Pony once described by Fenland owner as a "fat lawnmower" wins UK title

PUBLISHED: 08:25 23 April 2010 | UPDATED: 09:37 02 June 2010

Pictures of Allen the pony, who has now won the national Indoor Horse Driving Trials.

Pictures of Allen the pony, who has now won the national Indoor Horse Driving Trials.

A PONY that was transformed from a fat lawnmower into a sports car has been crowned a national champion. After an uneventful start to life, Allen the pony seemed destined for a lazy future at Middleton Stables in Cross Drove, Tydd St Giles.

A PONY that was transformed from a "fat lawnmower into a sports car" has been crowned a national champion.

After an uneventful start to life, Allen the pony seemed destined for a lazy future at Middleton Stables in Cross Drove, Tydd St Giles.

But owner Amanda Valderas spotted his potential and trained him to be a top performing pony.

Despite sniggers about his portly shape from rivals, Allen shed the pounds and won the UK Indoor Horse Driving Trials (IHDT), held from April 9-11 in Bedfordshire.

Allen was led to victory by Ms Valderas, 33, and her team mate Joanne Goodale.

Ms Valderas said: "I am over the moon. It was a big, big surprise to win something so big. He left the rest of the competition standing.

"Everyone commented on just how good he was and couldn't believe how quick he was on the obstacle courses."

Before he became a star, Allen's tendency to sit around all day led to Ms Valderas giving him the nickname of "fat lawnmower".

However, he was soon dubbed a "sports car" after he proved himself to be agile and competitive when navigating tough circuits of cones and gates against the clock.

Ms Valderas promised to give Allen a few weeks off to bask in the glory of victory.

But she does not plan to let him go back to his old ways and will immediately train him to defend his crown at next year's finals.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Wisbech Standard. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Wisbech Standard