For Ben, the road to becoming a event rider began as an enthusiastic six year old, although Ben began riding at 4 years old. A partnership with a cheeky little dun pony known as Rabbit brought him his first lot of success, winning at most of the local shows and including a bigger win at the first ridden championships at Ponies UK.
At Lancashire’s Holcombe Hunt pony club Ben’s talent became visible, qualifying for the Pony Club championships in all three phases; the first to do so in his pony club for 25 years.
After starting as a working pupil for Cheshire based Hannah Bate, he went on to seize the chance to work for acclaimed rider, William Funnell. Gaining valuable experience in the world of show jumping as well as gaining invaluable knowledge from William’s wife; top international three day event rider Pippa Funnell MBE. It was there that the first inklings of a special riding skill were acknowledged. Ben’s talent began to be encouraged and then refined, to the point where he would win the U21 National championships and then go on to be selected for the World Class Start Programme, followed with selection for Britain’s young rider squad, giving him the chance to compete with the very best in the Europe.
Since then Ben has jumped double clear round some of the biggest events in the world including Badminton, Burghley, Bramham, Blenheim, as well as completing Pau four star.
Team GOLD medal Germany Kreuth European Championships
Individual BRONZE Medal Germany Kreuth European Championships
6th individually European championships Blair Castle
Winner Weston park CCI** U21 championships
8th U18 championships Chepstow
2nd 5year old Burghley Young Event Horse Final
4th Bramham CCI***
5th Bramham CCI***
6th Bramham CCI***
Winner Best Under 25 Burghley Horse Trials CCI***
Ben is also somewhat of a social media sensation and can be followed on twitter, facebook and his website – look out for his ‘hashtag’ #yehboi !