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Our congratulations go to Steph Smith in Year 13 for receiving the ‘Special Commendation’ by British Eventing for her volunteering work at Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials. 

At the event in September, Steph stepped up to the platform at the last minute, to lead a team of 100 volunteering Fence Judges when illness struck their organiser, and ensured everyone felt valued, knew their fence positions, and had all the equipment they needed.

It was then requested by the International Eventing Stewards, with just a few hours’ notice, that Steph place herself on the Cross Country course. Steph was placed right in the line of the jumping horses, to record the rider’s accuracy through the fences - a challenging task when a half tonne horse is heading towards you at 25 miles per hour! 

Steph has volunteered at Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials before in various roles over the last 5 years as part of the Young Equestrian Leaders Award, and regularly meets top riders such as, Mark Todd, Pippa Funnell and Zara Tindell.

If you would like to volunteer for future events, please visit the website at YELA.org.uk or Blenheimhorse.co.uk/volunteer

Photography courtesy of © Nigel Gooddard

In the photo, Steph Smith stands in the middle of the track judging the fence, as Oliver Townend (GBR) goes by to win the Event Riders Master series and a £50,000 prize fund.

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