Haras du Pin CCIO 3 star
Photo Credit: Hels Tagg
When one door closes...as Hunter Valley ( Gizmo) settles into his routine of rehab at home it was time for the young pretender to step up. The Kincooley Ceili ( William) is undoubtedly incredibly talented but it was time to see if he was going to make that step up to the next level with his first CIC 3 star at Haras du Pin.
CIC's are well supported in France and it was some 109 horses that started in the class so pretty much no where to hide! As well as a large French entry there were some 4 star horses en route to Burghley or WEG, some top class British combinations determined to get to WEG and a smattering of young horses like William.
Between Sammi and dressage trainer Alex Franklin they have turned a big young horse with a bit of a cruise ship type turning circle into a developing advanced horse and he has come a long way from Le Lion D'Angers last year. A score of 33 (67%) was more than acceptable on day one.
The track is always pretty "French" in Haras which means that there are some odd distances and some strange questions! William answered every question in a cool and sophisticated way which is more than probably could be said of the mob in the horsebox which included wo small boys and a baby....imagine!
Showjumping is something that William and Sammi both relish so popping round the track for a clear on Sunday was not such a surprise. Double clear in his first CIC 3 star is quite the cool thing to do and maybe made up a little bit for the fact that the Caen Portsmouth boat was full on the way home so it was a slog to Calias and then back via Dover.
Next stop Blenheim 8/9 year olds for this combination....