14-year-old Charlie Adkins, from Newport, has taken lockdown as an opportunity to compete nationally by taking part in online dressage competitions.

The online competition works by filming a set course and uploading the video to the internet to be judged.

Both Charlie and his mum, Sophie, admit that the rather different approach took a bit of getting used to with mum having to learn to video properly for a start!

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Charlie has been competing and winning with a borrowed pony ‘Abbotswood Zeus’, as his own pony has had some time off over the Autumn period.

Charlie’s most recent success was winning the Elementery test in the e-riders online league and also coming 2nd on a new platform, Cashonline Dressage, where he won the highest marks of all the male entries. This bagged Charlie some clothing from Close Contact, the event sponsors.

Speaking about his recent experience, Charlie has said:

“Doing online dressage means that you can have a couple of goes at your test to get the filming right. Being a perfectionist this can sometimes mean that you put pressure on yourself to do an even better test each time, so sometimes it is just best to accept the ‘first take’ like you would in a normal competition.

“The feedback for these online competitions is often more detailed so is a great way to learn and improve”.

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Island Echo