- Sophie Wells MBE wins her second gold medal of the Games in the Grade V Individual Freestyle
- The GBR vaulting team finish eighth in the final of the team competition
Sophie Wells MBE (Nottinghamshire) has won her second gold medal in the Grade V Individual Freestyle, taking her to a grand total of 12 individual gold medals for Great Britain at a senior championships.
On board Charlotte Hogg’s C Fatal Attraction, the combination produced a magnificent performance and scored a well-worthy mark of 80.755% to take the title.
Speaking after her test, a delighted Sophie said; “He was a little bit tense today and on edge but he’s come out this week and given me everything. I was a little bit stressed last night as I thought it may be too difficult and we have only done it once at Hartpury but he’s come out today made me very proud.
“When you miss out on an Individual Gold [WEG 2014] after training everyday it’s hard, but to achieve this after a big gap like I’ve had is amazing; that’s why Rio [Olympic Games 2016] was so special because I missed out on the gold in London [Olympic Games 2012] too.”
Commenting on Great Britain’s success, she added; “The British team are amazing and it’s so hard to get on the team and selection is a massive hurdle that you have to overcome. We have a lot of good riders with a lot of horse power and we’re seeing that more across the world – yesterday [the team competition] proved that. The standard of the riders, the training and the horses is amazing for the sport and it makes proud to be a part of it - but that means you have to fight.”
The afternoon saw Great Britain’s Natasha Baker MBE (Middlesex) and Erin Orford (Buckinghamshire) compete in the Grade III class. First to go was Erin on-board, Annabel Whittet’s Dior who came in to compete today’s test following an earlier withdrawal. Erin produced a lovely test with Pimms to finish on a score of 71.073%.
Erin said: “I was so pleased with her today, she felt amazing. She’s grown in confidence this week and today she went in there and said ‘OK I’m ready, what do you want me to do’. I had a new freestyle music made for here and a technical issue meant we didn’t get to ride to it which was a massive shame. To finish within 0.8% of bronze and 2% of silver despite this, just proves her quality and how close we are to the best in the world.”
Natasha soon followed with Mount St John Diva Dannebrog, owned by The Mount St John Stud but unfortunately, Natasha was unseated shortly after the beginning of the test, eliminating her from the competition.
After leaving the arena Natasha said; “My ego is bruised and my bum is bruised but I feel fine and at least I hit the centre line! I don’t know what got into her today but it was out of character for her. We untacked her and cooled her down and we’re going to go and sit back on and see how she feels and give her some confidence back.”
Great Britain’s vaulting team finished in eighth place overall after the final freestyle of the team competition in a packed indoor arena..
The team, made up of representatives from the English Vaulting Squad, improved on their freestyle from the first round and were rewarded with a score of 7.255 which left them with a final overall total of 6.837 points.
Team member, Ricky Davies said; “We’re all really pleased. We felt that was much better than the first round. We all relaxed and got into the routine and performed it well. The atmosphere was louder today but we had a lot of time to relax before we went in and I think we did really well; the crowd really showed their appreciation in there.”
Lunger Julie Newell added; “I am so proud of them. This has been three and half years of real hard work and I am very, very pleased with how we performed.”
Amanda Derbyshire’s Luibanta BH passed today’s final jumping Horse Inspection and the duo now move forward to tomorrow’s Individual Final, and will be the final British athlete to be in action in Tryon.
The final is split into two parts and will start with the first round at 13.45 BST with Amanda and Luibanta the 11th combination to go in the order. The top 12 combinations from the first round will then progress to the second round where the medals are decided. The second round will get underway at 12.35 BST. Both rounds will be available to view live on the BBC Red Button.
Equestrian Team GBR is supported by the UK Sport National Lottery funded World Class Programme; the British teams are very grateful to the support they receive from the British Equestrian Federation Fund and official partners Dodson and Horrell, Equi-Trek, FALPRO England, Musto, NAF and Point Two.
Full results from Tryon can be found online at: https://tryon2018.com/officialresults