The World Class Development Programme, Lottery funded through UK Sport ,was established in 2002 and underpins the World Class Performance Programme, by providing two key parts: World Class Start, designed to support talent identification and nurturing of that talent; World Class Potential, designed to assist in the development of that talent in the four Olympic / Paralympic equestrian disciplines, Eventing, Dressage, Show Jumping and Para Equestrian Dressage.
The philosophy behind the Start & Potential Programme is that training achieves excellence and correct training is the foundation to success. The Programme provides an established training pathway and is structured that it facilitates rider improvement that will see them progress from World Class Start through to World Class Potential and onto the Olympic and Paralympic Performance Programmes and includes the following elements:
Ø Competition experience including International exposure
Ø Coaching, advice and competitive support
Ø Equine sport science; soft tissue therapy, veterinary advice and education, equine nutrition, farriery advice and education
Ø Human sport science; fitness, nutrition, sports psychology, medical backup
Ø A comprehensive support network nationally and from around the world
Ø Performance analysis to enhance technique and improve performance
Ø Developing Teamwork and Team spirit through innovative squad sessions
Ø Lifestyle, business and communication advice
Ø The Programme seeks to develop the concept of developing riders basing themselves with established and successful senior riders.
The riders are reviewed on a 6 monthly basis, with targets and objectives being set and funding to assist with achieving these aims agreed. Selection is on a two yearly basis but this does not mean that a rider can not be taken on to the Programme during the 2 year cycle (or removed from the Programme!).
The Start and Potential programmes are proving a successful blue print for training future riders to move on to the Performance Programme, however to increase GB’s medal chances further, a more detailed Rider Performance Pathway is being developed that will profile the characteristics of a potential equestrian Olympic medalist, which will enable the Programme to provide a structured career path from an early age to the medal rostrum.