Olympia International Horse Show 2016 – The Pride of Portugal performance!

Last December was a hugely busy time here with shoots and getting ready for Christmas – inbetween the hectic, I managed to escape the office and head up to London with my camera for a day to see and capture the “Pride of Portugal” display at the Olympia International Horse show, a real treat!

We’ve had a love for the beautiful Portuguese breed – the Lusitano – ever since we first started photographing horses back in 2013. We already had a passion for Portugal, where we had got married in 2008. Such beautiful loyal, agile, and hard working horses – they are hard to resist. So when we found out that our friend and colleague, Sherene Rahmatallah, of Sussex Lusitanos, was bringing a team of riders over for a display at Olympia, it was too good to miss!

I only had one free day to spend at Olympia, so I headed up to London for the opening night of the show. Coincidentally, this was also the day of the retirement of Valegro who was to be ridden by Charlotte Dujardin, and then have his formal ‘retirement ceremony’ in the arena with Charlotte and Carl Hester, just before the Portuguese performance – what an amazing opportunity! Thanks to Sherene, I was also able to gain access backstage to see the horses and riders preparing, and also in rehearsal in the arena on the morning of the first show. The team comprised a group of 16 professional riders and Lusitanos from all over Portugal, who were brought together especially to perform at Olympia, in collaboration with associate Filipe Pimenta of N.Pimenta, based in Ponte de Lima, Portugal.

In Sherene’s words, “The Pride of Portugal was the most ambitious display that we have brought over from Portugal, much larger than the Lusitano displays we brought to Royal Windsor Horse Show in 2003, 2004 and 2007. It differed in content from previous Lusitano displays – several exciting floor plans with accompanying music that was modern and relative to the audience”. She added:  “I am glad to say the Pride of Portugal display was an outstanding triumph – 16 brilliant horses and riders, 3 grooms and a committed management team who all worked together to promote the Lusitano horse on the world stage. “

The performance was simply breathtaking! As it came to a close that first night, I felt mesmerized and moved by the passion of the riders and their horses –  the combination of great riding skill with amazing horses, dancing to a musical theme just worked brilliantly.

This November we also visited Golega horse show, where together with Sherene we presented one of the photographs from the performance to Filipe Pimenta, who had been hugely supportive of the Pride of Portugal display, as a thank you gesture (pictured below with Sherene in Golega).

You can read more about the planning, preparation, and see footage of the show itself on the ‘Pride of Portugal’ page here:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/PrideofPortugalLusitanos/?ref=br_rs

 

Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford

Olympia 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

Olympia Horse Show 2016 Jo Hansford

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Jo and Nic Hansford are based in Bristol, Bath, Somerset and are available to travel nationally and internationally.

01179535801 | 07876344866

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