Rutland eventing duo Richard and Victoria Jones on their plans for the season
The future is looking bright again for Rutland-based eventers Team Jones.
The South Luffenham eventing team has secured new sponsorship and is looking forward to a return to competitive action following the Covid-19 outbreak.
The season had started well for the husband-and-wife duo of Richard and Victoria Jones before the pandemic brought an abrupt halt to their season.
Richard, on board Alfie, had just won the Lincoln OI Trials while up-and-coming horses Grafics and Financial Express had put in equally good performances, all after foot perfect starts to the season at the Oasby Trials.
Victoria had made the trip north a few weeks earlier to the dressage season’s first Premier League where a fabulous 68.2 per cent earned her and leading dressage ride Extra II a top six position in a huge and very competitive PSG competition.
It meant they were knocking on the door for the 69 per cent international qualification figure before the lockdown scuppered their plans.
However, with the smaller competitions now set to open up, they raring to go again with the additional backing of saddle pad designer Sedelogic.
Sedelogic is new to the country but comes with a prestigious pedigree as an innovative Dutch developer of a range of shock absorbing, simple and flexible pads, clinically proven to reduce pressure and enhance performance.
Being able to work with two international riders was a coup for the new company and a real advantage for Team Jones.
Richard and Victoria have both found them to provide superior comfort for all their horses with particularly striking results in the more sensitive of their animals.
Victoria enthused: “They are simply the best and we couldn’t go back to riding without them.
“It has been an uncertain time with competition teams in lockdown. It’s been riding but not as we all know it.
“A lot of horse owners have been faced with the dilemma of how to look after competition or just leisure horses at a time of limited exercise and training visits during the lockdown.”
The lockdown has allowed Richard, Victoria and their team to bring on their youngsters without the pressure of an upcoming event.
Alfie’s Clover, still a relatively young horse who has featured at the Burghley Horse Trials, has been on sabbatical, ready to pick up where he left off but refreshed and revitalised.
Although it’s unlikely that any top competitions will be back on the calendar this year, there should be smaller competitions to look forward to and Richard is still hopeful that some bigger competitions will open up later on so Grafics is still being aimed at the three-star event Osberton meeting in October.