Double booking for Damsel
Horse & Hound|April 22, 2021
A young rider makes her debut in open horse classes, landing a spot at the 2021 Hickstead final in the process
ALEX ROBINSON

BSPS Area 15A, Arena UK, Lincs

THERE was cause for celebration for Eve Duggan and connections when their bay mare Withymoor Damsel (Daphne) rose to the occasion to secure early Royal International (RIHS) small hunter and open 153cm show hunter pony tickets, before capturing the hunter pony championship sash.

The 10-year-old Daphne – who was bred by Sharon Burt and is by Kings Composer – is owned by Eve’s mother Monique Drabble. This was Eve’s first time contending open hunter classes, and the pair were only pipped to the top spot by Jayne Ross aboard the Harper family’s Wall Street, currently unbeaten this season.

“This year is my last in 153cm hunter ponies, so we want to do as much as we can,” said Eve, who trains with Katy Carter and Leon King. “Leon will ride Daphne in the small hunter classes. We just went in for the experience today.”

Jenny Harker’s pretty 128cm campaigner Ardenhall Blenheim (Bob) ridden by Lola Carabine took the RIHS show pony accolade. It was the 12-year-old gelding’s second time in the ring with Lola.

“We were looking for a little jockey for him and we thought Lola would be ideal,” said producer Victoria Harker. “They’ve just clicked. He’s like a mini horse to sit on and he loves to be out showing.”

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