Thursday, September 01, 2011 15:45 BST
Hawley Bennett-Awad riding GIN & JUICE (CAN)
GIN & JUICE SHOWS SPIRIT
This year is the first time that California-based Canadian Hawley Bennett-Awad has competed at The Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials. Hawley (34) is however no stranger to the big time; last year with Gin & Juice she was a member of the Canadian team that impressed to win team silver at the World Equestrian Games in Kentucky. Earlier this year the pair came over to compete at Badminton and Hawley gained her first Badminton completion.
Gin & Juice AKA Ginny, is one of the ten mares that are competing at Burghley and at only 15.3hh is one of the four smallest horses. “She might not be big but she thinks she is King Kong,” said Hawley of the Thoroughbred mare that was bred by Linda and Terry Paine owners of Kingsway Farm in Temecula where Hawley in based. “She is a feisty mare and one of the most athletic horses I have sat on and the one I want to be on for my first Burghley.”
Hawley began riding Ginny when she was a ‘spunky’ five-year-old and the pair rose quickly through the grades. In 2009 they won the Canadian Bromont CCI**** and the following year was 17th at Lexington CCI**** gaining selection for the team for the World Equestrian Games and Ginny was awarded the USEA ‘Mare of the Year’ award. “That award is very special to me – she is such a little rock star,” said Hawley who trains with Buck Davison.
Hawley and Ginny have travelled over from California especially for Burghley and will return home next Wednesday. “Within a week she will be grazing in the field with her friends,” said Hawley who first of all has to concentrate on the cross-country course. “Everyone is saying how big it is but for us the bigger the better and I’m excited and looking forward to getting out of the start box on Saturday.”
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