An Exclusive performance
Horse & Hound|November 05, 2020
Andrew Nicholson is on form, while Lauren Innes holds her nerve in a competitive three-star section and an Irish rider makes a worthwhile journey
HANNAH LEMIEUX

Bicton Arena (3), Devon

DESPITE battling rainstorms over the weekend, riders in Bicton’s international classes were full of praise for the undulating cross-country course, including Rathbones CCI3*-L section B winner Andrew Nicholson.

The New Zealander steered nine-year-old Monbeg Exclusive to victory in the long-format class, adding 1.2 time-penalties across country to their dressage of 28.2.

“I have been competing him since 2019 and he came from my friend and Italian rider Stefano Brecciaroli,” said Andrew. “He got him as a three-year-old from Ireland; we often swap around horses and I go over every year and work with him.

“Monbeg Exclusive has gone up the grades really well. We did the CCI3*-L at Lignières at the end of last season, he went well but it was probably a bit too early for him. He’s a straight-forward horse with a great mind and is a good galloper, which suits Bicton.”

The son of OBOS Quality 004 is up for sale.

“I am buying to sell more these days, as I am not getting any younger,” Andrew quipped. “He would be a nice one to keep, but I will try to sell him first.”

Frenchman Gaspard Maksud and Zaragoza II finished 1.9 penalties adrift, with Heidi Coy (Carrigsean Tigerseye) in third.

“Gaspard was at my yard when he first came over from France and he has now built up a strong team of horses,” added Andrew. “He had beaten me in a few one-day events leading up to Bicton, so I thought I can’t let him also beat me in an international class!”

The cross-country in the CCI3*-L produced 76.7% clear rounds.

Recently qualified chartered accountant Lauren Innes secured AJ’s Equestrian Boutique CCI3*-S section C with her own 10-year-old Global Fision M.

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