‘Cross country is a combination of speed, endurance and bravery’
will go in reverse order making the pressure tough at the top! The combination with the lowest finishing score wins overall.”
This year Ros is pregnant with her first baby, due in July, so she will be there in a different role – watching her horses compete rather than riding them.
“I know I will be itching to get going again though! The plan is to get back to give Olympic selection a go next year.”
Last year, she won a place at the World Equestrian Games in America where she won both the team and individual gold medals on her horse Allstar B.
“We spend years gearing up for a big win, but you can’t plan for it, and the whole experience was surreal and amazing,” she says.
Training for major events is hugely demanding – and, running her own stables in Hallington means that there are many strands to the preparation and work.
“Our season runs from March to October and during this time life is pretty full-on. Unlike other sports we have numerous athletes to look after, because whilst we might be preparing our top horses for their major events or championships, we are also trying to bring on the younger horses for the future.
“A professional rider will train up to 15 horses a day, and a top horse will do fitness work every four days, with more specialised training for the different phases in between.”
The whole weekend at Houghton is a celebration of all things equestrian and as well as international competition, there is entertainment, shopping at the 70 or so trade stands, food and drink, children’s circus workshops and, running alongside the international events, a variety of other riding competitions in three other arenas.
The Saracen Horse Feeds Houghton International is on May 23 – 26. For tickets and more information see musketeer.co.uk
Competitors at the Houghton International Horse Trials