Royale Tale takes the Equitop Senior Newcomers

Royale Tale takes the Equitop Senior Newcomers

Welshman Mark Edwards claimed his first Horse of the Year Show victory after recording a dramatic win in the Equitop Senior Newcomers.

Mark, who is based near Cowbridge in the Vale of Glamorgan, guided seven-year-old Royale Tale home after a class where 11 combinations reached the jump-off.

But even after posting a time of 31.82 seconds, he faced an anxious wait as Sussex-based Nicole Pavitt chased her fifth newcomers title at HOYS aboard Johnson II.

She went agonisingly close, clocking 31.83, while Scotsman Graham Babes finished third on Monks I Am Casall, a further two seconds adrift.

Nicole apart, previous winners of the senior newcomers include Billy Twomey, Michael Whitaker and Laura Renwick, and Mark added his name to that illustrious list in fine style.

“With Nicole going after me, I knew she was going to be really quick, so I had to lay something down and risk everything,” he said.

“Royale Tale was super. She tried her heart out and made my job easy.

“She is only a seven-year-old, and really is one for the future. She is by our sire Montreux Tale, and it is a busy week, as we’ve got the the Foxhunter and the Grade C to come.

“She is naturally quick, and when you go into a jump-off you have got to be confident.

“This is one of the most prestigious shows in the world, and to gallop down that centre-line (in the presentation) makes all the hard work worthwhile.

“We felt we had a live chance today, and she really stepped up to the plate.”

  • Audio interview with Mark Edwards, winner of the Equitop Senior Newcomers at the Horse of the Year Show


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