The 2023 OBP League Winners: British Eventing Delivers Financial Rewards for Grassroots Consistency

BE100 League winners Sam Lees and Linkswood Rowen. Photo courtesy of Action Replay Photography/British Eventing.

The end of the season signals the completion of British Eventing’s Opposition Beaten Percentage (OBP) Leagues. With a whopping £10K prize pot, riders have eagerly awaited this moment to find out where they finished in the placings and whether they have won a share of the prize money. The wait is now over and we are delighted to announce the bumper final pay-out Top 3, alongside the September/October bonus pay out recipients.

The Leagues are designed around the concept of the Opposition Beaten Percentage (OBP), and acknowledge how competitive a combination was in a particular class – the greater the number of fellow competitors that they finished ahead of, the better the score. Some of our League Champions have finished on a strike rate of an incredible 100%!

Congratulations to our winners of the September/October bonus pay-out and the Top 3 from the bumper final pay-out:

Newcomers League

Our overall winner in the Newcomers League is Ollie Rowlands and 19-year-old Connemara gelding Nimbus Blaise. They won all three of their BE80s this season including Norton Disney (1), Stafford and Little Gatcombe (2) leaving them on an OBP of 100% and rewarding them with a fabulous £500!

Ollie and ‘Luis’ also won £400 when they topped both the BE80 and Newcomers leagues in the May/June period.

“Ollie and myself were completely amazed at winning such an incredible award,” said Ollie’s mum Fiona. “As a family we are fairly new to British Eventing – it was our first ever season last year. We never expected to be at the top of the league at the end of the season, it is just incredible and the perfect end to Ollie and Lui’s eventing season.

“Ollie has decided that he is going to use the prize money to treat his pony to some new things as well as some lessons over the winter to get them both ready for the 2024 season. I am not sure we can top this, but we will be looking forward to another fun season next year doing what they both love best!”

As Ollie had already received Performance Bonus pay-outs earlier in the year, the September/October Newcomer Performance Bonus pay-out goes to second-placed Faith Penn and Erwlas Jump For Gold who receive £200.

1st (£500) Ollie Rowlands and Nimbus Blaise, 100%

2nd (£350) Faith Penn and Erwlas Jump For Gold, 97.9%

3rd (£250) Sam Lees and Linkswood Rowen, 96.3%

BE80 League

The overall BE80 League winner is 16-year-old Sophia Waterer from Suffolk with 11-year-old, 14.2hh Irish pony Nico II. They delivered four winning performances at Poplar Park, Horseheath, Blindley Heath (1) and Savills Chillington Hall Regional Youth Championships to give them an OBP of 100%. They receive a total prize fund of £700.

The pair were also winners of the July/August Newcomer and BE80 OBP League with an OBP of 100% for which they won £400.

“We got him when he was five and my sister Lilly bought him on and trained him,” said Sophia. “When she outgrew him a year ago, I took him on. We went to our first event and despite having never gone cross country on him, we won it.

“This season has been so exciting, but I couldn’t have achieved any of it without my instructor and my parents, so a big thank you to them. It’s surreal to win this prize and I’m looking forward to moving up the levels and hopefully making a name for myself. Next season, here we come!”

As Sophia had already received Performance Bonus pay-outs earlier in the year, the September/October BE80 Performance Bonus pay-out goes to second placed Emily Tamblyn and Knockenpower Rory who receive £200.

1st (£500) Sophia Waterer and Nico II, 100%

2nd (£350) Emily Tamblyn and Knockenpower Rory, 100%

3rd (£250) Ollie Rowlands and Nimbus Blaise, 100%

BE90 League

Our BE90 League Champion, Faith Penn from Coventry, has had a brilliant year, delivering two wins and a third at Solihull, Moreton Morrell and Swalcliffe Park respectively, giving her an OBP of 97.9% with 17hh, 13-year-old coloured gelding Erwlas Jump For Gold. They collect £700 for winning the league, an extra £250 for the September/October BE90 Performance Bonus pay-out, £350 for finishing second in the Newcomer league, and £200 for the September/October Newcomer Performance Bonus pay-out, giving them a total prize pay-out of £1,500!

“I am absolutely over the moon!” said Faith. “Having competed for many years but only just getting into eventing properly in the past year with my special boy Nemo (Erwlas Jump For Gold), I wasn’t aware of the OBP League until recently! So, it was an amazing surprise. This is new for both Nemo and I, as Nemo had never previously evented either, only showjumped, so this is a career change for him too, and he is loving it so much! As I only got Nemo halfway into the season, we had a very successful rest of the season together, including two wins in a row! I’m so excited to carry on our journey together next season.”

1st (£700) Faith Penn and Erwlas Jump For Gold, 97.9%

2nd (£500) Clara Ellen Hubbard and Furido J, 97.5%

3rd (£300) Claire Marshall and Glencroft Magic Moments, 97.4%

BE100 League

Essex-based Sam Lees and seven-year-old Linkswood Rowen were the winners of the BE100 League with an OBP of 96.3%. Sam and Linkswood Rowen were second in their first event of 2023 in the BE100 at Burnham Market International (1), third in the BE100 at Horseheath and won the BE100open at Little Downham.

Their BE100 campaign also saw them receive £300 for winning the Performance Bonus in March/April. For topping the BE100 league, they now win a whopping £1,000, as well as £250 for finishing third in the Newcomer league. Their total prize fund is £1,250!

“I’m delighted to win and we’re really pleased with his performance, this year,” said Sam. “He is a homebred and is seven now He is from our first crop of foals that we bred ourselves. We broke him in and he has really come into his own this year. He did a lot of flat work over the winter and that has really helped his results.”

As our winner had already received Performance Bonus pay-outs, the Performance Bonus passes down to second-placed Millie Plumb and Curolea Mike. They receive a £300 Performance Bonus pay-out for September and October.

1st (£1000) Sam Lees and Linkswood Rowen, 96.3%

2nd (£750) Millie Plumb and Curolea Mike, 95.1%

3rd (£500) Olivia Haddock and Kilpatrick Knight, 93.4%

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