British Equestrian (BEF) has named the horse-and-rider combinations who will contest the World Breeding Federation Eventing Championships for Young Horses at Le Lion d’Angers, which hosts a CCI2*-L for six-year-olds and a CCI3*-L for seven-year-olds from October 15-18 in the Loire Valley, France.
Britain tends to be a force to be reckoned with at these championships, and will bring forward the maximum allowed entries of three combinations in the six-year-old class and twelve in the seven-year-old class. Among their nominations is Piggy March‘s Cooley Lancer, owned by the Lancer Stud, who took the six-year-old title in 2019.
The six-year-old selections are as follows:
- Monbeg Hendricks (Harlequin Du Carel x Alda Puissance), owned by Adrian Sweet and ridden by Kitty King, with Adrian Sweet’s MHS Monbeg Junior (Quidam Junior X MHS Julianna Joy) in direct reserve
- MHS Brown Jack (OBOS Quality 004 x Gowran Lady) owned by Fred and Penny Barker and ridden by Tom McEwen
- Cooley Rosalent (Valent x Bllaney Jewel), owned by Paul Ridgeon and ridden by Oliver Townend
The following combinations will act as reserves for this class:
- Codebreaker (Cody x Dolce Vita K), owned by Eliza Stoddart with Heather Sandell, Georgina Stoddart, Sue Brankin Frisby and ridden by Eliza Stoddart*
- Cooley Goodwood (OBOS Quality 004 x Burrane Kate), owned Susie Wood and ridden by Piggy March
- Evita AP (Con Air x Elektra), owned by Brett Bullimore and ridden by Sarah Bullimore
- Captain Crissy (Fuerty Captain Carismo x Common Cruise), owned and ridden by Jess Watts
The seven-year-old selections, with some still subject to achieving the required MERs (*), are:
- Ardeo Premier (Hold Up Premier x Playgirl), owned by Debbie and Neill Nuttall and ridden by Alex Bragg
- Izilot DHI (Zavall VDL x Zilottie W), owned by Alex Moody and Ros Canter and ridden by Rosalind Canter*
- Moonlight Charmer (OBOS Quality 004 x Enchanted Heart), owned by Teresa Stopford Sackville and Charlotte Heber Percy and ridden by Laura Collett*
- Forthright (Frankfort Boy x Bouncer Girl), owned by Margaret Silver and Barbara Hervey and ridden by Matthew Glentworth*
- Igor B (Vittorio x Erica B), owned and ridden by Kristina Hall-Jackson*
- Fools in Love (Harlequin Du Carel x Tisrara Cruise), owned by Philippa Heler and Hayden Hankey and ridden by Hayden Hankey*
- Cooley Lancer (Coeur De Nobless M x Tante Catoche Du Houssoit), owned by The Lancer Stud and ridden by Piggy March
- I Diablo Joe (Solaris Amoureux x Scylla), owned by Geoffrey Burton and ridden by Piggy March*
- Irene Leva (Everglade VDL x Oleva), owned by Kim Franklin, Kerry Smith and Rhian Smith and ridden by Rhian Smith
- Ballingowan Leia (Future Trend x Ballingown Boula), owned by Susan Goodall and ridden by Polly Stockton
- Darcy De La Rose (Quite Easy x Catharina), owned by Wendy and Johnnie Watherston and ridden by Georgie Strang*
- Briarlands Sweetango (Jumbo x Briarlands Matilda), owned and bred in GB by Guy Avis and ridden by Izzy Taylor*
British Eventing CEO Jude Matthews has also released a statement regarding travel to France for the selected riders and their support teams.
“The health and safety of our members, organisers, officials and volunteers is of the highest priority and those returning from France to the UK, under current government guidelines, will need to self-isolate on their return unless they are exempt,” she says. “The BEF provides exemption for Elite Senior Athletes and essential support staff on the BEF World Class Government funded programme. BE will currently provide exemption to those who qualify as an elite athlete where the status of the country in which they were competing changes whilst they were there and, only in a situation where an individual travels from one COVID-19 secure competition environment to compete in another COVID-19 secure environment in the UK.
“In addition, BE requires each person who obtains exemption to have a negative COVID test on arrival back in the UK before being able to compete. Those returning from France to the UK, under current government guidelines, will need to self-isolate on their return unless they fulfil the above exemption criteria. All athletes selected are being provided with the necessary information on quarantining and testing and we continue to closely monitor changes and updates to guidance and protocols in relation to travel.”
While this slightly conflicting advice doesn’t make it clear whether exemptions will be available or not — France is currently not on the UK’s ‘safe travel’ list, and so this would be unlikely to qualify as a situation in which the status of the country suddenly changes — it does appear that the British contingent, at least, are committing to an end-of-season trip to France, which bodes well for the only CCI5* of 2020, held the following week in Pau.