Banned from competing in dressage by officials, Wallace the mule was left with an understandably long face.
But his rider Christie Mclean has a streak of stubbornness and refused to take No for an answer.
And after she publicised Wallace’s plight last week there was a wave of support for her 11-year-old mount.
He was initially refused entry on the grounds that he is not a horse. A mule is the offspring of a male donkey and a female horse. But British Dressage has now ‘harmonised’ its rules with those of international body, the Federation Equestre Internationale, which simply defines a horse as ‘born of a mare’.
Chief executive Jason Brautigam said: ‘We are delighted to welcome Wallace and his fellow mules to compete as part of our commitment to inclusion and diversity in dressage.’
Miss Mclean, 31, from Stroud, Gloucestershire is delighted. So are supporters on social media. One wrote: ‘Brilliant. Sooooo very wrong to discriminate against those with long ears.’
Olympic gold medallist Laura Tomlinsonwas also thrilled. ‘Anything that makes dressage more accessible and inclusive is brilliant.’
A LOVELY VIDEO INTERVIEW…
Click here to watch this sweet video of Wallace and his owner.
HERE IS MULE IN A US DRESSAGE COMPETITION (not Wallace, but interesting)
Click here to watch the video.