Dres­sage High­lights

Pa­tience has paid off for Melanie Phillips, whose slow-ma­tur­ing geld­ing, Rux­ton Shogun, won four classes in a week­end.

Horse & Hound - - News Insider - By AN­DREA OAKES

“I felt as if we were on a bit of a loop at novice,” said Melanie, who rode the eight-year-old Show­maker son to el­e­men­tary qual­i­fier and freestyle wins at Kings EC be­fore dom­i­nat­ing the el­e­men­tary and medium freestyles at Hart­pury. “But spend­ing time stay­ing there [at novice] and not push­ing him too hard has worked. He has ma­tured so much, both phys­i­cally and men­tally, and he’s cop­ing re­ally well with the en­vi­ron­ment.

“Our mu­sic is a bit of twist on a clas­si­cal theme, which suits his rhythm,” added Melanie. “It’s all com­ing to­gether, hope­fully”

Oc­ca­sion­ally, a horse is worth fight­ing over — as in the case of Waver­ley Dante. Greg Sims’ girl­friend, Stena Ho­erner, cur­rently has the ride on the pre­co­cious five-year-old, who has just scored his sixth con­sec­u­tive af­fil­i­ated win.

“I’m do­ing most of the com­pe­ti­tion rid­ing, but I’m sure Greg will steal him back at some point,” laughed Stena, who bagged both el­e­men­tary classes at Co­leg Cam­bria. “Dante is a lit­tle pocket rocket and takes every­thing in his stride. He finds things so easy.”

Greg, who rode for the Eil­berg fam­ily for six years, bought the Dimag­gio son as a foal from the Waver­ley Stud. The pair headed the four-year-old cham­pi­onship at the na­tion­als last year.

“The minute we saw Dante, we fell in love,” said Stena. “He catches ev­ery­one’s eye, es­pe­cially with his medium trot. You can re­ally ride him for the 10s.”

Melanie Phillips wins four classes with Show­maker-sired Rux­ton Shogun in a week­end

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