Local horse rider Cara Shardlow has qualified two horses to compete in the National Winter Championships, which take place from Wednesday to Sunday next week (April 15-19).
Cara, of Beckside Livery Stables, entered Detonator II and Rhythmic Times in five classes.
After qualifying for the nationals for the first time at last year’s winter regionals, the pressure was on to do the same this time.
The first class was on Detonator the medium open freestyle where the pair gained 3rd place with 69%, just missing out on a national ticket.
“This was my third third place at the last few regionals, I had never finished any higher which was rather frustrating,” she said.
“I was first on at 8am on the Tuesday with Detonator in the advanced medium restricted class, it’s not great being first on but he behaved very well and we gained a huge 70% and after a nerve wrecking wait we held our lead through out the class to win and gain my first regional title and a nationals ticket.
“I’m am so thrilled to have finally achieved this.
“Rhythmic Times also put in a lovely test in the same class but a mistake at the end dropped him down to 6th place but with a personal best percentage for him at a regional final so was very pleased.”
The final class was the advanced medium freestyle which was a large, competitive class and Cara was just aiming for a top ten placing.
But to her amazement, they pulled off a mistake-free test and 72.61%, finishing in 4th place above some British team members. That percentage was high enough to have been awarded a wild card for this class as well.
Both horses now head to the winter championships at Hartpury Glos, as Rhythmic Times had qualified back in August last year for the Petplan finals at the same championships.
“I’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who has helped me and Wilf Nobles for their continued support,” Cara added.