FEI World Singles Championships
Kronenberg, Netherlands
28 August - 2 September 2018

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Team GBR goes to the
World Championships
Travel Blog by
Rupert Barnard
READ MORE ABOUT THE DRIVERS   STARTLIST & RESULTS
Follow: Single Horse World Championships GBR on Facebook for the latest updates.
Sunday 2nd September
Sunday morning of the world championships means 2 things: Cones, and a new world champion will be crowned!

Bright sunshine and dewy grass greeted our driver as they walked the course before the 0825 closure, with the first competitor in at 0830 sharp.

For GB, the 3 girls were to drive in the morning session, with Frank driving in the afternoon after the Para’s had completed their classes.

First to run was Sara, who was the first person to break the time allowed of 180 seconds. Though she was clear on time, 5 cones meant that Sara had 15 to add to her overall score, finishing her world championships on 195.80.

Next in was Karen, who’s measured round resulted in 3 cones down and time. In total Karen added 12.10 penalties to her overnight score, resulting in a final score of 189.46.

Following-on later in the morning was Tracey, who herself followed UK-based Aussie Gail Bain.

Tracey’s round resulted in 5.96 to add (1 cone and time), giving Tracey a total after all 3 phases of 171.00.

With a gap in proceedings until Frank's round in the afternoon, attention turned to the Paras' cones and supporting our GB drivers there.

Unfortunately, Frank’s round never came to be, as he withdrew from today’s cones competition having made the decision that his horse Z was not fit to compete.

Our commiserations to Frank and his support team, and best wishes for Z.

As such, when all the competitors had run, the world championships here in Kronenberg concluded with Bartlomiej Kwiatek of Poland being crowned World Champion for Single Horses!

The Team competition was won by the Netherlands.

Final scores and placings for our drivers were:

  • 33rd - Tracey Fletcher (171.00)
  • 55th - Karen Scott-Barrett (189.46)
  • 60th - Sara Clough (195.80)
  • Ret. - Frank Campbell
  • Team ranking: 13th
  • Special mention for Gail Bain, who came 43rd on 179.93.

We owe a massive thank you to all of our sponsors, supporters, family, friends and fellow competitors for making this an unforgettable experience. Chef d'Equipe Minta Winn and Team trainer Wilf Bowman-Ripley especially, thank you for all your effort behind-the scenes and in the run-up to this event.

All that remained was the prize-giving ceremony and to pack up and head for home. The support crews got away first, and were subjected to a beautiful sunset over the channel while eating Steak and Ale pie, chips and gravy – what a welcome home!

While most of the drivers are travelling home tonight, a couple are travelling Monday – we wish everyone travelling home safe and hassle free journey!

Thanks once again to everyone that has made this week possible, and to everyone who has contacted us via the Facebook page with your messages of support – we really appreciated them and hope that both the page-posts and this blog have given a taste of what Kronenberg 2018 was all about.

We already know that the four-in-hand world championships is headed to the same site in 2020 – hopefully we will see you there, supporting our GB four-in-hand team!

Saturday 1st September
Marathon day and everyone was up early, either on a last check of the obstacles, or prepping for the day ahead.

Sausage baps flew out of the kitchen to settle nerves, and soon the 3 girls were down at the start of A.

Our drawn times were far from perfect, with Tracey, Karen and Sara running in the first 15 competitors (in that order).

With Tracey starting B at 9.30am, Team trainer Wilf Bowman-Ripley and his team of spotters/camera operators (Terri Bailey, Hugh Scott-Barrett & Rupert Barnard) were in place early, keeping an eye on the still-dewy ground and the first few times.

Meanwhile Chef Minta, Vet Rosie Mould, and Physio Hazel Potter worked tirelessly to ensure that horses and drivers were managed through the starts and halt with the utmost care and attention.

Tracey was the first Brit on the course and put up some very competitive times in the early part of the competition.

Pepsi was well-up for the challenging obstacles, and groom Rhian worked hard on the back to keep all the wheels on the ground. After a clear round, Tracey’s score was 103.70.

