An update from our sponsored riders.
As we write this blog, we’re just 10 days away from the start of the 2023 British Eventing season, and spring is just around the corner. As the mud recedes, the days get longer, and the weather warms up our sponsored riders will be back out competing once more. We can’t wait to see how they get on, and we’re delighted to be introducing you to three new sponsored riders this year – QC Sportshorses, Sophie Hall and Maddie Maher. While we wait for the new eventing season to begin, we’ve checked in with our sponsored riders to see how their preparations are going… let’s find out how they are doing.
Fred Powell Eventing
Fred’s 2022 season ended early due to him having a nasty fall at Sapey Horse Trials and landing on his head. As Fred himself says, the saying “where there is no sense, there’s no feeling” sadly isn’t correct and it not only hurt a lot, but also led to an enforced medical suspension from British Eventing. But onwards and upwards – Fred has spent the winter recovering, training and getting ready for a spectacular 2023 season – watch this space!
Sarah, who’s known as Eventing Ozzy on Instagram and Facebook, has spent the winter partnering with her gorgeous horse Ozzy to tackle hunt rides, arena eventing and even a British
Showjumping camp at Forest Edge Arena to get ready for the eventing season ahead. Poor Ozzy had to contend with a bout of colic earlier in the winter, but thankfully with a vet visit and some TLC he was back to his usual self. Most recently Sarah had a mixed day at an arena eventing competition recently, taking a horrible tumble in the 90cm but getting back on board to have a storming round in the 100cm to qualify for the arena eventing championships. Good luck Sarah!
Emily Grace Eventing
Leicestershire-based Emily Grace is the stable jockey for Preci Spark Event Horses, and she has an exciting season ahead of her with 11 horses to campaign. She’s been busy preparing for the season ahead with showjumping at Vale View and cross-country schooling. Emily was also lucky to be selected as a Wesko Foundation’s Young Eventers Pathway for 2023 and spent two days training at Aston-le-Walls with Dickie Waygood and Pippa Funnell. Emily currently has three entries at Oasby Horse Trials on the 9th of March and we can’t wait to see how she gets on!
International 4* event rider Emma Carmichael’s 2022 season came to a close with Leo Santos at in the 3* long format at Le Lion d’Angers in France so we can’t wait to see how this partnership gets on in 2022. Emma has enjoyed some of the winter in the hunting field and preparing her string for the new competition season, but sadly was injured in January. We know Emma will be on form and right up there on return, so we hope her recovery is going well and we’re looking forward to catching up with her soon.
QC Sportshorses is the home of showjumping riders Jonathan Dixon and Laura Ritchie Bland, and the yard has had an excellent start to the year. As well as producing the next generation of sports horses, they’ve been in great form with their spring of showjumpers, with Denise Ardenica winning the 1.30m and the 1.35m at the Aintree Elite Show last week under Jonathan.
Sophie is a 26-year-old amateur event and dressage rider based in Shropshire, and she also works full time in financial services marketing in London – superwoman! Sophie made a commitment to focus on dressage over the winter (as she says, if you can’t get a quality canter and nail the scales of training, how can you expect a horse to jump well at an event?!) She decided to compete her horse Freddie (Helvick HSH Hero) at medium this winter, even though he’d only tried prelim to date. Sophie and Freddie headed to Kings Equestrian this week and strutted their stuff in the Elementary and Medium classes. We’re delighted to report that they came away with a very respectable second place and a fourth place. Here’s hoping for similar successes when they start their 2023 BE campaign in a few weeks!
Say a big hello to Maddie Maher! Maddie is a rider, equestrian model and content creator, and we love seeing her behind the scenes and in the saddle videos! Maddie competes in dressage, showjumping and eventing so we should have lots of exciting updates to share with you.