Freestyle does it again in the Hartpury heat

In plus 30 degree heat, Charlotte Dujardin kept her cool to continue her education of the uber talented nine year old Mount St John Freestyle in the Hazlewoods FEI CDI3* at the Hartpury Festival of Dressage.

Charlotte Dujardin (Photo © Kevin Sparrow).

 

It wasn’t a faultless performance as young mare showed signs of struggling in the heat but the fantastic far outweighed the bad and the judges duly awarded the duo 77.43% for victory. There were blips in the piaffe, normally a strong point, but the heat was clearly a factor for her. Charlotte was obviously frustrated as the magic 80% with her partner, owned by Mount St John Stud, still eludes her in her bid for selection for the World Equestrian Games in September.

Second spot went to Carl Hester with Ann Cory, Lady Anne Evans and his own Hawtins Delicato. British bred ‘Del’ continues to grow in confidence with every outing and his test today was only marred by a disagreement in piaffe. “He was passaging so beautifully and high and I just didn’t prepare well enough,” said Carl. “He’s so nearly there where I can start asking him for maximum in a number of the movements so there’s plenty more to come,” he added.

In third was a welcome return to competition for Spencer Wilton and Jen Goodman’s Super Nova. It was magic to see them back in action after a break since last year’s European Championships and while they were a bit ‘ring rusty’, the De Niro gelding still had that cheeky spark and they looked like they’d never been away. It was a confidence building test and with a score of 75.84% they threw a firm marker down to the selectors.