Livery yards and rescued horses were among those celebrated in new additions to this year’s British Horse Foundation awards. The ceremony, on 11 January, honoured outstanding contributions to the industry while raising funds for the foundation.
The SEIB inspirational award went to Richard Ramsay, who “has been an inspiration and support for so many and at the forefront of equestrian sport for decades”.Mr Ramsay evented to top level but has had huge success breeding and producing show horses with his wife Marjorie — they twice had five of the top nine hacks at Horse of the Year Show where he was first to win the riding horse title.He was described by goddaughter Hannah Horton as “a magician on a horse” who has inspired countless people to achieve their potential.
The Stallion AI Services Meritoire lifetime achievement in breeding award went to Tessa Clarke, who is retiring after 25 seasons at West Kington Stud.
Ms Clarke, who last year took the unsung hero award at the ceremony, was honoured for her huge amounts of work promoting and furthering British breeding, “getting British genetics all over the world” and supporting rare native breeds.
“Some breeders don’t realise what she’s done to promote British breeding,” said Stallion AI Services’ Tullis Matson. “I can’t think of anyone who deserves this more.”
The Horse & Hound outstanding mare award went to Stainmore Scotch Rose, one of the most prolific pure-bred Cleveland Bay broodmares. Her progeny contribute to the future of the breed at home and abroad; stallion Stainmore Wolfhound is active in the US and Stainmore Scotch On The Rocks stands at stud in Wales, while broodmare London Principal is at stud in England, having produced 28 progeny.
The new SEIB livery yard awards went to Court Bank Farm, Staffordshire, and Church House Farm, Essex, in the DIY and full categories respectively.
Wellington Riding in Hampshire was named best riding school and Cotswold RDA topped the RDA riding school category.
SEIB’s Nicolina Mackenzie said: “It was a pleasure to see so many truly outstanding businesses and this has given us an opportunity to celebrate the service offered by livery yards and riding schools in the UK.”
The Haddon Training British grooms awards, presented to “the important people who form the core of our industry”, went to Amy McCormack, Chloe Fry, Emma Hill, Isobel Leader and Carol Andrews.
The Richard Matson memorial trophy, to the highest-placed British-bred horse at Burghley Horse Trials last year, went to Ashton and Robert Hawker’s Charles RR, bred by Peter Teasdale.
The Anglo European Studbook (AES) award for a breeding operation that showcases quality AES-registered sport horses, went to Mark Evans of Castell Sport Horses.
The British Hanoverian Horse Society awards, for breeders of the horses who gained the highest points in FEI competition last year, went to dressage horse Duke Of Britain, eventer Superstition II and showjumper MFS W Diva Rosa, bred by Sarah and Tony Pidgley, Eva Meier and Caroline Ironside respectively.
ILPH Windy, rehomed by Jackie Robertson, took the new World Horse Welfare “unbreakable bond” award, which celebrates “the special connection between a rehomed horse and its owner”.
The Tomlinson Equine award, for the highest-placed British-bred mare at the 2019 European Championships, went to Midnight, bred by Reg and Cassie Passmore, and the British Equestrian Federation award, for the highest-placed rider making his or her debut at the Europeans, went to Midnight’s rider Georgia Wilson.
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