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Top equestrians unite to support NHS heroes

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Leading riders from across the disciplines have pledged their support for a major fundraising initiative for the NHS heroes, launched by the team behind Bolesworth and Liverpool International Horse Shows

Equestrian Relief is an urgent fundraising campaign to raise money and change lives, with donations going directly to support the efforts of the wonderful work being carried out by the NHS. Leading names have pledged their support, from eventing world champions Ros Canter and Zara Tindall to Olympic gold medallists Carl Hester and Scott Brash, and racing legends AP McCoy and Frankie Dettori.

What you need to know

With further details due to be revealed over the coming days, the key details are as follows. The campaign will be run through the Liverpool International Horse Show social media accounts. So, to join in with the fun, head to Facebook (@LiverpoolInternationalHorseShow), Instagram (@liverpoolhorseshow), Twitter (@LiverpoolInt), and follow the hashtags #EquestrianRelief #StayHomeSaveLives. Plus, tune in at 7pm each evening from 6–13 April, where daily highlights will be broadcast.

Each day two members of each team will take part in a daily challenge, with a goal to raise £100,000 in 10 days that will go directly to NHS Charities Together COVD-19 Urgent Appeal. The five challenges, designed to test riders’ skills physically, creatively and artistically, are…

  • On the Gallops Run 5k in the fastest possible time
  • Plankety Plank Hold the plank position for the longest time possible
  • Horse Drawn Paint or draw your best achievement incorporating your horse
  • Showstopper Bake up a cracking, egg-cellent Easter-themed cake
  • Dark Horse Let that hidden party trick rise to the fore

Meet the teams

#TeamEventing

  • Current World Champion, Ros Canter
  • Former World and European Champion, plus Sports Personality 2006, Zara Tindall
  • Current World #1, Oliver Townend
  • China’s first-ever equestrian Olympic athlete, Alex Hua Tian
  • Current British Open Champion, Ben Hobday

#TeamShowjumpingNorth

  • International showjumper and former Youth European Gold medallist, William Whitaker
  • Two-time Olympian, Geoff Billington
  • European Bronze medallist, Ellen Whitaker
  • Global Champions Tour rider and son of Olympic gold medallist Peter Charles, Harry Charles
  • Irish international showjumper, Anthony Condon

#TeamShowjumpingSouth

  • Olympic gold medallist, Scott Brash
  • Irish international showjumper, Shane Breen
  • Director at Hickstead, TV presenter and classical singer, Daisy Bunn
  • Former European Youth gold medallist, Jessica Mendoza
  • International showjumper, Jay Halim

#TeamDressage

  • Olympic gold medallist, Carl Hester
  • Four-time Olympian, Richard Davison
  • World silver medallist, Gareth Hughes
  • Dressage rider and wife of Chelsea Footballer John Terry, Toni Terry
  • International dressage rider, Sarah Higgins

#TeamRacing

  • Racing legend, Champion Jump Jockey and BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2010, AP McCoy
  • Racing Legend and Three-time Champion Flat Jockey, Frankie Dettori
  • BBC Sports Presenter and star of Strictly Come Dancing, Mike Bushell
  • ITV Racing Presenter, Oli Bell

The campaign will also be launching a charity auction on Monday 6 April with a host of ‘money can’t buy’ experiences up for grabs, such as the chance to get on-on-one with a number of equestrian celebrities for an exclusive online Q&A session online, or a one of the paintings produced by the teams in the Horse Drawn challenge!

With riding deemed a high-risk activity, tasks are designed to shine a light on our top athletes’ alternative skills, Zara Tindall explaining: “[We] have a responsibility to minimise the impact on the NHS who are valiantly working to support the nation and save lives. Taking part in Equestrian Relief and knowing that donations are going directly to help NHS workers on the frontline makes it a no-brainer for me.”

This event has already highlighted the strength of the equestrian community, with riders from all corners of the sport pledging their support. Olympic gold medallist Scott Brash is pleased to be one of the top athletes involved: “All over the country we’re coming together to support the phenomenal NHS staff during these very challenging times. As a strong equestrian community, we must stay united in the battle against Covid-19 and we’re hopeful that Equestrian Relief can make a huge impact in raising funds directly to support those who are putting their own lives at risk to help others. Let the challenges commence and please make sure you support us and give what you can to this incredible cause.”

Bolesworth Managing Director Nina Barbour was quick to praise the support of the fabulous sponsors who have already come onboard to support the cause, and continued: “Our priority is to unite the horse world to support our health workers, and our goal is to raise a sum of money that will make a real difference. All donations will go directly to NHS Charities Together Covid-19 Crisis Fund – supporting NHS staff and volunteers on the frontline as they work under pressure and in the most challenging of circumstances.”

For more details of the Equestrian Relief campaign and how you can get involved, visit equestrianrelief.com. Or, to donate, visit the Virgin Money Giving Link: bit.ly/EquestrianRelief2020

 

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