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Posted on Dec 31, 2019 in Articles

Persimmon Rode by William Fletcher is the first horse to be on both Eventing and Showjumping teams for Great Britain

Persimmon Rode by William Fletcher is the first horse to be on both Eventing and Showjumping teams for Great Britain

Persimmon was originally evented by Kitty King and had some great results including:

6th Blenheim 2014 in the CCI 3* (OLD FORMAT)

3rd Belton 2015 in the CIC 3* (OLD FORMAT)

2nd Bramham 2015 in the CCI 3* (OLD FORMAT)

Persimmon then went on to be on the European Team for Great Britain in 2015 at Blair Castle and finished 4th.

We caught up with William who now competes Persimmon in Showjumping:

Am I right in thinking that this is the case about this horse being on both eventing and showjumping teams?

As far as my research has been, I have looked up and I can’t find any horse thats been on a team for eventing and for showjumping. Senior teams that is. He has been on two teams with me in Denmark and in Morocco, and he was with Kitty on the team at the Europeans in eventing when they won team bronze I think and he was individually 4th.

So tell me how you came about this horse and how you have the ride?

He has a bit of a personality and he decided he didn’t want to do dressage anymore so the owners said ‘right thats it, we won’t try and make him do something he doesn’t want to do ‘ They sent him to me and said if you want to have him then we are more than happy for you to take him off our hands and he can go and jump.

They thought he would be a really nice 1.30m /1.40m horse maybe. Through the first year we jumped some 1.30’s and he was doing well. Then he sought of out of no where popped up and jumped amazing in a fox hunter second round which was really really big and we just missed out on qualifying and thats when we thought we have a really good horse here.

From then on he’s kicked on over and over again and he’s been my breakout horse, he’s just done everything for me, I wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for him, no chance

William and Persimmon were jumping the CSI4* Monday night , we asked him what the course was like as he had finished course walking

Its a good course, I think he has more than enough talent to jump it, so fingers crossed we will be able to put in a good performance

What does it mean to you to be competing here or why do you choose to compete here?

It means so much, we don’t get many of these standard of shows in our country and Nina does such a good job to put on two 4* shows, so me this is the highest level I have competed at, so I am really trying to push to get into these shows and jump these Grand Prix’s to get as much experience as I can so that hopefully we can get to the next level.

Images by Lucy Hall photography – all rights reserved and are subject to copyright

There has as far as I can see only ever been one other horse that has had a top showjumping career after eventing first and that is Derek Rickett with Hydrophane Coldstream at Hickstead in 1977. The horse was a latecomer to show jumping having previously been an eventer. He always looked to be judging his fences accurately, not wasting energy by jumping higher than necessary. The partnership were British team stalwarts earning Gold in the inaugural World Team Championship in 1978.

Image credit to Linda Briggs and Golden age of Showjumping – all rights reserved

Will jumped a lovely round in the evening on Persimmon and they showed their class but unfortunately they had 8 faults in the CSI4* Which put them out of contention, however it is still some achievement for an ex eventer! – who said event horses can’t show-jump?!. Full credit to William fletcher who has done an outstanding job with Persimmon and we look forward to seeing how they progress on through next year, an exciting combination to keep your eyes on.

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