A COUNTY rider said it would be a dream to compete at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020 after been selected for the World class Podium Potential Programme.

Franky Reid-Warrilow, from Presteigne, is a European gold medalist and a member of the GB Nations Cup team in eventing.

The programme is part of UK Sport’s National Lottery funded investment strategy to win medals at the Olympic Games and other international championships, as well as support the longer term growth of British equestrian sport.

The programmes philosophy is to identify talent and support the athletes who they believe have the potential to become podium athletes on the world stage.

"This has been a goal of mine since I started riding competitively and it means that I am one step closer to winning a senior championship medal," said Reid-Warrilow.

"The Olympics is the ultimate dream, but it looks like the format will be changed for Tokyo.

"At Rio, Great Britain took four members in the team and one individual, whereas for Tokyo, it looks like there will only be three members in the team, so it makes it harder to be selected.

"You also have to make sure you have a horse young enough in your yard that will be ready for the Olympics.

"My best horse is Dolly Whisper, but she will be too old.

"You will have to have a six, seven or eight-year old now with the intention of taking them to the Olympics because 11 to 13 is normally a good age."

Reid-Warrilow says she is inspired by what dressage riders such as Charlotte Dujardin and Nick Skelton achieved at the Rio Olympics.

"Charlotte has done so much for dressage and equestrianism in general, whereas Nick Skelton is at the other end of the spectrum.

"It goes to show that our sport is unique because you do not have a peak age."

The chance of Red-Warrilow getting to this stage of her career looked bleak in 2014 when she broke her hip and ribs just three weeks before the European Championships.

But she battled back to claim a team silver and individual gold medals at the championships in Holland the following year and she is aiming to get to the Poland championships this year.

"For the last couple of years, it's been a bit crazy and, individually, I've had achievement after achievement," said Reid-Warrilow.

"Going to a competition and winning it is great, but being selected for something is totally different.

"Suddenly, you are being recognised and someone is willing to invest in you.

"However, in terms of my goals, I'm still at the bottom of the ladder.

"There's so many things I still want to achieve."

Richard Waygood, world class eventing performance manager, said Reid-Warrilow is able to get the best out of every horse she rides.

"She is extremely self-motivated and able to use her own initiative to solve problems she encounters in ingenious ways," he said.

"Franky is naturally a positive person who has a zest and lust for life that is infectious to all those around.

"Her honesty and integrity are beyond reproach.

"She is a talented rider who is able to cope with the pressures of competition in a mature manor beyond her years.

"I would highly recommend Franky to any potential eventing owner as I have 100 per cent faith in her prowess"

British eventing coach Lizzel Winter added: "Franky is simply an outstanding example of professionalism; she shows such a great feel and balance with her horse.

"She has a clear vision of where she sits in the sport and knows where she wants to go and exactly how she is going to get there."