Karen was next to run, and again had a good clean round with Dio threading through the obstacles with ease, making life easy for Karen’s groom Emma. Karen also drove clear, with a score of 110.15.

3rd of us away on the marathon was Sara, who had chosen some slightly different routes to suit her horse. These seemed to pay off and resulted in a score of 109.33.

After the 3 girls were home safe and clear, there was a bit of a gap before Frank’s round in the afternoon.

This allowed us all to regroup, and then support the GBR Paras,  who were on course in the middle of the day.

It was great to see so many GB supporters out in force, and wonderful to watch the para-competition unfold, with our own team doing so well (all the details on the ParaBlog).

14:00 hours (ish) saw obstacle 1 come under attack from Frank Campbell on a mission. All through his round, Frank was posting consistently fast times.

As such, he was often in the top 3 so far for each obstacle, with his horse ‘Z’ really responding to the crowds (often 3 or 4 deep, and cheering is definitely encouraged!).

A 91.80 penalties, his marathon score proved to be the best of the Brits.

Following some world class driving around technically challenging obstacles, the final placings for the Marathon are:

  • 7th Frank Campbell (91.80)
  • 36th Tracey Fletcher (103.70)
  • 54th Sara Clough (109.33)
  • 57th Karen Scott-Barrett (110.15)

Going into the cones, overall placings are:

  • 13th Frank Campbell (151.38)
  • Joint 38th Tracey Fletcher (165.04)
  • 55th Karen Scott-Barrett (177.36)
  • 64th Sara Clough (180.80)

After today’s marathon we’d like to say a massive thank you to our team Veterinary and Physio support crew!

Rosie and Hazel have been brilliant this week and have got involved with all aspects of the “championship-life”, and have also been brilliant fun!

 

Friday 31st August
Two tests down, two to go! As such drivers were split between course-walking and dre sage prep for much of the day.

First thing we were surprised with a case of shortbread from our UK supporters who had come out to support the team!

Thank you guys, but shame you ended up behind bars!

Tracey was first in at 1045hrs and put down an elegant test, scoring a 61.13.

We had a wait until 1630hrs for Frank’s test during which some great dressage tests were laid down and the 50-penalty barrier was broken with a 47.58 by French driver Renaud Vinck.

While Frank was in the warm-up arena just about to go in, the Austrian driver Rudolf Pirhofer drove what turned out to be the world championship-winning test, scoring 46.73.

Despite this, Frank drove really well in his dressage test, resulting in a score of 59.58 and the best GB singles dressage result.

With dressage complete, the scores on the doors were:

  • 35th Frank Campbell 59.58
  • 46th Tracey Fletcher 61.34
  • 62nd Karen Scott-Barrett 67.21
  • 75th Sara Clough 71.47

Summing up the first 2 days of competition, Chef d’equipe Minta Winn said:

“All the GB singles have driven consistently under immense pressure.

The whole camp has pulled together supporting each other throughout, and I am hopeful of some fast, competitive rounds on the marathon tomorrow as we compete against the best in the world.

Its lovely to see so many GB supporters out here, and we look forward to hearing you cheering out on the marathon course tomorrow!”

Focus is now on tomorrow’s marathon. The times have been drawn and are as follows:

  • 35 Tracey Fletcher 0850hrs
  • 36 Karen Scott-Barrett 0906hrs
  • 34 Sara Clough 0914hrs
  • 33 Frank Campbell 1319hrs (+41mins for Start B)

Live stream on:
www.worldhorsedriving.com (cost: €5.00)

 

Thursday 30th August
People were up at dawn for a range of tasks. Team Clough were on dressage prep ready for 9am, while Rup set off measuring obstacle routes to see where our drivers could save those extra seconds.

Despite packing it, the measuring wheel didn’t make it to Holland , so naturally he made one from a bike wheel, a cones measuring stick, and a cable tie! Some quick maths and a marker-pen saw it calibrated and ready for use – much to the amusement of the rest of the team!

09:00 hrs saw Sara enter the dressage arena to begin her World Championships. She put in a good test and received a score of 71.47 (36th place on Thursday night).

