AN OLYMPIC medallist hosted a course walk at Belsay International Horse Trials.

Kristina Cook, a three-day eventing rider and three-time Olympic medallist, hosted a course walk on the first day of the competition on Thursday, June 2 at 4pm.

The event was in aid of the British Eventing Support Trust, which supports injured riders and aims to improve the safety and wellbeing of those involved in the sport.

The trust aims to help riders, whether that be recovering from an eventing accident or coping with mental health challenges.

It also seeks to promote, research, develop and implement initiatives which will help maintain the overall safety and welfare of riders.

Laura de Wesselow, Belsay International Horse Trials organiser, said: "Tina took anyone who was interested around the course, talked through each event and how to ride them, and gave some insight into what it's like to be an event rider."

Tina was the 2009 European Champion at the European Eventing Championships and won individual and team bronze medals in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, and team silver in the 2012 Olympics in London.

Laura said the event also supported the charity British Equestrians for Ukraine, which supports Ukrainian horses, owners and carers affected by the Ukrainian conflict.

She said the competition is an important selection time for riders, with the British Pony Championship taking place with a squad selected to represent the UK in Poland.

The Belsay Trials is one of three riding events to host the Northumberland CCI2* Challenge, which offers horse and rider combinations entering the CCI2* the opportunity to win several cash bonuses.

Laura said: "Eventing is an expensive sport and with diesel prices as high as they are currently, we wanted to create something that would really encourage competitors to make the journey north to our fabulous venues in Northumberland. 

"We approached A.W. Jenkinson to come in as the sponsor as they are already involved at both Belsay and Burgham, where they generously provide bedding for our residential stabling," she added.