An electric atmosphere and a revelling crowd set the glorious stage for the first outright Tagg Puissance win since 2009 at Horse of the Year Show (HOYS). Douglas Duffin and Volcano were the victors, clearing a whopping 7ft 3in to claim their second victory in this supreme challenge.
"I was joint first in 2011 with Joe Clayton (Leonardo)," said Scotsman Douglas. "It's great to give the crowd an outright winner though."
Four made it through to the final round, but only Douglas and his British-bred horse were able to come up with all the answers the infamous red wall posed.
"It's only his third Puissance and his second win," said Douglas, "and both of those have been at HOYS, which is just the best show there is."
The home crowd got to celebrate their home-grown World Number One show jumper in fine style after Ben Maher claimed the Thistledown Stakes with Kavanagh. "I hadn't had a great start to the week. My top horses are having a week off, so I had to borrow some," Ben explained. "Kavanagh belongs to John and Laura Renwick, and Laura usually rides him. I have a different style to her, so it's taken us a few days to click. Now we have, it's been great to give the home crowd a win and I think I'll ride him in the Leading Show Jumper of the Year."
It looked as though Guy Williams was going to secure victory in The Accumulator while his closest rival was some five seconds adrift. But, with an eye-wateringly fast round, Germany's Daniel Deusser squeezed a further second from the course with Domingo.
"My horse was pulling me to the first fence, so I thought I best go with him," Daniel joked. "I didn't think anyone would catch Guy, but I got a good run through the first five fences and took one less stride to the last."
Source: Press release from hoys.co.uk
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