Next into the arena was Karen at 13:55 hrs. She also laid down a good test despite a one-off case of “scary sawdust” at ‘X’, and received a score of 67.21 (29th on Thursday night).

At 14:45 hrs, Australian driver Gail Bain (well known on the UK circuit and based at Ashfields) went in and drove a stormer of a test, putting in a great effort and is currently (Thursday night) lying in 5th on a 54.94.

In the afternoon, drivers and navigators went out on a course walk with team trainer Wilf Bowman-Ripley.

With options already in mind and measurements for reference, the drivers were able form a plan of attack for the obstacles.

Following the course walk, it was back to camp for chicken curry and a team meeting, before heading over to the main marquee for the Groom’s Games! Representing Team GB in the on-foot mounted-games style races were: Rosie Mould, Hugh Scott-Barrett, Nick Hammond and Mike Hodgson.

They did us proud and we made it to the quarter-finals only to be beaten by Germany (who were later disqualified for cheating!).

Focus tomorrow is on Tracey and Frank’s dressage, while all drivers will be using the day to finalise their routes for Saturdays marathon.

Wednesday 29th August
Team GB announced !

GB trot-up started at 9.30am so a fairly reasonable start. Luckily the forecast rain held off for the morning, so it was bright sunshine on the car park.

Each horse was presented and we’re pleased to say that all horses were deemed “fit to compete” without any issues (though Sara’s horse definitely enjoyed the atmosphere).

All GB horses have passed the trot-up. Following the trot-up, with all horses fit, Minta and Wilf made the final selection who would represent us as Team GB, and who would compete as an individual. The following 3 drivers will form the team:

  • Driver: Karen Scott-Barrett   Horse: Don Diego   Groom: Kallem Sun / Emma Olsson
  • Driver: Tracey Fletcher   Horse: Mastro’s Noble Boy   Groom: Rhian Fletcher
  • Driver: Frank Campbell   Horse: ‘Z’   Groom: Michael Hodgson

And the individual place has been awarded to:

  • Driver: Sara Clough   Horse: Windfall Daylight   Groom: Sue Pridding / Nick Hammond

The draw for dressage has been completed and our drivers will be competing during the next two days (local time):

  • Sara Clough (No.34) Thursday 30th Aug – 0900hrs
  • Karen Scott-Barrett (No.36) Thursday 30th Aug – 1355hrs
  • Tracey Fletcher (No.35) Friday 31st Aug – 1045hrs
  • Frank Campbell (No.33) Friday 31st Aug – 1630hrs

Once the trot-up was complete the marathon course opened for walking so the afternoon was spent exercising, watching para-dressage and having a first look at the obstacles.

Meanwhile back in camp Terri Bailey and Mick were working hard preparing our offering for Nation’s night. We managed to fill a Rangerover to the brim with food and drink, and would like to thank all those who made it possible:

  • Terri Bailey – homemade Cottage Pie and Beef in Yorkshire Puddings
  • Tunnock's - Caramel Wafers
  • Mrs Darlington's - Jams and Chutneys
  • The Bury Black Pudding Company - Black Puddings
  • Joseph Heler Cheese- Cheese selection

We shared our table with the GB Para team and between us we put on a fine spread.

As ever, our Pimm's was very popular, but the range of food and drink available round the marquee was phenomenal – everything from flatbreads to whale meat - and all delicious!

Soon the party ramped up, as did the rain (we were extremely grateful for our Musto jackets!).

We wish all our drivers the best of luck for the upcoming days of competition, and will be sharing all the latest updates via our Facebook page: Single Horse World Championships GBR

Tuesday 28th August
The team had been allotted afternoon training arena sessions, so this morning gave time to exercise and/or relax.

After a rousing alarm call of the Chef d'Equipe's hairdryer (!) the boys went shopping to Horst (via America!) while preparations were made for the afternoon.

Starting at 2.15pm sharp, each driver had a 15 minute session in the training arena, with Wilf on hand to make the most of the time.

Following this, each driver had the opportunity to familiarise themselves with the route to the main dressage arena before doing it for real on Thursday/Friday.

Frank (No.33), Sara (No.34), Tracy (No.35) & Karen (No.36) drove in number-order and were all pleased with their sessions.

