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Equestrian Athlete Paige Lockton to Retire from International Competition

Lockton & Speed Axcel CCI** Bromont 2001
After competing in three day eventing for more than 15 years, equestrian athlete Paige Lockton of Callander, ON, is announcing her retirement from the international level of the sport.

Lockton has spent much of the past two years training and competing in the United States in the hopes of earning a berth on the Canadian Eventing Team (CET) for the 2002 World Equestrian Games and ultimately the 2004 Olympics. During this time, she earned impressive results, including a sixteenth place finish at Maryland’s Fair Hill CCI*** in October 2001, which lead to her shortlisted status with the CET. Although close to achieving her goals, Lockton is stepping back from her riding career in order to spend more time with her family, including six-year-old son, Zack.

“I was home all summer with my fiancé and with Zack, and it made a huge difference, it really helped to solidify my decision,” said Lockton, 32. “I looked at all of the obstacles that you have to overcome to excel in this sport, and then compared it to the challenge of parenting, which I take very seriously. I want to make sure I have a solid relationship with my son. Even an Olympic gold medal wouldn’t replace that.”

Lockton & Speed Axcel 2001 CCI*** Fair Hill
In 1999, Lockton put a plan into motion that would help her achieve her goals of competing at the 2002 World Equestrian Games and the 2004 Olympic Games. Through a process of buying, training and selling horses, Lockton was searching for an equine partner capable of competing on the world stage. In Speed Axcel, a 14-year-old Canadian thoroughbred mare, she found an international calibre partner, but recently made the tough decision to retire the feisty mare due to arthritis.

With an international career behind her, Lockton will now focus on running her business, Lockton Farms Summer Camps, which she started in 1997 on her parents’ farm. Camps are offered for riders from the Entry to Advanced level; as well as event preparation camps where riders train for an upcoming event, then participate in the competition coached by Lockton. In addition to the camps, she will continue training and developing horses for resale and competing up to the Advanced level.

“This is what is best for me and for my family,” explains Lockton, who will wed Alex B. Wilde of North Bay, ON, next summer. “Retiring from international competition will allow me to be home more and focus on my business, something I could not do on the road. I am also excited to be starting a new family and look forward to playing a part in this Northern community I love so much.”

Lockton & Speed Axcel 2001 CCI*** Fair Hill
Lockton, whose parents both enjoy a background in the horse industry, first began riding competitively at the age of six through the North Bay Pony Club. She has trained with such notable riders as Edie Tarves and Nick Holmes-Smith, both Canadian Olympians, as well as former Canadian Eventing Team Coaches Colonel Michael Gutowski, Jack LeGoff and Peter Gray, and the current Team Coach, Jimmy Wofford. For three consecutive years, 1987-1989, Lockton and her horse, O’Reilly, competed at the North American Young Riders’ Championship for riders aged 16-21, bringing home a team bronze medal in 1989. In 1991, the pair completed the CCI*** Checkmate Three Day Event and were the alternates for the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, Spain.

To celebrate her achievements in the sport and to thank the family, friends and community that have supported her career, Lockton will be hosting a retirement party at her new home in Callander, ON.

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