British Eventing U21 team riders, David Doel from Reybridge Eventing, and Holly Woodhead from Marlborough helped the British team to a Team Bronze medal at the European Championships at Vale Sabroso Portugal at the weekend. Holly went on to win the individual Silver medal.
David riding Miss Caruso owned by Mrs Jane James and rider lead after the dressage on a score of 34.00 closely pursued by Charlotte Hachmeister of Germany on 36.90, and Alexis Gomez of France on 39.20.
Holly riding her own DHI Lupison was in 18th place on a score of 48.70.
The cross-country phase was a tale of two halves, those who went early in the running order had fine weather, and the going at that time was good. However a major weather front passed over the event with heavy rain lightening and thunder. The downpour akin to a tropical storm forced the organisers to halt the cross country for an hour. After the storm had passed those running in the second half of the field incurred considerable time penalties, and the ground in certain places became very difficult to ride.
David was anchorman for the team and went last, and suffered the worst of the conditions. He finished the cross-country day in 19th place, and Holly who was the first team member to go moved up to 2nd place after a faultless round within the time.
All the team horses trotted up sound, and Holly held her nerve in the show jumping with a carefully judged clear round to stay in 2nd place. The leading German rider had 2 fences in hand as she started the final phase. She had 2 poles down and had the final three fences to jump; the horse clipped the final pole but it in remained in the cup. Germany Gold, and Great Britain Silver in the individual category.
The Great Britain Team of Sophie Beaty, David Doel, Alex Liddle, and Holly Woodhead won the Bronze medal. The Irish Team winning Gold and the Germans winning the Silver medals.
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