12 January 2017

Another Fun Year at Olympia

Once again Lloyd Bell Productions had the privilege of working at The London International Horse Show at Olympia, providing content for local and national TV and radio stations. Both myself and our editor arrived at Olympia ready for a week of intense work getting interviews with riders and producing content for radio and TV stations to use for their own use, as well as producing films for YouTube.

This year was particularly special as it saw the retirement of one of Dressage’s greatest horses Valegro, which attracted an incredible amount of interest with spectators coming from all over the world. Three-time Olympic Champions Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro entered the Olympia Grand Hall for a final time, and nailed their performance of their London 2012 Gold medal winning freestyle test. It was a touching retirement performance from a horse so highly regarded amongst fans across the globe; but what made it extra special was the fact that he bowed out in style on home soil.

As well as Valegro’s retirement, the Olympia stage also celebrated British successes of 2016. The Friday night saw our Olympic and Paralympic champions parade around the Olympia arena in a blaze of glory! Nick Skelton Rio 2016 Gold Medallist and of course London 2012 Triple gold medallist, Charlotte Dujardin OBE lead the way, joined by the Dressage silver medal team at Rio, Carl Hester, Fiona Bigwood and Spencer Wilton. This just added to the real ‘feel-good’ factor of this year’s Olympia – smiles on faces were to be seen throughout!

Aside from the horses, it was also nice to see golfer Lee Westwood. Lee is actually a racing enthusiast, but sharing the same agent as Scott Brash – Chubby Chandler – he popped into Olympia to show his support. We treated Lee to a backstage tour which he thoroughly enjoyed, hopefully we will see him next year!

As far as Olympia goes, this year was as good as it gets. The retirement of Valegro combined with Olympic celebrations meant a real circus fled into London. The 2am finishes were definitely worth it for a show that continues to make me smile.

By Rupert Bell