Chantal Simpson chases Australian para-equestrian dream

RIDING HIGH: Chantal Simpson has her eyes on a national spot.
RIDING HIGH: Chantal Simpson has her eyes on a national spot. Derek Barry

CHANTAL Simpson is set to represent Queensland with distinction - now she has her eyes on the big prize: riding for her country.

Chantal is a 20-year-old para-equestrian rider who lives with her mum and dad in Lockyer Waters and she has been at home on a horse since she was five years old.

Now partnered with her horse Sandford Luminate (pet name "Lulu"), Chantal is a regular at local dressage competitions and has also finished second in her class at the Australian Young Riders competition at Caboolture in July.

The rider that beat Chantal in Caboolture is a member of the Australian para-equestrian squad and it is Chantal's goal to join that squad.

Her dream is currently on hold as since that tournament, Chantal has been frustratingly grounded, a visit to the doctor diagnosing a broken shoulder that has kept her off Lulu for six weeks.

She hopes to be back on board in time for the Australia Special Olympics in Melbourne in October, where she will represent Queensland.

"It's a borrowed horse competition so I won't be able to ride Lulu," she said.

Proud dad Darren said she was off soon to Boondall to pick up her official uniform.

The ultimate goal is to represent Australia in the 2015 Special Olympic summer games in Los Angeles in 2015.

This will be the first time equestrian events will be included in the Special Olympics after being a demonstration sport in 2010.

Chantal has two overseas trips under her belt, to Taiwan in 2010 and 2012.

In 2012 Chantal travelled to Taiwan for the International Hope Cup, a dressage event for intellectually impaired and or physically disabled equestrian competitors.

Topics:  equestrian lockyer valley

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