The Event Horse Owners Association (EHOA) is continuing two initiatives designed to encourage owner-riders intending to event this year.

Thanks to generous sponsorship from Biotal, the association has been able to expand its training awards initiative following its huge popularity last year. This year the EHOA is offering 10 awards, worth £200 each.

The lucky winners will be able to use their training vouchers to book a series of lessons with top trainers on the EHOA trainers list. This list incorporates an impressive array of names including Ian Stark, Karen Dixon, Yogi Breisner, Ruth McMullen and Jennie Loriston-Clark among others.

The awards are open to EHOA members, who are owner-riders. Members should submit a CV (300 words) by 31 May, outlining their aims for this season and explaining how they would benefit from the awards.

Since many of its members are not riding full time, the EHOA is looking for focus and commitment and the ability to juggle equestrian and professional life. Emphasis is placed not necessarily on competition success, but on determination.

Annabel Brunner, EHOA spokesperson, told HHO: “Since many owner-riders are young riders, we feel that we are providing an opportunity for young, upcoming riders at grassroots level. The aim is to encourage these younger riders, and give them the chance to enjoy benefits that might otherwise be beyond their reach.”

The association is also organising training days through the season for owner riders. The last weekend in February will see two training days, ‘Are You Ready for the New Season?’

Jane Wallace will be taking the days in the east of England at Earlsway Farm, Suffolk on Saturday 28 February, while in the west, Leslie Law will be giving jumping instruction at his new yard in Worcestershire.

Looking ahead, there will be a follow-up training day to iron out start of season problems, and further into the season, days are planned with Pippa Funnell, William Fox-Pitt and Eric and Liz Winter.

  • For full details about the EHOA awards, contact Annabel Brunner (tel: 01223 872619). For further information about becoming a member of the EHOA, contact Margie Hall (tel: 01799 530247).