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Friday, August 31, 2007  •  20:16 GMT

JAM IS BRUCE'S LEADING LADY

American rider Bruce Davidson is, this year riding his homebred mare Jam at The Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials.

This year will be the 13th appearance at Burghley for Bruce who won the event 33 years ago in 1974 on a horse called Irish Cap. Then hosting the World Championships Bruce gained the title of World Champion, which he then retained four years later in 1978 in Lexington.

Jam is one of two grey mares taking part this year – although there are six mares in total on the start list. Jam is out of Toitay a Thoroughbred mare by Explode II. “Toitay was a brilliant mare. My wife hunted hounds from her for fourteen seasons and my son Buck point-to-pointed her,” said Bruce. Toitay was put to the ‘beautifully bred’ Thoroughbred Snar a stakes winner and Grand Prix show jumper. Jam, currently in 42nd place before the cross-country, also has a sister and a half sister who is competing at Intermediate level.

The highest placed mare at the moment is Enchanted in 14th place who is ridden by Australian rider Sammi McLeod, while British rider Sarah Cohen is in 26th place with The Wexford Lady. In 2004 The Irish bred mare was 8th at Badminton and gained another completion there this year.

Little Tiger who shares equal 42nd place with Jam, also has the claim to the title of ‘smallest horse’ in the competition. The 15hh grey mare by Thoroughbred sire Java Tiger and who was bred close to Burghley by Val Gingell, completed Badminton in May this year with Phoebe Buckley.

Just A Nightmare, by Just A Monarch the same sire as Andrew Hoy’s ride Master Monarch, sadly lived up to her name in the dressage, currently lying in 70th place and UN one of three competing at Burghley by Irish sire Cavalier, brings up the rear for American first time rider Jane Sleeper.

At the end of the competition the highest placed mare will be presented with a voucher, presented by Twemlows Hall Stud, to cover the cost of two embryo transfers.