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The British Horse Society Coveted British Horse Society Horsemastership Trophy goes to French groom

Raphael Chateaulan, groom to top International showjumping rider Michel Robert of France, won this year's British Horse Society Horsemastership Trophy at the Royal International Horse Show, held at Hickstead (23-27 July). The coveted award, highly prized among the showjumping grooms at the show, is presented to the groom who, in the judges' opinion, has done most to ensure the highest welfare and turnout standards for their charges.

The BHS Horsemastership Trophy has been part of the Royal International Horse Show since it became the Society's flagship event over 50 years ago. Spot checks take place throughout the show taking into account the general fitness and condition of the horses, turnout, which includes grooming, saddlery and equipment, and the turnout and general manner of the groom. Horses are seen in their stables and when they are competing to give an overall view. Attention to detail can win or lose the trophy and this year, with the typical English summer weather conditions turning the showground into a sea of mud, this aspect was more important than ever.

Pat Gaywood, BHS development officer for London and the south east, was joined by Donald Kear BHSI to judge the competition and commented, "The competition is hard fought and standards are always high but this year they were exceptional. Using a BHSI as a co-judge ensures a valued and experienced opinion as they know what grooms have to put up with. It's never easy having to draw up a short list and we were delighted to have Ronnie Dawes, groom to Tim Stockdale included. Ronnie has won the competition for the last two years and was high on the list but Raphael was a hard one to beat, he was brilliant."

The winning groom was presented with the magnificent BHS Horsemastership Trophy, a sash, rosette and £200. Six runners-up received rosettes and £100 each.


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