Apart from a few errant showers on Thursday, the weather conditions were near perfect for this year’s Royal Highland Show light horse section which lived up to expectations, with a quality entry and some excellent equestrian competition bringing out the best in everyone involved.

The show continues to attract a popular following from exhibitors who are happy to travel to compete for Horse of the Year Show qualifying tickets as well as offering rounded competition for all other horse sections.

Taking two prestigious sashes this year and heading to HOYS, will be eight-year-old Dumfries-based rider, Charlotte Wilson, who took the BSPS first ridden pony class on board the eight-year old part-bred Welsh, bay mare, Lochar Love in the Mist, sired by Rotherwood Brigadoon, out of Mystic Moonlight. Millie is owned by Charlotte’s grandmother, Joann Monaghan and bred by the late Mrs Bell, of the Racks, Dumfries.

This is the first time Charlotte has competed as a first ridden at RHS, but previously the duo won the mini championship at RHS in 2017 and in 2018 as a lead rein pony, led by her mum, Kim Wilson.

This is the pony that Charlotte learnt to ride on at the age of three and is more than a show pony as they happily hack out and gallop through the fields.

On her second pony, Rosedale Markus, Charlotte won the lead rein show hunter pony class and the qualification for HOYS.

This eight-year old bay gelding has only been with the family for just under a year but already they have won both Royal International qualifiers at the BSPS Winter Championships at Arena UK and will be competing at the International in July.

They will also compete at North of England and Great Yorkshire, before heading to HOYS in October.

Champion in the Scottish native horse and pony breed sections for the Sanderson Trophy went to the standard Shetland Pony, Wells Reliance, sired by Wells Extra Special, out of Wells Valerina, and is owned and shown by Harry Sleigh.

This home-bred, black Shetland stallion based inTurriff, in Aberdeenshire, was running with the mares on Monday and only just brought in for RHS and was going back to mares after the show.

Reserve was the Clydesdale, Doura Magic Touch, a two-year old sired by Glebeview Sir Charles out of Ballinrees Lady Jayne and shown by Miss Charlotte Young (see also our heavy horse report)

The HOYS Cuddy supreme in-hand championship went to the three-year-old Welsh section B pony, Walseker Colorado, after just earlier taking the M and M Championship and the Waxwing Trophy. Colorado, or Red as he is called at home has won all of his classes as a foal, yearling, two-year old and as a three-year old, bar one where he was second.

His sire Paddock Rio, was bought as a foal from his breeders, Bernard and Maureen Butterworth, of the Paddock Stud. Bernard is in his 90s and follows both ponies successes with lots of enthusiasm.

Paddock Rio qualified for the HOYS Cuddy Inhand final in 2016 at Royal Norfolk and at Royal Cheshire in 2017 and 2019 just recently. This year will be his third trip to HOYS.

His sire is Eyarth Rio, owned by the Telynau Stud, he has also competed in the final. So Colorado makes it three generations to qualify. After HOYS in October, he will be turned away to grow on and mature.

Reserve champion went to Swanlake, a bay filly sired by Llanarth Topcat and out of Dance All Night, which was bred and exhibited by Messrs Harforth and Dixon, from Middlesborough, Cleveland.

The Queen’s Cup – which moves around the livestock and horse sections each year – this time was for competitors in the light-legged section.

With a variety of champion horses and ponies eligible to come forward for this trophy, this year saw six under-saddle and five in-hand, including the champion donkey in the ring.

The winner was Wynbrook Playfair, ridden by Izzy Kinvaig. The pair had earlier taken the junior M and M small breed ‘Pony of the Year’ championship securing a ticket for the final at HOYS in October.

Wynbrook Playfair is a seven-year old chestnut, Welsh C gelding owned and produced by Mrs Sarah Parker, from Whitchurch, Shropshire.

Reserve went to the M and M lead rein pony, Briar Snowman, a 10-year old grey Shetland gelding, owned by Mrs Lucy Richardson and ridden by her daughter, three-year-old Penny. The team had driven through the night for seven hours to get there for a 7.30am start. Now that’s commitment.

The St John’s Wells Trophy for the best two in-hand ponies by the same sire, saw a Highland pair sired by Dunedin Marksman take the trophy. This was for Mrs Jane McNaught’s seven-year old, grey dun Highland gelding, Dunedin Mascot, out of Dunedin Fairisle, and Fraser and Lorna Boyd’s eight year old, mouse-brown Highland mare, Jessicah of Wooplaw, out of Holmedown Kona.