Bubby Upton

Bubby Upton is a British event rider who has won medals at under-21 championships and has started to impress at senior level.

Bicton Horse Trials cross-country: Bubby Upton and Cola III

Bubby Upton and Cola at Bicton in June 2021.

Bubby first rode on a British team at the 2014 pony European Championships, where she took team and individual silver on Alfie.

She then contested two junior European Championships on Eros DHI, taking team bronze at the first in 2016 and individual gold and team silver at the second a year later.

Bubby rode at the young rider Europeans in 2018 and 2019 on Cola and came home with individual silver and team gold in the second year.

In 2021, Bubby won the under-25 CCI4*-L at Bicton Horse Trials on Cannavaro.

Bubby Upton and Cannavaro win the under-25 CCI4*-L at Bicton in June 2021.

Bubby Upton and Cannavaro win the under-25 CCI4*-L at Bicton in June 2021.

“It feels good finally to be a British champion,” said Bubby after her victory – she reckoned she had held the lead six times in under-age championships, without ever winning one. “They always ended up pulling it out the bag at the pony, junior or young rider Europeans so I didn’t mind. But there’s no under-25 Europeans, so it’s nice actually to seal the deal.

“Cannavaro really deserves it. He’s got a heart of pure gold and he showed it all week, so I’m delighted for him.”

After her Bicton win, Bubby was long-listed for the senior European Championships with both Cannavaro and Cola, but was unable to fight for a place when she contracted Covid and then broke her back.

She made her comeback in the autumn by contesting her first five-star at Pau Horse Trials, with both Cannavaro and Cola. She retired Cannavaro on the cross-country, but finished 12th on Cola.

Is Bubby at university?

Yes, Bubby is studying sports management at Edinburgh University.

“I hope my degree will help if I event as a career,” said Bubby in an interview in 2019. “It’ll help me to make financial sense out of this and make it a successful business.

“I’ve always juggled education with riding as I was away at Stowe School in Buckinghamshire and commuted back and forth at the weekend and Mum would drive the horses to school.

“We are based just outside Newmarket, which is half an hour from Stansted and the most regular flights to Edinburgh are from Stansted. That makes it affordable and do-able — if it wasn’t for that, I wouldn’t have been allowed to apply to Edinburgh.”

What is Bubby Upton’s real name?

Bubby’s real name is Isabelle.

What age is Bubby?

Bubby’s date of birth is 25 January 1999.

Has Bubby Upton had a riding accident?

Bubby broke eight vertebrae and her collarbone when she fell from a youngster while cross-country schooling at home in early August 2021. She returned to competition in September and went on to complete her first five-star at Pau that October, finishing 12th on Cola III.

Where is Bubby based?

Bubby is based at a yard at her parents Rachel and Hugo’s home near Newmarket.

Has Bubby Upton ridden at Badminton Horse Trials?

Yes. She made her Badminton debut in 2022, finishing 36th on Cola. The pair were on track to come home clear and close to the time across country, but had a heart-breaking run-out at the final fence.