Danielle teamed up with Lilly five years ago, having bought her untried, on the strength of a photograph, from Ireland.

This is the pair’s fourth season at Novice and Danielle hopes that they will continue to progress to Intermediate and Advanced level.

Her rider says: “Lilly was intended as a six-week project to keep me busy before starting university – five years later, here we are,” laughs Danielle. “When I first saw her she had feathers a mile long and a mane down to her knees, but there was something about her that I really liked.

“At the end of her five-year-old year I took her to a couple of BE90s and she really impressed me. After that there was no way she was going anywhere.

“Lilly loves a fuss and is quite a diva. She much prefers being in her stable, where there are people around to feed her, than in the field”

Competition record: 1st Lincolnshire BE100 2014; 2nd Kelsall Hill (2) 2015; 3rd Somerford Park (2), Richmond (2) novice and 51st Osberton CCI* 2016; 7th Catton Park ON 2017

Festival record: 20th and double clear in this class last year

Favourite pastime: eating spearmint Polos – she goes crazy for them

Dislikes: she doesn’t really have any; she’s pretty easy-going

And one more thing… the duo competed in this class last year shortly after Lilly had returned to action after a sprained ligament injury. They still managed to finish 20th with a double clear

Daytona Dreamer

Class: The Dodson & Horrell British Novice Championship

Stable name: Breezer

Rider: Katie Barber

Owner: Rider

Vital stats: Irish-bred 16.3hh 6-year-old bay gelding by Cobra out of Sunny Shore. 22 BE points

In the beginning: Katie bought Breezer from Goresbridge Sales as a four-year-old. He was never destined to be an eventer; the plan was for him to hunt with Katie’s partner, Stephen. But when Stephen spent some time sidelined through injury, Katie’s groom at the time, Ruth Foster, started eventing him and the seed was sown

His rider says: “Breezer did quite well with Ruth, so when she stopped working for us I thought I’d better take over,” explains Katie. “He went well in a few BE100s, won a novice and before I knew it he’d qualified for Gatcombe.

“He’s the sort of horse who gives 110% all the time. At six-years-old I expect he’ll be one of the youngest horses in the field, but he’s hunted with the Quorn and seen a lot of the world and I’m confident he’ll cope with the big atmosphere”

Competition record: 1st Moreton Morrell (1) novice, 2nd Rockingham and Catton Park novice and 3rd Brand Hall novice regional final 2017

Festival record: first-timer

Favourite pastime: eating – he’s ruled by his belly and would do anything for food. He’d jump round Badminton if he knew there was an apple at the end

Dislikes: dressage – he loves his jumping and hunting, and would probably slit his pasterns if he was made to do dressage all the time

And one more thing… Breezer was given his stable-name by his breeder, Tipperary-based Breda Nolan, whose husband’s favourite tipple was the fizzy alcopop, Bacardi Breezer

Ustinov Van Elsenham

Class: The Smith & Williamson British Intermediate Championship

Stable name: Tonto

Rider: Claire Deuten

Owner: Valerie Scott

Vital stats: Dutch-bred 16.3hh 13-year-old coloured stallion by Utah Van Erpekom out of Whitney. 70 BE points

In the beginning: Tonto has had various riders during his career. He was started by Craig Nicolai before moving to Caroline Powell and then Alex Hua Tian, with whom he competed up to CCI2* level. Claire took over the reins at the beginning of last year when her trainer, Lisa White, spotted the stallion and thought he’d suit her. The pair quickly gelled, qualifying for this championship on only their third run together after finishing second in an intermediate at Aston-le-Walls

His rider says: “From the word go it was clear how well Tonto and I got on. He really is my horse of a lifetime and has already taught me so much. He never says no and gives so much in every phase, often trying too hard. You also would not know that he is a stallion; he travels on the lorry with my mares and spends the majority of his time in a field. He really is a pleasure to look after and a yard favourite. He has his favourites and loves the greys in my yard – they always get a whinny!”

Competition record: Winner of three novices in a row in 2011; 2nd Keysoe (2) intermediate 2013; 2nd Aston-le-Walls intermediate and 21st Ballindenisk (2) CIC2* 2016

Festival record: First-timer

Favourite pastime: Hacking and generally being made a fuss of

Dislikes: Days off

And one more thing… Tonto is by no means a one-trick pony; he is also a successful showjumper and, as a youngster, was ridden by the Whitakers.

Reve Du Rouet

Class: The British Eventing Open Championship CIC 3*, incorporating the Event Rider Masters

Stable name: Balou

Rider: Sarah Bullimore

Owner: Brett Bullimore

Vital stats: German-bred 17hh 13-year-old bay gelding by Balou Du Rouet out of Onassis Queen. 754 BE points

In the beginning: Sarah spotted the three-year-old Reve Du Rouet on a website and travelled to Holland to try the son of the famous jumping stallion Balou Du Rouet. As a young horse Balou was easy to produce and worked his way easily up the grades. He did have one hang-up, though – he hated being unloaded. When the horse transporter brought him over from Holland and dropped him off the driver told Sarah that the gelding had spent all night on the lorry because he couldn’t unload him. Once at her yard, when Sarah tried to lead him down the ramp he leapt 10ft in the air and cleared the whole thing in one.

His rider says: “Balou has always been a bit special in more ways than one. He is very sensitive to atmosphere can sometimes suffer a meltdown on the big occasions – often when you’re least expecting it. Although he’s 13 now, he’s still a work in progress and, with [recently appointed British team trainer] Chris Bartle’s help, I have completely turned around his training over the winter. I took him hunting for the first time last autumn and he loved it – I was petrified!

“Chris has encouraged me to forget about the past and focus on the future, and as a result my mind-set has changed. Balou still has so much more to give and I’m very excited about his autumn campaign.”

Competition record: 7th Tattersalls CCI3* 2013; 13th Lexington CCI4* and 19th Burghley CCI4* 2014; 29th Badminton CCI4* and 18th Pau CCI4* 2015; 20th Luhmuhlen CCI4* and 22nd Burghley CCI4* 2016

Festival record: 6th The British Eventing Open Championship CIC 3*, incorporating the Event Rider Masters 2016

Favourite pastime: Being in his paddock

Dislikes: Discipline and conforming – he likes to challenge the status quo

And one more thing… Sarah’s ride in The Dodson & Horrell British Novice Championship, Corouet, is by the same stallion – Balou Du Rouet – as Balou, and out of Sarah’s very good CCI4* mare, Lilly Corrinne. He was born by embryo transfer in 2011