Three Cheers for Bolesworth Puissance
Holly Smith completed a remarkable puissance Grand Slam when she shared in a three-way tie for victory at the Equerry Bolesworth International Horse Show.
British star Holly had already claimed puissance titles at the Theraplate UK Liverpool International Horse of the Year Show, London International Horse Show and Horse of the Year Show.
And she added Bolesworth to her collection, clearing a fifth round height of 2.20 metres (7ft 2in) on Quality Old Joker to share top spot in the Equitop GLME Puissance with fellow British challenger Alfie Bradstock, riding H. d’OR, and Ireland’s Michael Pender with Hearton du Bois Halleux.
A total of eight combinations began the maximum five-round contest, and five remained in contention – the eventual winners, plus Nick Benterman and Ireland’s Nano Healy, who both took bricks out of the giant red wall.
The top three, though, could not be separated as they showcased graceful, athletic and power jumping at its finest.
Holly said: “He has won the four now. He never normally does very well outdoors – he has never gone well at Dublin, for instance – but he was great tonight.
“It is quite special, actually, for these horses to keep doing it over and over again. A lot of them do it once or twice, but these seem to keep coming out and keep doing it.”
Alfie is a former Liverpool puissance winner, and he said: “Going after Holly after every round, you knew she would go through to the next round, so it was just about keeping yourself in contention.”
And Michael, also a previous Liverpool champion, added: “My horse jumped brilliantly tonight. I am absolutely delighted.”