Nottingham

Riders compete in National Horseboarding Championships

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Media captionRiders compete in National Horseboarding Championships

Riders are saddling up to compete in a sport that combines horse-riding and skateboarding in the National Horseboarding Championships.

The pursuit sees competitors towed at 20-30mph and "crash after crash".

Horseboarding is the brainchild of "extreme horse-rider" Daniel Fowler-Prime, and has rapidly grown in popularity over the past 10 years.

The event is taking place at Thoresby Country Show in Nottinghamshire over the weekend.

Image copyright Joe Beasant
Image caption The rider of the horse must be in total control of the horse in order to maintain correct speed, position and acceleration to keep the board rider stable

The sport involves standing on a mountainboard - which is similar to a skateboard - and holding on to a handle which is attached to a horse's saddle with a small harness. It has more than 40 registered teams across the UK.

Mr Fowler-Prime, from Ravenshead, Nottinghamshire, said the sport was rooted in one impulsive act which took place in 2004.

After training some horses for a friend, Mr Fowler-Prime watched his friend tie a rope to the back of a car, climb on to a mountain board and race around a field.

That had Mr Fowler-Prime "turning ideas over in his mind", and, with the help of his brother Tom Kilroy, horseboarding was created.

Image copyright Daniel Fowler-Prime
Image caption Daniel Fowler-Prime (left) has also helped to promote horse-surfing

"It's great entertainment because there's a high possibility the board rider will fall and everybody likes to see that," Mr Fowler-Prime said.

"It's just crash after crash after crash.

"If the board rider completes four out of six runs, that's good going."

Image copyright Joe Beasant
Image caption The board-rider must be able to constantly read and interpret the speed and position of the horse in order to stay upright

Mr Fowler-Prime, whose background is in stunts for film and television, previously organised a combined horseboarding and horse-surfing competition in Skegness in 2008, but decided to concentrate on horseboarding as it is more accessible.

He said there has been a lot of interest from people in other countries who have heard about the sport online. He is due to go to Spain later this year to set up a training centre there.

"Worldwide there's a massive amount of interest in what we are doing," he said.

Image copyright Joe Beasant
Image caption In arena horseboarding, teams negotiate a series of "gates" around a complex twisting course

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