Heading to HOYS: jockey gets first HOYS ticket after losing pony of a lifetime earlier this year

The 2018 show season didn’t start out as it will end for one rider, who will be making her debut at the Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) next week.

In January, Rebecca Orr lost her pony of a lifetime, the Welsh section B gelding Anri Romance (Thomas). After taking Rebecca into county level showing and giving her the first taste of show ring success — including taking the coveted novice mountain and moorland title at Cheshire County Show in 2013 — Thomas was sadly struck down with laminitis.

Rebecca’s good friend Ashleigh Jones said that this meant Thomas was unable to continue his season and was consequently retired temporarily from showing.

“After a long battle, Rebecca made the heartbreaking decision to part with him at the start of this year which left her wanting to no longer compete,” said Ashleigh. “She was ready to give up as he left a huge gap in her life.

“However, she is so determined and works so hard that she persevered with her other section B ride, Julia Owen’s Anri Mr Percy, who Rebecca has had for the past three seasons, taking him from a novice right through the open ranks.”

Rebecca has shown ‘Percy’ since she broke him in 2015 and some of their career highlights including landing the novice championship at the National Welsh Championships in 2015.

This term the pair qualified for the Royal International on their first attempt and in August at Denbigh and Flint Show dreams were made when the pair were called top of huge Welsh section B Horse of the Year Show qualifier, giving both pony and rider their first Birmingham pass.

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Ashleigh continued: “The bond Rebecca has developed with Percy throughout the season is amazing and to see her hard work pay off has brought so much enjoyment back to her. Rebecca puts in so much hard work into her ponies. This  achievement is so well deserved and we are very proud of them both.”

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