WELL-KNOWN equestrian wholesaler and the brains behind Zebra Products, Simon Middleton was recently invited to ride Gareth Hughes’ Grand Prix ride, Classic Briolinca.

Simon has been a long-time supporter of Gareth and his wife Rebecca through one of the leading brands he distributes Königs riding boots.

Together with Julia Hornig, Gareth and Rebecca run and own the leading retailer Classic Dressage and Simon has been doing business with the company for nearly 20 years.

As a thank you for his many years of sponsorship and close working relationship, Simon first rode the seven-year-old Classic Goldstrike, Rebecca’s exciting up and coming prospect.

Classic Briolinca is ranked 42nd in the FEI World Rankings and scored more than 76% at Le Mans recently.

Gareth’s top Grand Prix horse, Classic Briolinca is now 12 but first joined the team as a three-year-old.

Said Simon: “I had the most amazing day with Julia and Rebecca. I had been very lucky in the past as Julia previously let me ride her retired Grand Prix horse, Dolendo who was with Carl Hester.

“However the opportunity to ride one of the top Grand Prix horses currently in the UK was an unbelievable privilege and honour. I am so lucky, a big thank to Julia, Rebecca and Gareth.

“The lesson with Rebecca gave me the opportunity to learn more about passage, flying changes and half pass and will certainly go down as a real highlight in my riding experiences.”