The Howden Way April Spotlight Award winner is announced

Evie Jordan has been chosen as April’s The Howden Way Spotlight Award winner for celebrating development of skills and knowledge over outcome and being a good ambassador for the sport. As part of her award, Evie wins a uvex exxential II riding helmet, courtesy of Zebra Products.

Evie rides her eight-year-old purebred grey Connemara gelding Cushlough Gonzo, aka Monty, who she has owned for four years.

Coach Victoria Baker nominated Evie for the April Spotlight Award on behalf of the North Area Academy. She said: “Evie came on a The Howden Way camp last year with her mum’s young horse as her own horse was out of action. The horse was tricky for her and gave her a hard time, but she really embraced it, knuckling down and trying her hardest despite what the horse threw at her. When she came the second time, I couldn’t believe the improvement in her. She’d really taken everything on board and despite being in the same group as a very experienced rider who could easily have intimidated her, if anything she did the opposite and rose to the challenge. I was really impressed. She has shown resilience, persistence and hard work.”

Laura Collett, who has the pleasure of selecting the winning candidate, said: “Despite being only 15, Evie has shown maturity in her ability to overcome the challenges that horses can throw at us, and still remain patient and forgiving. Not only that, but the fact that she has clearly absorbed everything that she has been taught, and gone home to work hard putting it into practice, shows her determination and keenness to learn and improve. Evie is the epitome of what The Howden Way academies are all about.”

Evie’s mother Hayley commented: “Evie was quite a nervous rider before we bought Monty as a green four-year-old, but they have both grown in confidence together and have a very special bond. She has worked so hard as he wasn’t the easiest pony when he was young, but she has always been so patient and dedicated with his training, and always puts his wellbeing first in everything they do.

“They have been competing at BE80 arena evening over the winter and competed at the British Eventing Arena Eventing Championships in February where they jumped a clear round with just a few time penalties. Evie has currently just begun her affiliated eventing journey competing at BE80 under 18s this year. Her aim is to hopefully qualify for Bramham BE80 championships next year, and compete in arena eventing BE90 next winter. Evie has also just started competing my young horse this year and aims to begin eventing her next year too.”

Evie added: “Monty loves to jump and be out on the cross-country course. He has given me so much confidence and I love being out eventing with him as well as hacking – his favourite place to go is the beach. He really is the kindest, most talented pony, and I feel so lucky to own him, even though he can be a bit cheeky at times! I’m shocked and over the moon to have won this award.”

Each month, coaches delivering The Howden Way Regional Academies are invited to nominate a member who has championed the core values of the Academies whether it be welfare, driving for inclusivity, creating camaraderie and supporting others, celebrating development of skills and knowledge over outcomes and developing true ambassadors for the sport. The winner is then selected by Olympic Gold Medallist, Laura Collett, from a shortlist of contenders who have been nominated as deserving.

For more information, visit here

Non-members can attend up to two of any of The Howden Way training academies. For more information on The Howden Way training, visit here. For those wishing to join, there is a 40% discount for new Pony Club and Riding Club members. For information on how to join, visit here

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