FIVE GLOUCESTERSHIRE and Wiltshire riders have been selected for the British Equestrian Federation (BEF) Excel Talent Programme, which earmarks those with the potential to represent Great Britain on senior teams in the future.

Event riders Danielle Dunn (18) and Anna Horton (15) from Swindon, as well as Alicia Hawker (17) from Hullavington join Gloucestershire dressage riders Tess Harwood (15) from Cheltenham and Casey Stickland (17) from Hartpury on the programme.

The quintet attended an induction day at Warwick racecourse last month to learn more about the programme and will be given access to top equestrian specialists including coaches, physiotherapists, psychologists, vets and nutritionists via a series of rider performance camps.

Approximately 50 riders have been selected from all over the country and they were given the opportunity to speak to top-level competitors such as Laura Collett (Eventing) and Marie Eilberg (Dressage) on what it takes to succeed in their chosen discipline.

Alicia said: “I am very excited about the superb training opportunities and network of support that is available to me through the programme and I plan to make the most of both in order to help me achieve my goal of riding on a senior team.”

LOWER Stanton St Quinton’s Kitty King triumphed at the World Young Horse Championships at Le Lion d’Angers in France (October 20-23).

Kitty and her black mare Zidante, won the 7yo YH class after placing third in the 6yo class last year.

The dynamic duo were in third place after the dressage before a fast cross country phase moved them up to take the top prize.

Paul Tapner, from Highworth, looked to be heading for first place in the 6yo championship until a few mistakes on the final day saw he and Indian Mill drop back to 13th.

THE VWH HUNT Equine Table Top Sale and Craft Fair will be held at Cricklade Town Hall on Sunday, December 4.

Clear out your old tack and riding accessories in time for Christmas and head down to the fair which will run from 10am-1pm. Craft Tables are £10; Equine Tables: £5. Admission to the fair costs just £1.To book a table please call Rachel Beechey on 01285 810295.

THE SOUTH West Christmas Equine Fair takes place on December 3-4 at Westpoint in Exeter.

International riders will congregate at the event to perform masterclass sessions, including ‘The Swap’ with international showjumper Philip Spivey and Western Reining Champion Shane Borland taking to the arena to try their luck at each other’s discipline.

The Equine Fair also offers great Christmas shopping, new product launches and more top-class demonstrations.

Tickets are already on sale with a discounted rate to those booking in advance; contact 01749 813899 for more details.