Kingston, December 13 - The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, today told Lydia Heywood, the English-born Eventing rider who plans to represent Jamaica at the next Olympics: “You can expect assistance from the Ministry as you make your preparations to represent us.”
The 21-year-old Heywood, who was first taken to Jamaica as a baby is on what is now her second visit. She met with Miss Grange at the Minister’s New Kingston offices today.
The Sport Minister assured Heywood that she would be making a number of approaches which should result in significant resources for her programme of preparation between now and 2020 when the Olympics will take place in Japan.
“We are thrilled that you have decided to represent Jamaica and we could do no less than to assist you to achieve your goals”, Miss Grange told Heywood.
Heywood, whose father hails from Clarendon, is accompanied on her visit by her mother Clare, who is English.
She said: “I started at 10 on my Eventing journey when I joined a pony club in Gloucestershire where we live and I have trained hard through the years to perfect each stage of Eventing which are dressage, show jumping and cross country.
“I know my drive for success will get me to my goal of winning Jamaica’s first Olympic equestrian medal.”
Minister Grange said, she wanted Heywood, who returns to England next Monday, to visit Jamaica soon again, “as we wish to put you out there to the Jamaican public.”
Eventing is an equestrian event where a single horse and rider combination compete against other combinations across the three disciplines of dressage, cross-country, and show jumping.