The Working Hunter Pony Champion from earlier in the week at Horse of the Year Show has taken the ultimate accolade in showing.
Coco Bongo proved that her presence under the spotlight is as compelling as her jump when she beat off all other pony Champions from across the week to be crowned the Ruckleigh School Supreme Pony of the Year 2019.
The 10-year-old grey mare is owned by William Calder, and Chloe Lemieux has had the ride on her here at HOYS; their fifth show together. Chloe is riding the pony in 133cm Workers while William’s daughter Jessica is currently in Nursery Stakes classes with her.
A delighted Chloe said: “I was really happy to be in there [the Andrews Bowen International Arena] and not expecting it at all!”
William added: “It’s surreal. We were hoping for the best but when it happened we couldn’t believe it.”
Coco Bongo had a huge support team with her including Chloe’s mum and dad, Lisa and Robert; William, Jessica and family; and Chloe’s trainer Sam Roberts.
Chloe’s dad, Robert Lemieux, said: “Sam started Chloe in showing and she has been a guiding light.
“Showing is a really good foundation and she wouldn’t be as strong or technical a rider as she is now without it.”
Coco Bongo has been very consistent this season, placing second with Chloe and Jessica in the 133cm and Nursery Stakes at the Royal International Horse Show, and winning both classes at the Royal Highland Show.
Sam said the pony has “shown such versatility” and Jessica will now progress with her HOYS Champion pony next season.
Founded in 1909, Ruckleigh School in Solihull is a co-educational preparatory school that offers challenging education within a warm, family orientated setting. This inspiring school has been awarded the prestigious accolade of Prep School of the Year by the Sunday Times and prides itself upon its reputation of developing talent and securing scholarships and offers from the region’s leading Grammar and independent secondary schools.
For more information on Horse of the Year Show 2019, please contact Horse of the Year Show Press Office, Grandstand Media Ltd. Tel: 02476 858205. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ruckleigh School Supreme Pony of the Year 2019, Chloe Lemieux riding Coco Bongo © Julian Portch