With Royal Windsor Horse Show fast approaching, from 10–14 May, Show Ambassadors Joe Stockdale and Jack Whitaker took part in a unique activity with the Show’s Principal Partner; Defender, to encounter a different type of horsepower ahead of their appearance in the CSI5* Show Jumping.
Royal Windsor Horse Show and Defender have been in partnership for over three decades, where Defender’s equestrian aims and values mirror that of the Show’s, harmoniously combining heroic sportsmanship, iconic history and spectacular prestige. In 2023, Defender will not only continue to be the Principal Partner of the Show, they will also be sponsoring the Defender CDI4* FEI Dressage, the Defender Shetland Pony Grand National, The Defender Stakes and The Defender Challenge Stakes.
In the run up to the Show, Stockdale and Whitaker travelled to Ledbury, Herefordshire, to take part in the extremely popular Defender Experience Day. The first part of the day consisted of an adventurous off-road experience where the riders put the Defender through its paces across difficult terrain. Both driver and Defender worked in partnership as they glided with ease through deep water challenges, rutted tracks, and steep gradients.
The latter section of the day featured a highly technical skills test with a twist. Under specialist supervision and in a controlled environment, Stockdale took to the wheel blindfolded, while Whitaker took on the sole responsibility of guiding him through the course from the ground. The key part of the challenge was to avoid hitting the narrowly positioned flags, which they completed as a team without fault. Following the challenge Whitaker joked; “Joe did well under my instruction to avoid hitting the flags on this test, we make a good team, he might need me in the ring at Royal Windsor to help!”
Commenting on Defender’s relationship with the Royal Windsor Horse Show in 2023, Stockdale said: “It’s a perfect partnership. There are so many similarities between what we as riders look for in a horse; dependability and trust to name and few, and what drivers look for in a car. I’ve learnt a lot from the Defender guides today.”
Ahead of the Show, Murray Paul, Director of Public Affairs, Jaguar Land Rover, said: “It was great to host both Joe Stockdale and Jack Whitaker in the lead up to Royal Windsor Horse Show, and to give them a chance to experience first-hand the Defender’s capability and innovation. We are extremely excited for Royal Windsor and delighted to continue our commitment to this world-renowned event.”