Nick Skelton was presented with a special gift from Hickstead today in recognition of his extraordinarily successful showjumping career.
The 59-year-old, who announced his retirement from the sport earlier this year, was invited into the International Arena on the final day of the Longines Royal International Horse Show during a special ceremony that took place before the Longines King George V Gold Cup. Spectators were reminded of Nick’s many achievements within the sport – including his team gold medal at London 2012 and that unforgettable individual gold last summer in Rio.
He was presented with 12 crystal glasses engraved with the dates and winning horses from his four King’s Cup wins, three Hickstead Derby titles, three British Grand Prix victories and five FEI Nations Cup winning team appearances at Hickstead.
“We wanted to give Nick something to say a heartfelt thank you for all the many years of enjoyment he has given showjumping fans,” said Hickstead Director Lizzie Bunn. “Nick has been such a vital part of the British Showjumping team and we will really miss watching his skill and brilliance in the arena. Looking back over his record here at Hickstead, there can be few riders who have or will ever match Nick’s achievements at the All England Jumping Course.”
When Skelton claimed individual gold at Rio, he became Britain's first showjumping individual Olympic champion, as well as Team GB’s oldest gold medallist since Jerry Millner won in the shooting in 1908. Nick’s win at Rio 2016 marked an amazing comeback for a rider who had recovered from a broken neck some 16 years previously, and for a talented horse whose career had been punctuated by injury.