Andrew Nicholson has been awarded the 2014 breeder’s prize for the highest placed British-bred horse at Burghley Horse Trials, following Avebury’s success in the 3* event earlier this month.
As breeder, Nicholson won the award and a £1000 prize from the British Horse Foundation and Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials 2014 for the success of Avebury, who is owned by Mark and Rosemary Barlow. It was the third consecutive year Nicholson and Avebury have won Burghley.
Avebury, registered with Sport Horse Breeding of Great Britain (SHBGB) has now amassed more than 2000 British Eventing points. His Burghley victory this year followed on from wins earlier in the season in the Barbury CIC3* event and the British Open Championships at Gatcombe.
The £1000 prize comes from the proceeds of the annual Breeders Awards Dinner held every January.
Avebury is a 14-year-old grey gelding by renowned event stallion Jumbo, out of 2008 Breeders Awards Dinner outstanding broodmare award winner, the thoroughbred Bairn Free, by Bairn (USA).
Nicholson bought Bairn Free out of training, and she won and was placed in Novice events under the name Memento, and was then put in foal. “I really value a good amount of thoroughbred blood in an event horse,” Nicholson said. “When the cross -ountry gets longer, at 3* and above, the thoroughbred blood is what you need to make both the distance and the time”.
Nicholson sold Bairn Free to Mark Chamberlayne in 2001. She has proved to be a consistent broodmare with several progeny who are competing at the highest levels, but sadly died in 2006..
Nicholson has a full brother to Avebury, the 11-year-old Tristar II who has won at advanced level and also finished 11th at Bramham in 2012. Mark Chamberlayne owns and bred Avebury’s half-brother, the nine year old gelding Tomaz Gudanov (by Baryshnikov) who has competed to advanced level.
Avebury’s sire, Jumbo, is an international advanced eventer who has sired Badminton, Burghley, Bramham, Blenheim, Saumur and Rolex Kentucky winners, including dual 4* winner, Headley Britannia. He stands at the Grafham Stud in Devon for owner Carolyn Bates.
Jumbo was the top sire of young eventers for the 2013 season in the British Eventing stallion rankings and is second top eventing sire of all time, in the British Eventing all-time top sire rankings.
Breeders’ Awards Dinner Chairman, Desi Dillingham, said: “We are delighted to be able to offer this prize. British breeders are really beginning to reap the rewards for the talented horses they are consistently breeding”.