WELLS DANCING Brave, the three-year-old Shetland Pony stallion that was Standard Champion at last week's live-streamed Royal Highland Showcase, has already been sold to a buyer who was watching online.

Bred by the Sleigh family of Wells Shetland Pony Stud, the prizewinning pony's turn in the ring at the Showground on Wednesday was enough to convince Neil Brown of Kinness Stud that he had to make a bid for him – and while Neil will not reveal how much he paid, he did say it was the most he has ever paid for a pony.

But he is worth it – Wells Dancing Brave is part of a long line of Royal Highland Show winners, and first came to Neil’s attention when he won the Shetland Foal Class at the Royal Highland Show in 2018. However, due to Covid-19 restrictions, Neil was unable to organise a stud visit, so had to wait until the Showcase to see how the pony was progressing.

He explained: “When I saw Wells Dancing Brave standing in the ring while watching the live judging from the Royal Highland Showcase, I made up my mind to purchase him – his quality just shone through. I know from Harry Sleigh there were two other buyers interested, but I have purchased from the Wells stud many times over the years, so I guess that went in my favour.

“I look forward to welcoming Wells Dancing Brave to our stud and sadly, my late father Chic who founded the stud in 1987 won’t be here to meet him, however I know he would have approved of my purchase as he had a great eye for stock which he passed onto me.”

Harry Sleigh, whose son Stewart showed Wells Dancing Brave in the ring, is delighted to come away with another Highland Show rosette to add to his collection and find a buyer for Wells Dancing Brave:

Harry said: “The Royal Highland Show is the shop window for the best livestock and this year, while different in format, still managed to achieve this. I am a life-long supporter of the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland and the Royal Highland Show and this story just serves to reinforce the importance of the show and this year’s showcase to individuals, businesses and the whole agricultural sector. I would like to commend RHASS for making this event happen against such a challenging environment.”