Posted: 9th September 2019 | Back to news feed

Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) is celebrating its 50th anniversary at a star-studded awards evening, recognising the outstanding achievements of riders, volunteers and horses. Host Clare Balding will be joined by ITN news anchor and journalist Alastair Stewart; motor racing legend Damon Hill; W Series’ British racing driver Alice Powell and celebrity auctioneer Philip Serrell for a night of celebration and fundraising.

Each year the RDA Gala Awards celebrates the achievements of its riders and carriage drivers, and the outstanding contribution made by its volunteers and horses. In this milestone year for RDA, the 2019 awards will be extra special.  As RDA celebrates 50 years as a leader in disability sport, Damon Hill will be joining Alastair Stewart on stage to talk about the vital role sport can play in shaping lives.

damon hill suports RDA awards

“I’m delighted to be attending the RDA Gala Awards evening,” says 1996 Formula 1 World Champion Damon Hill. “It’s a fantastic charity that currently enhances the lives of more than 25,000 disabled adults and children, so I’m really looking forward to finding out more about it and to meeting some of the people with and for whom it does so much excellent work.”

Alice Powell, a star of W Series, the new single-seater motor racing championship for female drivers only and the winner of the W Series ‘Brand Finale’ race at Brands Hatch, Kent, in August, adds: “As someone who thrives on high-speed competition, I’m inspired and impressed by the work that RDA does for disabled people, harnessing – literally – the athleticism of horses in order to add mobility and empowerment to thousands of disabled people’s lives. I’m really looking forward to attending the RDA Gala Awards evening therefore.”

Alice Powell supports RDA awards

“The RDA Gala Awards is always an emotional and thought-provoking evening,” says long time RDA supporter Clare Balding, whose latest book, The Racehorse Who Learned to Dance, features a disabled girl who rebuilds her life through riding. “This year’s event will be a great opportunity, not just to celebrate everyone involved today, but also to reflect on the many thousands of people who have benefited over the years – and to the volunteers and horses who have given so much.”

RDA is dedicated to improving the lives of people with disabilities through horse riding and carriage driving and today supports over 25,000 children and adults all over the UK. Awards will be presented to the RDA Rider of the Year, Volunteer and Young Volunteer of the Year, and RDA Horse of the Year.

The RDA Gala Awards 2019 is on 2 October at Drapers’ Hall, Throgmorton Avenue, London EC2N 2DQ. Tickets and more information from Sal Atkinson, satkinson@rda.org.uk. The awards are kindly supported by Childs Farm, players of People’s Postcode Lottery and Snuggy Hoods.

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