IRELAND’S Badminton Horse Trials tale of triumph was that of Lucy Latta, who seemed to come from nowhere to finish second at the prestigious five-star event on RCA Patron Saint.

Speaking to The Irish Field this week, she explained how careful preparation and a winning mindset helped her achieve her dream,

“I qualified in Blair after finishing fourth - it was a really good four-star long to do in prep, as it was hilly and soft, and he went really well, which gave me such a positive mindset and the confidence he would handle a track that big.

“We left no stone unturned in preparing after that - travelling to England twice, finishing third in Oasby, before training with Caroline Moore for a week, and then going back to do the four-star short at Burnham – it was a really nice prep run.

“Going out on Saturday, I watched a few go, and horses were finishing tired, but I had in my mind he was well able to stay the distance. The first six fences set us up, huntsman’s was the first accuracy test, but he answered all the questions and I knew he was on song. He is so clever, brave as a lion, but very measured.

“There’s no horse I’d rather be on – Saturday was the best cross-country round of my life, but he has always made big tracks feel so good. On Sunday, I didn’t know how people ahead of me jumped, because the crowd cheer so loud I assumed most were clear or had one down. The first knock was rider error and he tipped one, after going around a five-star the day before I was really pleased with how he jumped.

“I assumed I had dropped down from third – so to realise I moved up was just incredible. I hoped for a good performance, but I didn’t dream of second!

Latta, who works full- time as a brand manager, manages to balance her duties at work with her horses, thanks to flexible working arrangements.

“It’s difficult – but the thing that’s changed the game is Covid – you do need to have good organisational skills, to find time not just for him but for my own fitness – I was aware I needed to be ultra fit – but it’s so worth the time.”


Latta is bred in the purple as a granddaughter of William Powell Harris, who competed at Badminton and was a reserve for the 1972 Munich Olympics.

Her first cousin, Esib Power is a renowned international eventer, who has competed at Badminton on four occasions, while Esib’s brother Robbie was a Cheltenham Gold Cup and Grand National-winning jockey.

Latta came up through pony club with the Island Hunt and 12.2 show jumping before turning to eventing, where she was on three pony European teams, as well as a juniors team, where she won a gold European medal. “I missed out on YR Europeans due to horse injuries – so I have first hand experience of the struggles of the sport, which led to me pursuing an undergraduate Degree in Sports Management and a Masters in Management.

“For now, I’ll stick at the career, I would consider horses full-time but I haven’t made my mind up – there are so many struggles, highs and lows.”

Unsurprisingly, Latta is now dreaming of Paris. “It would be a dream come true to be selected for the Olympics. I was announced on the long list at the start of the year, so we will see. He’ll have a nice break now and it will depend on Olympics whether I aim him for Burghley.

“He’s a sweet horse in the stable, very relaxed, he makes life easy for himself, has a nice lie down after breakfast – he was incredibly well-behaved with the crowds.

“He answered the questions at every level going up, that’s when you start to think, could they? But you don’t know until you get there. I didn’t go just to get around. I knew if he was the same horse I rode around Oasby, I was going to give it a go – but for it come off so smooth, it’s the most incredible feeling.”

Latta gave huge thanks to her owner, Lesley Crampton, who “has been on board from the start and such a big support”, her cousin Esib Power and her uncle Captain Con Power.

She also said it was incredibly special for her grandfather William to have been able to watch and support at home.

Full report on Badminton 2024 page 89, Michael Callery Breeders’ 10 page 91 and Badminton breeding feature pages 92-93.