As we continue to celebrate the introduction of vet fees and horse trailer insurance at Harry Hall, we hear from One Club members of all ages to hear what drives them, their dreams and aspirations.
Dakota’s mum Ann kindly prepared this blog for us, it’s great to hear that One Club members of all ages enjoy getting out and about with their horses and we love hearing how committed Harry Hall One Club members are to the sport we all know and love.
Horse riding from the age of three:
Hi I’m Ann, mum of Dakota, who is nine years old, loves horse riding and lives in Southend on Sea in Essex. She started riding at our local riding school, Shopland Hall Equestrian Centre when she was three years old after getting a riding lesson for her third birthday. She had weekly lessons here until the age of seven when we were lucky enough to find her a pony called Owen who we were able to have on full loan.
The perfect first pony:
Owen is now 18 years old and is a Welsh Section A. In our first year of having Owen, we went to all of our local Riding Club competitions and where they did quite well in showing and show jumping but soon discovered their true love was dressage. A couple of months later, they attended the Dressage Trailblazers Championships and came a very respectable 11th place. Since then we have concentrated on dressage and a turning point was when Dakota won the intro and prelim junior winter championship at one of our local venues and became our local Riding Club overall junior points champion.
Where is Dakota now:
She has been competing regularly in My Quest competitions at intro and prelim level and has been attending BRC dressage qualifiers. She was selected to represent the BD Eastern team at the youth inter-regionals and finished 11th out of 28 under 12 riders, with her team finishing 9th out of 43 teams. It was a very proud moment for us seeing her do so well against the older riders.
To help Dakota progress through the levels, in April we bought a 12-year-old Welsh section B called Lucas. Three months after owning Lucas they attended their first competition and scored over 72% in an intro class.
What the future holds:
Dakota frequently states that she aspires to be the next Charlotte Dujardin! On a more realistic and short-term note, she hopes to reach the My Quest finals this year with Owen, to place at Trailblazers and we are hoping to affiliate both ponies with British Dressage, the aim being to attend an area festival in the not too distant future.
She is extremely dedicated and works very hard to perfect her dressage learning a lot after every competition. But most importantly she loves her ponies and that’s really all that matters.