RIDER OF THE DAY: Paul Sims - 23 September 2011

Cheshire-based Paul has competed at international level both at home and abroad, and was the placed 2nd at last year’s Intermediate Championship at Gatcombe Park. Paul was placed 5th at the Bolesworth Castle Showjumping Classic qualifier, and was the top placed Young Rider.





1. How old were you when you started riding, who introduced you to riding and which was your first horse?
I was 2 yrs old on a family holiday in the lakes. We went pony trekking and I was hooked. I got the whole family then into horses. My first pony was shared with my brother, she was called Poppy.

2. How did you choose the music for the dressage to music phase?
I chose a song I quite liked then Eric who has put it all together for me has matched it to my horse.

3. Do you think horses enjoy the music, and do you feel it makes a difference to their/your performance?
Definitely with my horse. It lifts him in a good way and that makes me ride better.

4. How much practice did the dressage to music phase take?
It takes hours of practice to get it perfect, I’m still practicing now for the final.

5. What has been your most memorable moment of the Express Eventing 2011 Series so far?
As I have only done the one qualifier I would say the whole thing was memorable. It was a great day, I had lots of fun and to qualify was a bonus!

6. Who would be in your dream multi-national Olympic eventing team?
Michael Jung, Andrew Nicholson, Pippa Funnel and myself!

7. Do you reward your horses for a good performance and, if so, how?
After every event the horses get a few days in the field just chilling and being horses.

8. What has been the highlight of your career to date and why?
Winning a three-day event was pretty special and riding for my country when I show jumped in my earlier days.

9. What was your favourite subject at school and why?
Anything to do with sports. If it got me out the classroom I was in.

10. If you weren’t a professional event rider what would you like to do?
I’d quite like to give racing ago and I’d also like to get into training police dogs.

11. What would you most like to win that you haven’t already?
The list is endless. Badminton, Burghley the World Equestrian Games and the Olympics to name a few.

12. What is your favourite holiday destination? I love skiing.
Anywhere with lots of snow I love.

13. Which horse would you most like to have had the opportunity to compete on and why?
Shutterfly. He was just incredible.

14. When did you last fall off?
About a month ago off a young one playing up.

15. Do you have any pets at home?
Three dogs, Jake, Jeff and Cumberland.

16. What’s your favourite meal – and can you cook it?
Steak, chips and peas with peppercorn sauce. And yes, I can cook it.

17. Do you have any lucky charms or superstitions?
I’m very superstitious, saluting magpies for example. I haven’t really got any lucky charms though.

18. What’s your favourite one-day event?
I really love the Festival of British Eventing at Gatcombe. For me it’s a great course to ride round as it’s never a dressage competition.

19. What are you most looking forward to at the Final at the Horse of the Year Show?
I think the ross Country phase, but the whole day in general will be a great experience for me and my horse.

20. Who are you tipping to win the Final at the Horse of the Year Show?
Matthew Wright or Oliver Townend. But I’m not ruling my chances out just yet!






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