Yorkshire pair get ready to hit road in 200-mile charity trek

From left: Bertie, Clippie, ridden by Lauren Charlton, Lily, ridden by Debbie Eastwood, and Clover.From left: Bertie, Clippie, ridden by Lauren Charlton, Lily, ridden by Debbie Eastwood, and Clover.
From left: Bertie, Clippie, ridden by Lauren Charlton, Lily, ridden by Debbie Eastwood, and Clover.
TWO Yorkshire riders are going the ‘extra mile’ for charity ahead of next month’s Bakewell Show – 200 miles on horse-back just to get there.

West Hardwick’s Debbie Eastwood and Lauren Charlton from Crofton will begin riding the 200-mile Pennine Bridleway Trail from Kirkby Stephen in the Yorkshire Dales tomorrow.

The duo’s efforts will raise money for Weston Park Hospital with the pair set to finish their ride on Tuesday, August 6 – just in time to compete in a ridden heavy horse class at the Bakewell Show.

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The show’s main ring will provide the final destination for the adventurous pair who will complete their task on four horses – alternating between them from day to day.

The two riders will be backed by a dedicated support team in Eastwood’s husband Colin as well as Lauren’s parents Dave and Heather – with Eastwood confident of conquering the 200-mile expedition.

“Both Lauren and I are really excited about it now,” said Eastwood.

“Although the going is extremely tough in parts we’re sure the horses are all well up to it now, having ridden many, many miles on them in the last few months.”

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The two riders will take two horses each with Eastwood represented by her shires Clover (Fellview Brazilia) and Lily (Metheringham Upton Liberty).

Charlton’s horses – a shire and coloured cob – are named Bert (Fellview Bertie Wooster) – a son of Clover – and the grey Clippie, who has no registered name.

Charlton and Clover will ride between 15 and 20 miles a day with all four horses plus their two riders doing their bit for Weston Park Hospital where Eastwood’s 28-year-old son Tom has twice been treated for cancer.

He is now back to full health and a working Yorkshire farrier.

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Eastwood added: “The ride has been about six months in the serious planning stage, but has been in my mind for about 18 months.

“We finish at the Bakewell Show as Tom will be riding in the Yorkshire mounted games team who are taking part in a display there on the Wednesday and Thursday so we shall be going into the ring on both days – as well as the Tuesday.”

Titled ‘Deb Eastwood’s Weston Park Pennine Challenge’, the charity fund-raiser has its own Facebook page and anybody wishing to donate to the cause can do so by visiting www.justgiving.com/Westonparkpenninechallenge.

n Northallerton’s teenage star Laura Robinson has helped Great Britain to a European Jumping Championships silver medal.

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Competing at the competition in Vejer de la Frontera in Spain, 18-year-old Robinson partnered 14 year-old liver chestnut gelding, Cree Cruiser – jointly-owned by Neil Robinson and Geoffrey Robinson.

After picking up just 12 penalty points across two rounds of jumping, Great Britain’s quartet finished a gallant second to Switzerland who edged victory with eight penalty points.

The GB team also included Gloucestershire’s 18-year-old Emma O’Dwyer, Nottinghamshire’s 16-year-old Jake Saywell and Wiltshire’s 17-year-old Jessica Mendoza. The competition saw four combinations compete across two rounds with the best three of the four rounds counting.

n Northallerton eventer Nicola Wilson had her first outing on board Opposition Buzz since Luhmuhlen when finishing eighth in an Advanced class won by Andrew Nicholson on Calico Joe at Aston-Le-Walls at the weekend.

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The duo were eliminated after a cross-country fall in the CCI four-star event at Luhmuhlen with Wilson – who injured her knee – having returned the previous weekend at Great Witchingham. Huddersfield’s Oliver Townend was also in action at Aston-Le-Walls with his Power Drive enjoying a Novice victory.

Townend will be in action at Cholmondeley Castle in Cheshire this weekend with Wilson at Hopetoun International in West Lothian. Locally, this weekend’s focus is on the Thornton Watlass event at Breckenbrough.