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Olympian Equestrian Eventer and Trainer Bertie Hill

Bertie Hill demonstrates his equestrian skills and shows his horses at Rapscott on Exmoor

News 1968 1 mins

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A West Country farmer and equestrian eventer, Bertie Hill on Countryman III helped Great Britain to a team gold in Stockholm in 1956, placing twelfth in the individual competition. The 1956 Summer Olympics were held in Melbourne Australia except for the equestrian events which were moved to Sweden because of Australia's strict quarantine laws. Hill started his Olympic career at Helsinki in 1952 when he placed seventh in the individual three-day event.

Hill competed at the Rome Olympics in 1960 and with his wife Mary opened Rapscott School of Equitation on Exmoor where they trained international riders including Captain Mark Phillips and Princess Anne. In 1967 Hill was appointed as the first official trainer of the British Eventing Team taking them to success at the Mexico Olympics in 1968 where they won team gold and Derek Allhusen on Lochinver won an individual eventing silver. Equestrianism was introduced in 1900 at the Summer Olympics in France and the first events were open to military officers. Three-day eventing or dressage, eventing and showjumping came back in 1912 and has featured since. Women were admitted in 1952 and compete on equal terms.