Danielle Everitt had been competing on the Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) qualifying circuit for 12 years before she won her first golden ticket to the championship final this summer on her Welsh section D stallion Monahawk Masterpiece (Bond).
The bay 11-year-old has been a big winner for Welsh cob enthusiast Danielle since she bought him as a seven years ago.
But no one could have predicted the trouble that would follow during the duo’s HOYS run-up.
After qualifying at the Northleach Welsh Pony and Cob Society Show back in July, Danielle decided to take Bond to Denbigh and Flint Show at the end of August for a pre-HOYS outing.
“We’d only done three shows this year so I thought it would be a good show to attend,” explains Danielle. “We arranged transport with a friend and left home at 3.30am. We had a good journey and all was well during the warm-up.
“Unfortunately, during the go-round, I attempted to pass a horse that was rather unsettled. Bond slipped as we tried to pass. He came down, falling to the ground and landing on top of me.
“After a wait for the paramedics, I was escorted from the ring. There was some confusion about how I was to get to a hospital as the paramedics were required to stay on the showground. Thankfully, they took me to a local hospital and had my ankle X-rayed, which confirmed that it was broken.”
After the news Danielle was then required to get a taxi to a bigger hospital at a few miles away.
“The ambulance would have been hours so I got a taxi and made my way to the A&E department,” continues Danielle. “Doctors tried re-set the ankle manually but were unsuccessful. It was decided an operation was needed and as they were too busy, I returned home and then was admitted to a different hospital the following day. After six days there, I was finally allowed to go home.”
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A great achievement for this lovely young stallion
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With HOYS only weeks away, Danielle’s niece Beth, aged 14, took on the day-to-day care of Bond, hacking him out and maintaining his fitness.
“Another friend, Annah Chester, is helping me with schooling and will also step in on the big day if it’s decided that I cannot ride,” says Danielle.
“My cast doesn’t come off until 27 September, which is just four days before the big event. I am praying that I will make it but I also know that my amazing team will get him there if not.
“My parents have also been a great support, taking me backwards and forwards to our local TheraPlate where I have 50-minute sessions to help increase the speed of healing.
“Even if I don’t get to ride in that ring this year I am determined to get there again. However this year I’m going to enjoy the day, no matter what.”