Sandy bound for Denmark with GB team

FOURTEEN-year-old Sandy Carson of Etal has been selected as the youngest member of the Great Britain Youth team for Icelandic Horses.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 23rd June 2010, 12:46 pm
Updated Wednesday, 23rd June 2010, 12:46 pm

The team of four selected youngsters will be competing at the 'International Youth Cup for Icelandic Horses' in Denmark in July.

Sandy first sat on an Icelandic horse at the age of three and since then, has never looked back!

He became the 'British Youth Tlt Champion' at 11 and has continued to grow into a well respected young horseman of Icelandic horse sport since. Earlier this year, Sandy became the 'Winter Tlt Youth Champion' and is now embarking on his first International competition for Icelandic horses.

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As well as being financially supported by their families to attend the Youth Cup, local company BEDMAX are lending their support to the youth team. Managing director Tim Smalley commented: "I have been to Iceland and seen the Icelandic horse in his home country and I have also seen Sandy in action riding his Icelandic horse, both in competition and also out on the hills hunting! BEDMAX are delighted to be able to support this young team from Britain and help them embark on this wonderful adventure."

The International Youth Cup for Icelandic Horses is held bi-annually and is for young horse riders between the ages of 14-18 years old. 2010 sees the event being hosted in Denmark, where 72 youngsters from around the globe spend three days training with top international trainers before the opening ceremony and two full days of competition.

The Icelandic horse is a five gaited horse; in addition to walk, trot, canter, the Icelandic also displays the gaits of Tlt (a four beat gait, performed at varying tempos) and Pace (a two beat lateral gait, used for racing).

In Britain, Icelandic horse sport remains a minority equestrian sport in comparison to Germany, where the Icelandic horse is the second most popular horse breed with the largest number of Icelandic horses outside of Iceland (circa. 70,000 horses).

Sandy is looking forward to being able to compete on an International scale and meet new friends from around the world with similar interests.

He said: "I am so delighted to have been selected to represent Great Britain, which is a huge honour! I am not sure the size of it will sink in until we arrive and especially when we enter the track with our Union Jack Flag at the opening ceremony. I am very much looking forward to the event and hope that I will learn a lot and also make my family and friends proud."