Marnie Clapham; Lockwood South VIC
Since the age of 3 Marnie has loved horses and especially the sport of dressage. Marnie started her journey with a very special 12.1 hh pony, named Tinkerbelle. She was bought as a 3 yr old when Marnie was 7 years old. At 10 yrs Marnie competed her at the NSW Young Rider dressage championships.
Marnie continued her journey competing at several state and national Young Rider Championships and was a successful recipient a NSW Dressage Scholarship.
Unfortunately, in 2014 Marnie suffered a major brain haemorrhage from a faulty blood vessel and spent 15 months in the brain injury unit, Westmead, unable to walk, speak or eat. Finally, she returned home mid 2015, wheelchair bound and ready to commence a new chapter of life. With immense determination and a burning desire to ride Marnie commenced at Riding for the Disabled in 2016.
- 2017 NSW RDA Championships with a score of 78%.
- 2018 Marnie was classified as a Grade 1 para-rider and competed successfully at NSW Para Dressage Clarendon.
- 2019 -Grade 1 winner at National RDA Championships.
- 2019 Marnie was classified as a Grade 1 FEI Para Equestrian and competed at several Para Olympic qualifying events culminating in being long listed for Tokyo Para-Olympics, named on the High Performance Para-dressage squad (emerging talents) and National Grade 1 Champion (Freedom Spyda) and Reserve Champion (Frantonio) in 2020.
Although Marnie continued to train during 2020, unfortunately her lease horse, Freedom Spyda badly injured himself and Marnie was unable to compete. She is hoping to find her next dressage partner to follow her dreams but in the meantime she is fortunate to ride the lovely Alibi, (17.1 hh, warmblood) at Balmoral Equestrian Centre under the super coaching of Julia Battams.