Oaklands College Riding for the Disabled (RDA) team stormed their way to victory at RDA’s Ruby Anniversary National Championships in Gloucester at the weekend.
In an outstanding performance, seven Oaklands College riders managed to win six first places and four second places between them, competing against 440 other riders from across England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
The Oaklands College team took part in several classes, including dressage and obstacle courses, and their performance was of such a high standard that even HRH The Princess Royal praised the team for their accomplishments.
As part of the RDA’s 40th Birthday celebrations, celebrities of the horse world were on hand to give out prizes and admire winners’ achievements, including Clare Balding, TV presenter and sports journalist, and Lee Pearson, CBE, Paralympic triple Gold medallist at the last 4 Olympic Games.
Sarah Moreland, Senior Advanced Skills Practitioner, Oaklands College, commented: “Despite the heat, all of the riders and horses worked hard to secure their personal best scores. The number of comments we received about how smart and professional our team looked was very rewarding. To have the HRH Princess Anne visit us was a real highlight.”
Notable performances from the Oaklands College team included:
Mary Lou Amos who won first prize in the walk, trot freestyle on Lara, an Ardennes
Adam Gorman won second place in the Learning Difficulties walk, trot and canter class, when he had only learnt to ride 11 months ago
Daniel Charlesworth won the Open walk test against 30 other riders riding the much admired Tonto.
The National Championships is RDA’s flagship event bringing together hundreds of competitors of all abilities. In the past it has proved a springboard for the Paralympics and many of the current Team GB have previously competed at The Championships.