HANNAH Biggs, a leading dressage rider from Gillingham, is one of 10 talented equestrian athletes to be selected for the Olympic Ambition Programme – which identifies potential Olympic hopefuls of the future.

Created by the British Olympic Association (BOA), and run in partnership with Lloyds TSB, the programme gives 130 athletes and 56 coaches from across 44 sports the chance to experience the Games environment first hand, giving them the opportunity to mix and learn from past and present Olym-pians.

Biggs is already a member of the British Equestrian Feder-ations’ UK Sport funded World Class Development Prog-ramme, which works with talented riders to maximize their success.

The 33-year-old, who was also part of a Sporting Champions Parade that carried the Beijing Olympic Torch through Shaftesbury, said: “It’s great to get this recognition as a potential rider of the future. And it’s such an amazing opportunity to be in the heart of everything and to experience the whole of the Games.”

Biggs is also celebrating making her senior team debut at one of the world’s top competitions.

She was selected to represent Great Britain as part of the Nations Cup team taking part in the CDIO5* competition in Aachen, Germany.

Riding her own 13-year-old chestnut stallion Weltzin, Biggs put in a solid performance, scoring 67 per cent in the Grand Prix, which qualified them to take part in the Grand Prix Special, where they scored 65 per cent. Biggs added: “It’s always been an aim to be on a senior team – so to get the call-up and to go to Aachen was amazing.

“To compete against some of the world’s leading names in dressage – many of whom were using the event as a warm-up to London 2012 – was a fantastic experience.

“Weltzin coped really well with the atmosphere and pressure. “We made a few little mistakes, which brought our marks down, but I gained a huge amount of confidence from the judges’ scores and comments for the movements we performed well – we were actually awarded top marks when we got things right.

“All in all it fills me with great optimism for the future.”