Tuesday, 11 March 2014

BUCS A team final cup match (Preparing for Varsity 2014)

After a successful year competing in the BUCS league, De Montfort A team were to ride in their last ever BUCS cup match of the season at Nottingham Trent University. The team have been competing solidly all year together and training every week in both dressage and show jumping disciplines with yard proprietor and dressage coach, Verity Saul of Witham Villa who has been getting them all into shape for the up and coming Varsity match against Leicester University. The final cup match was the last chance for the girls to have a go at riding the BUCS competition style before Varsity so the pressure was on to ensure a top performance from all riders.

Gemma Elliott A team rider (2nd year)
The standard of riding in this years A team league is higher than ever, with Sheffield, Nottingham, Nottingham Trent and De Montfort all aiming to secure, not just team wins, but individual placings which all contribute towards BUCS league points.

The team rode extremely well with lots of high scores for both dressage and show jumping with a wide variety of very challenging horses used for the day in order to test the riders to the absolute max. The fences were set at 90cm with a demanding show jumping course layout to ensure the competition bar was raised for the closing of the BUCS league. With a brilliant display shown by De Montfort the surprise of the day came from new rider, Georgia Aston who was placed 7th overall for the day, a fantastic personal achievement and result for the club. Georgia was extremely pleased with the result and feels her riding has really benefited from being a part of the University club.

"As the only fresher rider on the A team this year, I initially felt a little apprehensive about the challenging format of the BUCS competitions. However, I was supported every step of the way by my team and my riding has gone from strength the strength. Gaining an individual placing in our final league competition is something I would never have thought I'd have achieved at the start of the year, which goes to show that hard work and commitment really does pay off! Joining a team is the best thing I could have done as a first year, as well as achieving personal sporting goals, I have joined a network of wonderful people along the way which has made the transition to university life and enjoyable one."

Georgia Aston A team rider (1st year)

The BUCS league competitions are aimed at a wide variety of riders; those who have not competed who get the opportunity to join a team and experience the competitive world, rider's who want to challenge their skills further and achieve goals on a variety of horses and for those who may have lost confidence who want to get back into competing the BUCS matches are a fantastic way to experience a totally new world of equine competition.

Jenny Walker, Chair of the club is in her final year of riding for the equestrian team and has been a part of developing and expanding upon the positive work that has been put in place by every committee and team rider.

"Riding in BUCS has been the best experience throughout my time at De Montfort University. I have been fortunate enough to ride as part of the A team for three whole years and have loved every second of it! It has brought up many challenges for me, including competing against some of the best riders in the country, but I feel it has improved my versatility as a rider and given me a lot more confidence. The best part about it has to be the fact it is competed as a team, as generally in the equestrian world we are always competing individually. Having those three other riders by your side to praise and also push you is what makes BUCS a thoroughly enjoyable experience and I am extremely pleased to be a part of the rising success and journey to get equestrian sport bigger and better."

Jenny Walker A team captain (3rd year)

Both A and B team have been training very hard the last few weeks, not just in the saddle but also by par taking in local Pilates sessions ran by Physiotherapist, Sara Smith, that are especially designed for equine activity to improve balance, co-ordination and position whilst riding. The date has been set for 19th of March when both teams will head to Leicester University's yard in South Leicestershire to compete in the biggest match of the year. The B team and some intermediates will be setting off to compete at Sutton Bonnington Riding Club on Wednesday 12th of March to take part in some friendly show jumping all part of the preparations for Varsity 2014!

A final well done to De Montfort A team on their successful year competing and all the B team rider's for keeping up all their hard work training, which will hopefully see them return to campus with some red Varsity ribbons next week...

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Clare Wilyman A team rider (2nd year)

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