Hickstead, England – July 30, 2022 – Ireland’s Shane Breen (IRL) collected another title on home turf, picking up his third career win in the Queen Elizabeth II Cup CSIO 5*, held on the majestic field of The All England Jumping Course, one of the three main attractions of the 2022 Longines Royal International Horse Show CSIO 5*.
Kelvin Bywater’s (GBR) challenging 1.50m track caught most competitors out, with just three of the 28 starters producing clears in the opening round.
In the jump-off, Joe Fernyhough (GBR) went first with Calcourt Particle (Spartacus x Lasienna), completing the shortened jump-off track in 45.39 seconds, a mark that would be good enough for third place.
Scotland’s Nicole Lockhead (GBR) went next on Miss Aragona PS (Messenger x Aragorn), delivering a faster clear in 41.38 seconds to take the lead. However, their mark would be surpassed by one combination, the eventual winners.
Hickstead-based Shane Breen (IRL), who won last month’s Al Shira’aa Derby CSI 4*, knows exactly what it takes to win in the Longines International Arena, and he steered the 10-year-old grey mare Haya round to shave more than a second off Nicole’s time to take the win, completing the jump-off course flawlessly in 40.21 seconds.
“She’s incredibly careful, and I was a little apprehensive because she’s never been in the main arena, and she’s only jumped a water in a sand arena. But I was so impressed with her because in the first round, nothing fazed her. In the jump-off, I watched Joe on the big screen, and he did an excellent round – and then when I saw Nicole going I thought how am I going to beat this? So I tried to do the same as Nicole but just go a smidgeon tighter to the white vertical,” Shane explained.
The Queen Elizabeth II Cup used to be an international class open to lady riders only, before a rule change in 2008 meant it became a national championship for both men and women. Shane was the first man to win the trophy, taking the title on Carmena Z in 2008 then adding another win in 2013 with Zarnita. Both Shane and his younger brother Trevor have won every one of Hickstead’s major titles except one – the Longines King George V Gold Cup CSIO 5* – and tomorrow they will each have a chance of completing the set.
The Longines Royal International Horse Show draws to a close on Sunday with the Longines King George V Gold Cup CSIO 5*. Tickets are available online or at the gate, while the action will be shown live on Sky Sports and livestreamed via Hickstead.TV.
Final Results – £12,000 The Queen Elizabeth II Cup CSIO 5*
1) Shane Breen (IRL) & Haya – 0 / 0 – 40.21
2) Nicole Lockhead (GBR) & Miss Aragona PS – 0 / 0 – 41.38
3) Joe Fernyhough (GBR) & Calcourt Particle – 0 / 0 – 45.39
Source: Press Release (edited) from Hickstead Press Office
Photo: © AEJC / Hickstead / Elli Birch / Boots and Hooves Photography