Hector Payne is a 28 year old event rider currently based at Redhouse Farm, just outside Clanville, near Andover, at his own private competition yard.
After Hector's time in Yorkshire with the Woodheads, he made the final step towards going ‘solo’, relocating to his own yard in Hampshire with his team of horses. Previously Hector has worked, whether it be long or short term, for The Billy Stud, home to Pippa and William Funnell, for Mark and Tanya Kyle, Matt and Millia Lanni, and most recently, he spent three seasons based at Fox-Pitt eventing.
Hector has been riding since a very young age, and eventing for well over a decade. His brother, Fergus, also used to event, so horses and competitiveness runs in the family. Hector had many early successes, starting during his time in the Puckeridge Pony Club. He competed at the Pony Club Open Championships aged only 13 and following this, he began affiliated eventing in 2006. Hector competed in the Junior and Young Rider programmes and trials through British Eventing, being longlisted on a number of occasions for the British team. In 2010 Hector and his top horse at the time were shortlisted for the Young Rider Europeans at Blair Castle, however a devastating injury to Jake in team training meant they were unable to compete.
Prior to Hector’s growing eventing career, he studied a degree in Sport and Social Sciences at Bath University, before returning to focus on horses full time. During his time at Bath, Hector represented both the University and Great Britain in the Student Rider Nations Cup competitions, winning individual silver medals in Belgium on two separate occasions, as well as an array of team medals. After the culmination of his degree, Hector, who is originally from Arkesden near Cambridge, made the decision to stay in the South West and base with William Fox-Pitt.
During his time with William, Hector gained a wealth of experience into the lost art of equine fitness and management, a major contributing factor that lead to William’s multiple four star wins and long stints as the World’s number one event rider. After WIlliam’s accident, Hector was credited with playing an integral role in the running of the yard and William’s recovery, helping towards his eventual selection for the Rio Olympics. The experience and encouragement Hector received gave him the confidence to make the move towards setting up on his own and he will be forever thankful for the opportunities he was given at Fox-Pitt Eventing.
To date Hector’s career highlight came at Bramham British U25 Championships in 2014 where he partnered Blue Moonshine to a podium finish of 3rd place in both the horses and his first CCI*** (now 4*L). Other highlights include Hector's first international win in 2018 aboard Top Biats and finishing 8th in the CCI*** (now 4*L) at Tattersalls with Dynasty. Hector made his 5* debut at Burghley with Dynasty, of whom was then a 10 year old, in 2018. The pair also competed at Pau in the 5* at the end of 2020 after missing out on Badminton due to its pandemic related cancellation. 2020 saw many of the younger horses moving up the levels, as well as gaining some exciting new rides. 2021 will hopefully see a number of horses stepping up to 4* level, as well as the aim of a trip to Badminton 5* with Dynasty - watch this space!
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