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Life lessons: Show producer Jo Bates *H&H Plus*

The show producer on a legendary mare from her past, her obsession with organisation and her daughter’s calming words of wisdom

Jo is a leading show horse producer and dressage trainer based in Oxfordshire. She has stood champion at all major shows including Royal Windsor, the Royal International (RIHS) and Horse of the Year Show (HOYS), which she last won in 2019 with Yvonne Jacques’ ex-racehorse Grandeur.

My former riding horse Broadstone Dee was my horse of a lifetime. In our last year together in 2002 we were champion at Windsor, won the Winston Churchill supreme at the Royal International and then took the riding horse of the year title at Horse of the Year Show (HOYS).

I always respected her owner Liz Walkinshaw’s decision to retire her after HOYS, but I think she could have had a couple more seasons in her. She was an awesome horse and would have walked through fire for me. On big occasions she never once let me down and we were always on side with each other.