A NORTH Yorkshire eventer has been named leading rider for 2017 by the British Equestrian Writers’ Association (BEWA).

Nicola Wilson had a year to remember as she helped Great Britain win team gold at the European Championships in Poland alongside Tina Cook, Ros Canter and Oliver Townend.

Olympic medal winner Wilson also finished third individually, and then climbed to world number two behind Germany’s multiple Olympic, World and European champion Michael Jung.

She was presented with the BEWA trophy at an awards lunch in central London, landing an award that was won 12 months ago by reigning Olympic individual showjumping champion Nick Skelton.

The award comes just a month after she won Professional Rider of The Year Award at the Horse and Hound Awards in November, which she described as “overwhelming”.

“I am grateful to everyone who has made it possible, it is a huge team effort,” she said in a statement.

At the BEWA ceremony, the Worshipful Company of Saddlers’ Award for the most promising rider aged under 25 went to European junior eventing champion Bubby Upton, while Wiltshire-based New Zealander Andrew Nicholson’s

victory at the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials - after recovering from a broken neck - was named moment of the year.

And BEWA’s lifetime achievement award was presented to commentator Mike Tucker, who hung up his microphone following Badminton in May after 40 years with the BBC - the last 25 of those as their lead equestrian commentator. The British Equestrian Writers’ Association was conceived during the 1973 Rome horse show, when current president Alan Smith, Brian Giles and the late Ron Wills felt it might be a good idea to bring those who covered equestrian sport into a cohesive