Emotional Wells claims individual dressage gold

Equestrian Rider Sophie Wells MBE, (Individual Championship Test - Grade IV - Mixed), from Lincoln, wins a gold medal for ParalympicsGB at the Rio Paralympic Games 2016. Pic credit: onEdition.
Equestrian Rider Sophie Wells MBE, (Individual Championship Test - Grade IV - Mixed), from Lincoln, wins a gold medal for ParalympicsGB at the Rio Paralympic Games 2016. Pic credit: onEdition.

Sophie Wells and horse Valerius held their nerve in searing temperatures to claim Paralympic individual (IV) dressage gold.

Wells, 26, who trains at Papplewick Equestrian Centre, claimed team gold at London 2012 and won two silvers in her individual events on former horse Pinocchio.

She posted a score of 74.857 in her test at the Olympic Equestrian Centre to finish ahead of Belgium’s Michele George by just half a point.

She said: “I’ve been crying a lot, it feels pretty good. To be Paralympic champion is amazing and we’ve worked so hard as a team to get here and this is for everyone who has helped me.

“My aim was individual gold in London and that got away from me. When you’ve not got something, you want it even more and work so hard for it.

“He was brilliant. He’s such a talented horse, he knew what he had to do and I’m really proud of him.”