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Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Goodnight, Mick: remaining farewell to Olympic showjumper

  • By Louise and Andrew Saywell

    Former British crew member and 1972 Olympian Michael (Mick) Saywell handed away peacefully on 2 April aged 80 together with his household at his aspect.

    As a baby Mick spent most of his time at his grandparents’ farm close to RAF Swinderby. His grandfather William Wagstaffe had been within the yeomanry and was an achieved horseman who performed an enormous half in Mick’s childhood within the equine world. Mick’s ardour was to trip, firstly ponies, then horses; he attended native gymkhanas and unaffiliated exhibits. Within the early Nineteen Sixties Stonepark was the primary horse to take Mick to the Horse of the Yr Present (HOYS). His expertise took him to the Ewerby yard of John (Jet) Taylor, which led to success on quite a few horses. The British selectors began noticing this self-made Lincolnshire lad!

    Within the Seventies Mick’s well-known affiliation with Trevor Banks started. The Banky expertise is effectively documented with British crew locations in ’s-Hertogenbosch, Dublin, La Baule and Munich. Mick equipped the perfect British rating for the crew on the 1972 Munich Olympics with Hideaway; alongside David Broome, Harvey Smith and Ann Moore. The crew completed simply outdoors the medals in fourth. David mentioned Mick “had an incredible sense of humour and when issues bought robust within the crew, he was the joker that broke the strain and saved the peace. He was a really proficient jockey too”.

    Mick introduced the household, Kathy, Nicky, and Andrew, to Jet’s yard and the stud a part of the operation began with 20 broodmares, and stallions.

    Mick returned to Banky’s Bishop Burton yard and extra prolific wins adopted. It was the eye-catching gray Chainbridge who took him to victory within the King George V Gold Cup at HOYS, in addition to successful the silver spur main rider title and the 1978 Dublin Grand Prix. The King George win impressed 12-year-old Tim Stockdale to take up showjumping and he begged his hero for a job, flourishing underneath Mick’s steering.

    Mick and his second spouse Vicky moved to Cottam in Nottinghamshire the place they arrange their yard. Mick rode for various homeowners throughout this time in addition to teaching many up-and-coming riders. The yard full of ponies once more, for twins Louise and Harry, then horses. Harry most popular motorbikes so Mick was usually seen stewarding at motorcycle competitions.

    Mick loved searching with many packs. He earnt his hunt buttons by leaping a double of railway gates and repeatedly rode as second whipper-in for the Blankney Hunt. Mick’s showjumpers actually had an all-round training. In his youthful days he additionally had just a few rides point-to-pointing.

    An avid follower of son Andrew, daughter Louise and grandchildren Jake and Isabel’s careers in his sport saved Mick energetic in his later years. He was a daily within the area of his Nottinghamshire house or on the ringside with beneficial recommendation and insights to the very finish.

    Condolences to his spouse Vicky, youngsters Nicky, Andrew, Louise, Harry, eight grandchildren and one great-granddaughter.  Goodnight Mick. RIP. You can be sorely missed.

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