‘Her enthusiasm for life and showing knew no bounds’: tributes paid to much-loved showing stalwart

The showing world has paid tribute to one of its best loved and respected supporters.

Ghita Jago passed away peacefully in hospital this month, surrounded by six of her eight children, aged 95.

A matriarch of the showing community, she loved looking after the scores of children who competed for her over the years — many of whom have gone on to enjoy hugely successful equestrian careers of their own.

Tiny Clapham, Chloe Chubb, Nicola Baldwin, Louisa Gordon Lennox, Sam Roberts, Joseph Thurston and Shelly Dixon are just some of the riders who wore her colours over the years.

Mrs Jago’s first taste of a major showing championship came when her 13.2hh Scrace Of Oakley, produced by Pat Wood, finished second at the Royal International at Wembley.

She and her daughter, Penny Carvosso, formed a fantastic partnership to produce ponies from their Sussex base and won numerous titles at the Royal International, Royal Windsor and Horse of the Year Show to name a few.

They were particularly successful in the 12.2hh classes at the Royal International, including winning three years on the bounce with three different ponies — Courtway Actress, Cusop Junior and Chinook Happy Talk.

Knight Errant, Rotherwood Peep O’Day, Cusop Crystal Clear, Paxford Bright and Breezy were among Mrs Jago’s other great winners.

Mrs Jago remained active and totally involved in the sport until the end, remaining in charge of feeding the ponies and continuing to attend shows until three weeks before she died.

H&H columnist Stuart Hollings is one of many to pay tribute.

Her enthusiasm for life and showing knew no bounds,” he said. “She was an inspiration to us all and will be sadly missed on the circuit.”

A spokesman for the National Pony Society added that Mrs Jago will be “sorely missed”.

“Mrs Jago was a great supporter of the show pony and owned many beautiful ponies over the years,” he said.

“She had huge success at the highest level with numerous ponies, but her enthusiasm for seeing them perform well in the ring never faltered.

“Many young riders have been proud to be known as ‘Jago jockeys’ and all benefitted from Mrs Jago’s expert advice and encouragement.

“The last show she attended was NPS Area 20 on the 23rd June, where she was delighted to see her two-year-old filly take the championship.

“Mrs Jago will be sorely missed in the pony world and our condolences are sent to her family.”

A private family funeral will be held this month and a celebration of her life is set to be held after Horse of the Year Show for all her friends in the equine world.

A further obituary to Mrs Jago will be printed in this week’s issue of Horse & Hound magazine, on sale Thursday, 25 July