Suffolk Show 2013: Championship brings joy for Suffolk horse breeders John and Fiona Fleming

Suffolk Show 2013 Day One
Supreme Champion Heavy Horses
Eyke Samphire

Suffolk Show 2013 Day One Supreme Champion Heavy Horses Eyke Samphire - Credit: Archant

A year which had already brought some sadness today provided some joy for Suffolk horse breeders John and Fiona Fleming.

The couple, from Eyke, near Woodbridge, who are assisted by daughters Heather and Clare and son Peter, only had one foal born at their stud this year, with a second mare in foal, Eyke Amber, having died from cancer.

Amber’s last foal, Eyke Olympian, born in March last year, made a winning appearance at the Suffolk Show yesterday in the yearling class.

But top honours went to the family’s nine-year-old mare Eyke Samphire, which carried off both the female and overall championship titles.

The Flemings also won the filly class with their two-year-old Eyke Genesis and the mare with foal at foot class with the five year old Eyke Harvest.

The family currently have nine Suffolk horses, including their own stallion and a visiting stallion, and with yesterday’s champion Eyke Samphire now in foal for next year they are hopeful of further success to come.

Reserve spot in the overall championship went to Kilmannan Smart, a four-year-old stallion owned by Bill Ireland, from Drem, near North Berwick in Scotland, which is currently stabled with Roger Clark at Stoke-by-Nayland.

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Kilmannan Smart won the male championship ahead of Prof David Cadman’s Besthorpe Achilles, now eight years old, which is based at the Suffolk Punch Trust in Hollesley and has been breed champion at the Suffolk Show twice in the last three years.

The award for best gelding went to the six-year-old Eyke Sir Winston, bred by the Flemings and now owned by Glenn Cass, from Greenstead Green, near Halstead, with the five-year-old Whitton Hector, owned by Mr J Latham from Nettlestead, near Ipswich, taking reserve.

The duo also took the top two places in the senior gelding class which was the the most stongly contested of the day, with more than a dozen entries.

The junior gelding class was won by Mr Latham’s three-year-old Whitton Teazle.

The foal class was won by TGas Valley Hope’s Charm, sired by Eyke Viscount out of Holbeache Hope and owned by FA and CA Kinge and their daughter Amy, from Bunwell, near Norwich.