It was then back for an early supper of stir-fry (pork or beef) before donning our Team kit for the opening ceremony.

This took place about a mile up the road at Tuverland, the local theme park.

So after gathering all the nations together on the showground, the procession took off.

There were lots of rumours around a surprise for each team of drivers, Chef and Vet and these were confirmed when we arrived in in Merlin’s Magical Kingdom for the ceremony.

The organising committee and local dignitaries began by wishing us all luck and a great week of competition ahead, and then introduced each nation by way of a log-flume-style boat ride!

It certainly beat the usual opening ceremony lap of the main arena, but it was a long walk back to the stabling area in the evening for late night checks.

Trot-up is at 9.30am Wednesday morning, with the team being announced afterwards - keep an eye on the Facebook page for the latest updates!
Monday 27th August
Drivers and horses were able to get across on the 04:20 ferry into Calais. This meant they were able to miss most of the traffic and take driver-breaks at their leisure.

Meanwhile the support crew were in the queue to get into the showground for 8am, and were soon in, and ready for the first of our competitors to arrive.

We have been allocated a good sized space of hard standing, with taps and hook-up. The facilities here are brilliant!

First job was to bed down stables, and then the burco-boiler went on, ready for a brew when the team arrived.

The drivers rolled in across the morning, making it easy to play Lorry-Tetris!

Frank was first to arrive, having had a good run with only 10mins traffic round Ghent. Next in was Tracey, whose portable stabling we are using as the camp-kitchen, alongside Terri Bailey’s caravan.

Karen arrived just in time for lunch, having taken an additional break in France and Sara arrived a little later, having elected to take a later ferry.

With horses settled in stables, we set-to building camp.

With 20 to feed communally every night, we’re running a big central cook-house, with separate coffee-bar and no less than 4 kitchen-sinks!

Horses were walked out across the road on the showfield in the evening, and everyone got together for Spaghetti Bolognese and Alfie Budd’s birthday cake.

Our first team meeting followed, and then after a long day it was an early night for all!

Sunday 26th August
While drivers, horses and grooms had a final day’s training at Ashfields (our assembly point before the off), it was a dawn airport run to Heathrow for Rup to pick up Mick Ripley, our cook, who flew back from his holiday in Kenya early, specially to support the team.

For the trip to Kronenberg we split into two groups, with the advance party of the support crew setting off  on Sunday morning to be ready and waiting to welcome the drivers onto the showground on Monday.

Chef d'Equipe Minta travelled out with Zoe Morgan (Australian Chef), while Mick and Rup hit the road via the supermarket for a last-minute shop.

Once down at Dover on Sunday afternoon, the weather deteriorated with wind, rain and waves picking up - not good news for the horseboxes aiming for the midnight boat!

 

Wilf led an international convoy of Team GBR, Team AUS and the Irish Para-team out of Ashfields at 8 pm down to the boat.

While horses were still sailing when we left, by midnight it was clear that no-one would be sailing that night.

Luckily we were able to secure stables at ETA-dover until the morning, and our thanks to the ETA team for their help at short notice.

While the team were stuck in Dover, Minta, Zoe, Rup and Mick made it across to Valkenswaard for their overnight stop – thanks to Boyd Exell for letting us stay.

Many thanks to everyone for their support
Firstly, we owe a massive thank you to all of those who have helped Team GB get to the Single Horse World Championships:
  • MUSTO - Team Clothing
  • BEF World Class - Support and Liaison
  • British Carriagedriving - Our Governing Body
  • Naff Products - Support With Products
  • JS Teamwear - Support Teamwear
  • Ashfields Carriage and Polo Club - Training Ground-Support
  • Julian Burlington - Printing
  • Larry Bensusan - Sport Physcology
  • Terri Bailey - Logistics and Catering
  • Karen Scott Barrett - Support/Clothing
  • Mick and Rup - the Camp’s Comedians

And to the many unspoken heroes who have made it possible for us to represent our country here at Kronenberg 2018.

Follow: Single Horse World Championships GBR on Facebook for the latest updates.
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