Louise to jump for glory for Scotland

Louise Hebdon and Rock on Raffy
Louise Hebdon and Rock on Raffy

Louise Hebdon from Eccles will pull on the Scotland jersey next week when she competes in the National Inter Academy showjumping event.

Louise, who has been riding since the age of seven, but only jumping since the end of last year, is one of a number of young Borders riders picked to represent their country at the event in Coventry on August 20 and 21, which will see them compete against riders from all over the UK.

Thirteen year old Louise trains at Ladykirk under the watchful eye of Lucy Simpson and said she was thrilled to be picked to take part in the competition having impressed selectors at the British Junior Academy Showjumping camp at the Scottish National Equestrian Centre in Oatridge, West Lothian at the start of July.

“I was really pleased when I found out I’d been picked,” Louise told ‘The Berwickshire.

“I haven’t competed at such a high level before at and at the moment I’m feeling a mixture of nerves and excitement.

“I did a bit of pony club when I first started riding but there’s something about showjumping that I love.

“I think it’s the thrill of the competition; the speed and wanting to beat everyone else.”

Team GB’s equestrian representatives certainly got the better of their fair share of opponents at last year’s London Olympics and like other viewers, Louise couldn’t help but me impressed by their medal winning exploits.

“I really enjoyed watching the Olympics; it was really exciting,” she continued.

“My favourite showjumper at the moment is Scott Brash from Peebles (Olympic gold medallist).

“I’d love to be able to compete at that kind of level and get that kind of success eventually.”

Louise will travel to Western Lawns in Coventry with her horse Rock On Raffy who like her has been preparing for the big event.

Louise rides two horses, the other being Blue Shadow, but it was onboard Raffy that she impressed competition representatives the most at last month’s Oatridge camp.

“I’ve had him three years now and I think he’s ready for the competition.

“I’m practising an hour a day in the run up to the competition.

“I’ve been doing as much jumping as I can and taking him out to ride on the beach as well. I’m hoping we can do well.”