Here Robinson Animal Healthcare catches up with their sponsored rider, double gold medal winner Sophie Wells, following a phenomenal World Equestrian Games.
Q. Congratulations on a phenomenally successful World Equestrian Games. Two gold medals and team silver, did this surpass your expectations?
A. Definitely the individual medals. The performances that managed to come together in the arena were unbelievable, I know Jorge can go that well at home but getting that in the arena at the right time is harder than you think. So, I’m so pleased to have shown people what he can do!
Q. This was your 10th year being a part of the Equestrian Team GBR team; does it still give you the same satisfaction to be part of the team?
A. Absolutely. It was my 10th straight Para championship and in that time I’ve done two young rider Europeans too, but it is still a massive honour to represent your country, and I don’t think that will ever change!
Q. You gained two WEG record scores, in the team competition and the Freestyle how did this feel?
A. It’s insane to think even think about! You can become quite outcome focused if you think about scores too much, but I’ve worked a lot on the process with my sports psychologists since 2016 and that’s really helped, the results look after themselves then.
Q. You talked about the contribution of your team to your success. Although it is an individual sport, does it feel like a team effort?
A. Absolutely, to get the horses and riders in the right shape to go out and perform like we need to, it requires so many people, experts in their own field. You have to really trust them, but thankfully I’ve worked with many of them for years.
Q. Did Jorge get a special reward for his outstanding performances?
A. It’s so funny because they really have no idea what they have just done! It’s quite humbling. He had some big carrots and lots of pats and kisses. If he can have snacks and naps he’s the happiest horse in the world! He will be pleased to get out in his field though I’m sure.
Q. The team secured qualification for Tokyo 2020, will this now be your focus?
A. It certainly will – we have the Europeans in Rotterdam next year which will be used to prepare both horses and riders for Tokyo. I have an exciting string of horses at the moment, so I’m hoping that if I can keep them fit and well in their training, it will be an exciting couple of years.
Q. What has life been like since you returned home?
A. My feet haven’t touched the floor yet! I had two competitions to go to with clients the week I got back, and I have a packed competition schedule to get the rest of the horses qualified for the regionals, and lots of teaching, but it’s what I love.
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