Two young horses were awarded elite premiums on Tuesday (16th August) at The Baileys Horse Feeds/ British Breeding/British Equestrian Federation (BEF) Futurity at Richmond Equestrian Centre in North Yorkshire.
The BEF Futurity Evaluation series aims to identify British bred young potential sport horses and ponies destined for careers in dressage, eventing, showjumping or endurance. It may even find the stars of the future who will go on to compete at World Championships or become Olympic Champions.
Nicola Hazlett’s three-year-old filly, Angelic Proposition (Primitive Proposal x Inish Free), came home with the highest score of the day – an elite premium of 9.07 in the eventing section.
Nicola said: “I am thrilled with this result. Angelic Proposition has all the right credentials and it is great to have people such as evaluator Chris Hunnable firmly agreeing.” Nicola produces young horses professionally, she bought Angelic Proposition from her breeder, Katy Newton as an eventing prospect.
Angelic Proposition will go to the Futurity eventing final at Osberton horse trials in Nottinghamshire next month and will then campaign young horse eventing classes next year.
This is not the first success this young mare has had. As a foal she won at the Great Yorkshire Show, Lincoln County and Bramham.
The other elite premium at Richmond went John Dodson’s yearling filly, JD All That Jazz (Up With The Lark x Minora Bay) with a score of 9.00 in the eventing section. David Dixon of the Stanley Grange Stud prepared and presented the horse. He said: “It was good to get the elite mark with All That Jazz. She has also won at county level in-hand and will go on to have a career in eventing.”
Stanley Grange also presented Katherine Watson’s yearling filly, Springtime Melody (Grafenstolz x Saddlers Hall) – who scored a higher first premium of 8.92 also in the eventing section. This filly won the supreme championship at Bramham earlier this year. David said: “It is the first time a yearling has taken the supreme at Bramham. Springtime Melody’s dam, Failinis raced and evented.”
David went on to say: “It is great that the Futurity now requires all sires and dams of youngstock to be graded. This is filtering down and riders are now looking for horses bred from graded mares that they know have been assessed and are sound. This will help British breeders in the long-term.”
Sharon Bayston’s eventing filly foal, Parklodge Side By Side (Diarado x Houston) took a higher first premium of 8.96. in the eventing section.
Sharon said: “I am delighted with her. It is a bit frustrating to be so close to elite and not quite get there but we have had some really positive comments. Side By Side is the fourth horse I have bred from my mare, Zarina. Three of them have attained higher first Futurity premiums and one (Parklodge Gunna B) got an elite. Zarina is a good mare for the job!” Zarina is back in foal to Britannia’s Mail for 2017.
Earning a higher first premium of 8.80 in the showjumping section was Christian Cotter’s yearling filly, Be My Juliet (Womanizer x Maltstriker DV). This filly was bred by Rachel Hughes.
Christian’s partner, Sarah Cockerham said: “Be My Juliet was just brilliant at the Futurity. Whenever anyone comes to the yard at home they comment on her conformation and movement, so it is excellent that they also thought the same at Richmond.” Christian bought Be My Juliet as he and Sarah also own a four-year- old, Be My Romeo, who is also by Womanizer.
Tom Walling from Cumbria Arabians earned a higher first premium of 8.71 with colt foal Cumbria New Dawn (Cumbria Black Beaujangles x Alhaaarth). Tom’s girlfriend Fiona Pearson said; “We are just thrilled with the score, this is the first time we have been to the Futurity.” Tom bred Cumbria New Dawn from his thoroughbred mare, Feminist who won and was placed in flat races.
Fiona continued: “We wanted to breed an Anglo-Arab foal and used our stallion Cumbria Black Beaujangles. Feminist is back in foal to Cumbria Black Beaujangles for 2017. Cumbria New Dawn is for sale and we are hoping that his good Futurity score will attract better competition riders.”
The Futurity is a continually evolving process, 2013 saw the introduction of the Futurity equine bridge which is now being run as an extension of the Futurity evaluations. The Futurity equine bridge provides top Futurity graduates with the direction and support they will need as 4 year olds so that they begin their early years under saddle in a way that allows for sustained physical and mental development. In order to be eligible for the Futurity Equine Bridge all horses must obtain a Futurity score of 8.5 or above and a high enough vet score in the in their three-year-old year.
The BEF’s Head of Equine Development Jan Rogers said, “We are increasingly noticing that breeders, buyers and riders of British bred horses are finding that a Futurity premium is a very useful aid in helping assess these horses. We are also seeing a marked improvement in the standard of youngsters entered in the futurity, which is very good news for the future of British breeding”.
The 2016 Futurity evaluations will run from the 15th to the 31st August, covering 11 venues nationwide with a total of 12 days of evaluations.
Futurity scores are used by many breeders as a credible marketing tool for their young horses, adding value to a young horse whilst it is still too young to have achieved a performance record.
For more information, visit http://www.britishbreeding.org.
Watch today’s elite scorers here: