Inspirational Gayle targets dream Rio spot

Paralympic coach Cathy Burrell with Gayle Bloomfield from Seahouses at the launch of the Bringing The Games Closer Olympic Legacy Project launch at the Pegasus Centre at Tranwell.
Paralympic coach Cathy Burrell with Gayle Bloomfield from Seahouses at the launch of the Bringing The Games Closer Olympic Legacy Project launch at the Pegasus Centre at Tranwell.

When Gayle Bloomfield was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2006, she assumed that her permanent disability would prevent her from ever riding a horse again.

But six years on, and the inspirational Seahouses mother-of-two is setting her sights on a dream spot in the 2016 Paralympic Games in Brazil. And who would bet against the talented para-dressage rider?

Shortly after her diagnosis, she was convinced to ride again by a friend.

Gayle regularly attends the Pegasus Centre riding school in Tranwell, near Morpeth, and the 41-year-old has gone on to become a national para-dressage champion.

And she admits she is ready to fight for a spot at the Games in Rio de Janeiro .

She said: “My horse Bartie and I have achieved so much in such a short time and I am more determined than ever to get where I want to be on the British team to compete in Rio in 2016.

“As my initials are GB, I think that’s a good omen.”

Earlier this month, she was crowned the winner in the Sporting Achievement of the Year category in the Pride of Northumberland Awards.

She is also the current holder of the Northumberland Gazette’s Sports Personality of the Year award.

Martin Peagam, manager at the Pegasus Centre, said: “Gayle is an inspiration to many and is a marvellous example of what can be achieved with a lot of determination and ambition.

“We will back her all the way in her dream to get to Rio.”