Eventer setting sights on Rio

Salmon Arm’s Rebecca Howard and her talented steed Riddlemaster are setting their sights on the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil

Winning combination: Rebecca Howard and her horse Riddlemaster competed in the 2012 Olympic Games

Salmon Arm’s Rebecca Howard and her talented steed Riddlemaster are setting their sights on the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil.

Howard and Riddlemaster – or Rupert as he’s known to his friends – have just been named to the short list of the 2015 National Eventing Team. They were among 10 horse and rider pairs recently appointed to the list along with 32 named to the long list.

The short list is made up of those who are capable of being on the team, Howard says, but final selection comes later. Those on the short list have had proven results at international three- and four-star competitions.

Being on the short list provides training assistance to her when the Canadian national coach comes to England, as well as funding support.

Howard and Riddlemaster have been living and training in England since they competed in the  2012 Olympic Games in London.

Riddlemaster has been doing well in high-level competitions since then, but hit the back rail of a jump with his hind leg at the Badminton Horse Trials in May. He injured his stifle joint, so was forced to take an extended rest at the farm in Marlborough near London where he stays.

Howard has just started working him.

“He’s looking and feeling really good – he’s just getting fit again.”

She’s confident he’ll be back at full strength.

“It’s never a sure thing, I suppose, but everybody is pretty optimistic. He looks really well, he just needed the time to recover. It’s just a matter of getting him fit again.”

The goal is to get Rupert back up and acquiring qualifications for the Olympics, she says.

In the meantime, Howard is hoping to track down a horse for the Pan Am Games next July in Toronto.

“I’m trying to be creative and figure one out. If it doesn’t happen in the next six or eight weeks it won’t happen, but it’s not out of the question.”

If she secures a horse, she doesn’t know if she will definitely get to go.

Along with Riddlemaster, Howard says she has four to six horses at the farm.

“I ride for Tim and Jonelle Price – my horses are based at their farm. I train my horses out of their facility as well as ride for them.”

She says Riddlemaster makes it difficult to find another horse.

“Rupert is an exceptional horse and those don’t come along every day.

Finding others attempting to follow in his footsteps is the hard part.”

Howard came to Salmon Arm recently for an early Christmas where she taught a few clinics, visited with family and managed to get in a ski at Larch Hills.

Although her roots are in Salmon Arm, she loves England too.

“I love the sport over here as well as the country to live in. You can’t compare the sport over here, it is the best in the world, no doubt. As a place to live, I really really like it.”

 

Just Posted

In photos: The 27th Annual Salmon Arm Roots and Blues Festival

Images from Friday evening and Saturday at the festival grounds.

Summerland cannabis shop receives approval in principle

Inspection now required before Green Gaia may sell cannabis

North Okanagan-Shuswap Liberal candidate responds to Trudeau ethics report

Prime Minister’s immediate response to commissioner’s findings appreciated

Shuswap tow truck operator sees high number of collisions this summer

Drivers encouraged to “loosen up behind the wheel, smarten up and read the road”

VIDEO: Langley Ribfest met with protesters

Groups that oppose the event for various reasons plan to be on site each of the three days.

Canadians killed in Afghanistan honoured during emotional dedication ceremony

One-hundred-fifty-eight Canadian soldiers died during the mission

It’s snow joke: Up to 30 cm of snow expected to fall in northeastern B.C.

Alaska Highway, Fort Nelson to be hit with August snowstorm, according to Environment Canada

‘I’m just absolutely disgusted’: Husband furious after B.C. Mountie’s killer gets day parole

Kenneth Fenton was sentenced to prison after he fatally struck Const. Sarah Beckett’s cruiser

Sea-to-Sky Gondola in B.C. likely out of commission until 2020

Sea to Sky Gondola carries between 1,500 and 3,000 people every day during the summer season

Helicopter-riding dog Mr. Bentley now featured on cans of new B.C.-made beer

Partial proceeds from every pack go to Children’s Wish

PHOTOS: Weapons seized at Portland right-wing rally, counterprotests

Not all who gathered Saturday were with right-wing groups or antifa

Retrieved body from Okanagan Lake identified as missing kayaker

Zygmunt Janiewicz had been missing since May and was recovered Aug. 10

Paddleboard festival coming soon to Kalamalka Lake

Wildfire smoke got in the way of last year’s event, but conditions look better this summer

Most Read