“He was the only horse for sale on the island!”
Our latest Rising Star winner Lily Warburton tells her story of how living on the Isle of Man and regularly having to travel to the UK to compete makes her even more determined to achieve in the sport we all love, Equestrianism.
Lily is a young ambitious all-rounder who purchased Gordon, a 16 year old Irish Draught gelding two years ago. Gordon had done very little before teaming up with Lily and over the past two years they have both worked hard to achieve outstanding results in both dressage and showing.
‘I ended up purchasing Gordon after he was the only horse for sale on the island… I was looking for a 15.2hh sport horse type but I ended up with a 17.2hh Irish Draught! However, this was undoubtedly the best decision I have ever made and together we have achieved more than I ever thought was possible.
BD Quest Nationals
In October last year we made our first trip to the UK for the BD Quest Nationals which was not only nerve wracking but a long journey for both Gordon and I. Despite what many people may have said would be a setback we went on to achieve Bronze, a result I was absolutely thrilled with and worth the 20 hours of travelling.
During our second trip to the UK we placed 4th in a HOYS qualifier and we went on to have the opportunity to compete at one of the largest showing shows, Equifest. A dream of mine for as long as I can remember was to ride in an evening performance. Not only did we go onto perform in the evening performance but we also became the Veteran Champion at Equifest 2018. It really was a dream come true!
Gordon isn’t the only star of the family as I also own another horse with my mum, Jazz an 11 year old British Warmblood. We rescued Jazz 6 years ago and to begin with she was dangerous and unpredictable. We have worked really hard on Jazz’s behaviour and through the good and the bad we have never given up. After all of the hard work Jazz has turned a corner and is now progressing really well. I am hoping to bring her to the UK over the next couple of months to try and qualify for HOYS and other large Championships!’
How Lily felt to with the July to September Rising Star programme
‘It feels amazing to have won the programme. It was completely unexpected and I wouldn’t have known about any of it if I hadn’t spoken to the lovely ladies at Equifest! Hopefully working alongside Equilibrium Products opens new doors and creates exiting opportunities for me, I cannot wait for the future!’
Lily’s goals and aspirations for the future
‘My goals and aspirations for the future are changing all the time. I would love to qualify for HOYS on Jazz and next year we have trips to the UK planned to try and qualify for Olympia in veteran classes with Gordon. Gordon learns so fast and we have progressed from prelim to medium in the space of a year, hopefully we continue to progress and move up the levels as high as we are capable of!’
Why Equilibrium Products Chose Lily as the Rising Star Winner
Lily’s story was not only a testament to her riding but an inspiration to many of us who complain about our show venues and the distance we have to travel our horses. However, Lily has shown that no matter how far away she is or how long she has to travel she will do whatever it takes to be at the top of her sport.
We are very proud to support Lily and her horses Gordon and Jazz and we wish her the best of luck in the future and look forward to following her journey to stardom.