Weekend Wrapped: Jumping young guns prove potential at World Cup Finals

The next generation of British showjumpers gave a glimpse of their talent at the FEI World Cup Finals in Leipzig.

Olympian Harry Charles and Romeo 88 continued their fine form with a fourth-placed finish in their maiden appearance at the showpiece event.

Charles and Romeo jumped a brilliant double clear to finish second in class on Friday and sit third coming into the final day, narrowly missing out on a medal in the end.

22-year-old Charles and Romeo were named as Team GB’s alternates for Tokyo and were called to jump in the individual competition in Japan.

Since then, he has won the Horse of the Year Show and cracked the world’s top 30 with Romeo by his side.

Only two British jumpers have ever won the World Cup finals - Nick Skelton and John Whitaker.

Whitaker’s nephew Jack barely touched a fence all week and finished in fifth place alongside grey Equine America Valmy de la Lande. John himself came 12th.

Elsewhere, Britain’s sailors started their 2022 season by bringing back six medals from Trofeo Princesa Sofia in Mallorca.

They were led by Olympic silver medallists John Gimson and Anna Burnet, returning to begin their Paris campaign in the Nacra-17 class.

Gimson and Burnet won the penultimate race and finished 12th in the medal race, with reigning Olympic champions Ruggero Tita and Caterina Banti prevailing overall.

Eilidh McIntyre, reigning Olympic champion in the 470 alongside Hannah Mills, finished tenth as the class’ new mixed format made its debut.

Tokyo Olympian Saskia Tidey competed as part of a new 49er FX pairing with Freya Black and the pair were dealt a cruel blow when they were disqualified from the last race of the final series, relegating them to 11th overall.

Michael Beckett’s first-ever World Cup medal was a gold one in the ILCA 7 (formerly Laser) class.

“This is one of the first World Cup regattas I ever did, ten years ago, and so the number of people here and the scale of the event makes it special,” said the Scot.

“I remember at the time how unbelievably difficult it was then and I had so much respect for the people who were winning then. This is a proper event and this is the first World Cup event I have won. That means a lot."

Hannah Snellgrove took silver in the ILCA 6 (formerly Laser Radial), and there were bronzes for Ellie Aldridge and Connor Bainbridge in the Formula Kite classes, set to make their Olympic debut in Paris.

There were five gold medals for rising British boxers at the Gee Bee Tournament in Finland.

Lewis Richardson, who fell narrowly short in his bid to qualify for Tokyo, took the gold medal by beating Estonia’s Maksim Ljubimov by unanimous points decision.

And on the back of his triumph at Spain’s Boxam Tournament, the next super heavyweight cab off the rank Delicious Orie stopped Antii Lehmusvirpi in the final to seal victory.

Sportsbeat 2022