The British Eventing Support Trust (BEST), a charity which aims to support British Eventing members and maintain safety standards in the sport, has announced former Olympic eventer and European Eventing Champion Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal as its President.
BEST was founded in 2021 and launched at Bicton Horse Trials in September of the same year. The trust, which is a registered charity, was created to provide financial and practical support for British Eventing members recovering from an accident or during mental health challenges. BEST also works to promote, research, develop and implement initiatives that will maintain the safety of the sport and the welfare of riders. Eventing is a high-risk sport and the creation of a charity focused on looking after riders with a British Eventing membership in their time of need is vital.
The Princess Royal has an extremely accomplished career as an equestrian, competing at the highest level in eventing as well enjoying wins as a jockey on the flat and over fences. In 1971 she won the individual gold medal at the European Eventing Championships at Burghley and followed this with team and individual silver medals at the European Eventing Championships in Luhmühlen in 1975. The Princess Royal became the first member of the British royal family to compete in the Olympics when she took part in the Montreal Games in 1976.
BEST has attracted considerable support from British Eventing members, with Laura Collett MBE, William Fox-Pitt, Tom Jackson and The Princess Royal’s daughter Zara Tindall among its ambassadors. Former event rider Nicola Wilson, who sustained a serious injury in a cross-country fall at Badminton Horse Trials 2022, is the charity’s patron alongside her husband Alastair and has benefitted from its support during her recovery.
The BEST board of trustees, which is chaired by five-time Olympian Ian Stark OBE, includes Lisa Hancock, Lexi Hambro, Ian Barratt, Mark Sartori, Jane Holderness-Roddam, Rosie Williams OBE and associate trustee Madeleine Lloyd Webber, and is committed to increasing the profile of the charity and raising the funds to help as many British Eventing members as possible.
Ian Stark OBE commented on how the Princess Royal’s involvement will impact their work: “We are thrilled to have such a high-profile legend of the equestrian and eventing world on board. The Princess Royal is incredibly dedicated to the charities she supports, and we know that she will work tirelessly to help raise awareness of our aims and help further our cause.”
To learn more about BEST, please visit: https://besupporttrust.org.uk
To donate to BEST and help the charity continue its vital work, please visit: https://www.justgiving.com/besupporttrust
The 2023 British Eventing Support Trust Winter Ball will take place on Saturday 18th November at The Savoy Hotel, London. Tickets/Tables are available by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org . The British Equestrian Support Trust are also keen to hear from any organisations or individuals that may wish to support the trust and the tremendous work they do.