Para-dressage rider dreaming of Rio

Theresa McCaffrey

Para-dressage rider dreaming of Rio

Para-dressage rider dreaming of Rio

Dressage was thrust into the public eye during the London 2012 Olympic Games as Team GB romped home to victory.

As the likes of Carl Hester, Laura Bechtolsheimer and Charlotte Dujardin collected their gold medals at Greenwich Park, they were also providing huge inspiration for budding dressage eventers across the country. One of those was para-dressage rider Natasha Adkinson who is hoping to impress selectors so she can live out her own Olympic dream and head off to Rio de Janeiro for the 2016 Games.

Natasha suffers from an illness known as Vacterl Syndrome which affects her spine, limiting her mobility and making her prone to dislocation. However, this has not stopped her attempting to be on the plane heading to Brazil to represent Team GB in just under three years time. 2013 has also been a very busy year for Natasha as she excels in a number of high profile competitions.

In a column for The Epworth Bells & Crowle Advertiser she explains that she is cherishing every moment on the competition circuit with her 12-year-old, 16.3hh GermanWarmblood, Danny who she owes a lot of her success to. Her partnership with her horse has been blossoming and saw her represent Great Britain at the 2* Senior International in August.

Natasha now holds even higher ambitions and is already gearing up for the Open Winter Championships at Hartpury in April and also the Restricted Championships. However, the main goal is to impress Olympic selectors enough to put her in the squad for the Paralympic Games in Rio.

"My goal for next year is to be selected for GB. The Road to Rio is also an exciting prospect. It is great to think I have actually started on the journey which could also include selection for the World Equestrian Games and Europeans. Bringing back a gold medal would be my ultimate dream!" Natasha added.