British Vaulting Championships 2019

Congratulations to our para vaulter, Lizzie Bennett, who competed at the British Equestrian Vaulting (BEV) Championships last weekend at Bishop Burton College. She was representing not only RDA but also Contessa Vaulting Group, where she coaches both able-bodied and para vaulters. She had entered the sole Para class offered at this level: Pre-Novice Canter/Walk.
Freestyle moves demonstrating balance/strength
Lizzie qualified for the event in joint-top position nationally with the maximum qualification score by winning two competitions earlier in the year: a national competition at Talygarn Equestrian Centre (Wales), and the English Championships in Rugby.

She was competing on Briardale Lothario (aka Rio), an eleven-year-old skewbald gelding who is owned by Reivers Vaulting Group from Scotland, lunged by Stacey MacPherson. Rio is relatively new to vaulting but has already competed internationally and is developing the 'vault-ability' of his canter. Lizzie met him for the first time on the first day of competition and had only one brief opportunity to try her routines before showing them off to the judges!
Two of the compulsory moves: Basic seat and Bench.
The first routine, on Saturday 12th, was the canter compulsories, and was followed later the same day by the walk freestyle. Lizzie brought out her 'Aladdin' freestyle again, with a routine to an arrangement she made of the song 'One Jump Ahead' from the Disney film. The scores from the compulsories and freestyle routines were averaged to give a Round 1 score.
Freestyle moves demonstrating flexibility
Round 2 took place on Sunday 13th and consisted solely of a repeat of the walk freestyle. Following a messy mount on the first day, Lizzie was pleased to improve the mount but disappointed to fall on the dismount - something which had never been a problem in previous competitions!
The dismount on the day it went well!
Although she was a bit disappointed with her performances Lizzie still did well to vault on a completely unknown horse at this level and has retained the title of British Para Vaulting Champion for a fourth consecutive year.

We were also delighted that Cambs College RDA volunteer, Isabelle Holgate, was competing in the 1* individual and 1* Pas de Deux events. Along with her training partner, Sheri-Anne Smith, Isabelle came 1st in the Pas de Deux competition! Isabelle has recently started studying veterinary nursing at Hartpury College (having been impressed by the facilities whilst volunteering at the RDA Championships) but we hope she will return to RDA when her studies (and vaulting competitions!) allow.
Isabelle (in blue) and Sheri-Anne, also with an Aladdin theme for their freestyle. Isabelle is the Genie!
Many thanks to Becca Hewit, Stacey Macpherson, Anna-Marie MacPherson and Rio for all their help and support over the weekend.
Rio was very interested in the rosette!