Wymeswold show jumpers cap season with prestigious wins

Tabitha Kyle on her way to victory in Liverpool EMN-191231-141226002
Tabitha Kyle on her way to victory in Liverpool EMN-191231-141226002
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Young show jumper Tabitha Kyle is making great strides towards following fellow villager Holly Smith into the top echelons of their sport.

Wymeswold rider Holly is in a strong position to contend for a place in the Great Britain squad for the Olympics later this year with Hearts Destiny.

Holly Gillott could compete in the show jumping arena in Tokyo this sumer EMN-191231-141240002

Holly Gillott could compete in the show jumping arena in Tokyo this sumer EMN-191231-141240002

She capped a stunning season in fine style when she was named leading rider at the London International Horse Show at Olympia, shortly before Christmas.

Tabitha is still a good few years away from the senior ranks, but has become one of the leading junior riders in the country at the tender age of 12.

She, too, maintained her prolific form right up to the end of 2019 at TheraPlate UK Liverpool International Horse Show on Monday.

Tabitha, who is based just the other side of Wymeswold to Holly, won the Wicks Group 128cm Championship at M&S Bank Arena, two weeks after being pipped to victory in a play-off at Olympia.

The daughter of former international eventers Mark and Tanya Kyle, Tabitha has tasted victory at major shows all over the country, her latest triumph coming on board 19-year-old pony Living the Dream.

Five combinations from 19 starters made the jump-off, and she produced an impressive display under pressure, clocking 29.52 seconds to take the win.

“It’s a dream come true,” said Tabitha, who also starred for the British children’s team this year.

“I have been riding this pony for about 20 months now, and it felt like it was a jump-off for me today.

“The course really suited my pony, and it is great to win here again. I am very happy.”

Holly had an Olympia to remember, opening the show with a win and finishing it under the spotlight as leading rider.

Every one of her horses had top placings and she had already confirmed her position as leading rider before coming third in the final grand prix.

Riding Hearts Destiny, she was part of the four-rider British squad which won bronze at the FEI European Showjumping Championships in August.

The result secured Britain’s show jumping place at the Tokyo Olympics.