Up and coming stars shine in Novice at Belton

      Emily King and Kings Rose


An Eventful Life is filming all competitors on cross country at Belton International - find out more here


Competition got underway at Belton House yesterday, with novice competitors the first to perform. 'Novice' is a slightly misleading term – these competitors still face fences set at 1m10, so it is not for the faint hearted. Emily King claimed the first of these sections riding Kings Rose, with Kitty King (no relation) topping the second leaderboard aboard Cristal Fontaine.


      Another French horse is a rising star for Kitty King


Kitty King



       Local rider Lauren Blades takes the honours in the Novice Section C


However, it was local rider Lauren Blades who had the best morning.

Lauren, from Wymeswold, won section C riding Rodnikova Dream while also piloting Max Faktor into fifth place and Coulston Topcat into sixth in the previous two classes. Lauren said of Angela Schumann's seven-year-old Rodnikova Dream that she thinks the sky might be the limit for this horse.

“Angela approached me out of the blue this time last year, inviting me to ride 'Roddy', who is the last of her homebred horses. She's been so trusting and given me a totally free rein in producing him.

“He isn't a 'big yard' horse – he loves a lot of individual attention, and as long as he wants to do something he has huge ability so it's up to me to make sure he enjoys it! He was great today, and despite the overnight rain the ground on the cross country course was remarkably good.”


Lauren Blades


The Open Novice Under 18 class was won by Market Harborough based Daisy Hammond and Apollos Copywright, while the Under 21 Open Intermediate class also went to a local rider, Loughborough's Mollie Summerland, with her own nine-year-old Charly Van Ter Heiden.


      Daisy Hammond and Apollos Copywright took the Open Novice Under 18 class


Two intermediate classes also ran today, both going to Rio 2016 veterans. New Zealander Tim Price claimed one aboard Spartaco, while Ireland's Jonty Evans took the other on Dreamliner.

In the International classes Christopher Burton and Bubby Upton currently lead the 'two star' sections after performing smart dressage tests, with Pippa Funnell on MGH Grafton Street holding the advantage in the Lycetts Grantham Cup 'three star' – although less half a penalty separates the top four combinations with more set to perform their dressage tests tomorrow - read our full report on the CIC3* here

Tomorrow's forecast looks good, the tradestands are packed with products to tempt shoppers of all persuasions, and the equestrian action kicks off at 8am.

More information about Belton International Horse Trials can be found at www.belton-horse.co.uk, and about Bransby Horses at www.bransbyhorses.co.uk.