Wealth of expertise on offer at British Eventing Talent Pathway camp

British Eventing’s Tier 1 and Young Rider Talent Academy training camp held at The National Training Centre, Hothorpe (17th-18th February), was deemed ‘the first of its kind’ due to the calibre of coaches and top-class support sessions delivered to the riders.

Aimed at Tier 1 athletes and Young Riders on Tier 2 and Tier 3, the camp saw coaches Andrew Fletcher, Kylie Roddy, Tina Cook and Phillip Surl give flatwork and jumping sessions over two days.

The riders then benefitted from additional support sessions with vet Sam Offord, saddle fitter Ruth Wyatt, Strength & Conditioning coach Neil Lewis and Sport Psychologist Sally McGinn.

The Talent Pathway is supported by Sport England, The Howden Way, the Worshipful Company of Saddlers and provides riders with pre-season training as well as training during the season ahead of key events along with on-event support at targeted events.

Justine Parker, British Eventing’s Head of Training, said of the two-day camp: “The pathway camp was a hive of activity, with four world-class coaches operating concurrently across the disciplines in addition to a host of wrap-around support sessions including a saddle-fitting check, vet support and strength and conditioning and sport psychology sessions. This weekend was the first of its kind – to be able to offer our athletes and horses this calibre of camp to help prepare them for the start of the season is fantastic.”

Rider Jemima Stratton commented: “Everything was very positive. It was really well organised and I found all the sessions very useful. I did the jumping sessions with Philip Surl which were really useful as I don’t like jumping big tracks at home on my own just in case something goes wrong. The sessions with Tina Cook were amazing and I took so much away from them. I tried to squeeze in as much as I could and made the most of all the opportunities. I feel like I could go out now at the start of the season and be pretty confident that most things are ready to go.”

Rider Barnie Brotherton said: “I took my two most competitive horses and had a flat session each day with Kylie Roddy where we worked on the half-passes and changes, and making it easier for the horse by fixing my own weaknesses. I like how the flat sessions are one-on-one as you get more out of them, but then the jumping is in a group which gives the horses a rest and means you can watch the other riders and learn from them, too.”

Coach Tina Cook said: “It’s a wonderful facility at Hothorpe that offers riders a fabulous opportunity to school and jump their horses on beautiful surfaces. I took dressage sessions and jumping sessions over the simulated fences working on cross-country lines. With there being four coaches, it was great for the riders as they could choose what they wanted to work on over the two days. There were some lovely young horses with talented riders. It’s great to help riders improve their knowledge and training skills ahead of the season. I really enjoy helping young riders and passing on my knowledge and experience.”

To find out more about the Talent Academies, click here

Photography courtesy of Hannah Cole Photography

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