Sophie Christiansen OBE
A school trip to her local RDA centre in South Buckinghamshire first inspired Sophie to start riding when she was six years old and she made her third Games appearance at London 2012.
- Grade Ia
- Home Town:
- Ascot, Berkshire
- Maidenhead, Berkshire
- South Bucks RDA
- Date Of Birth:
- 4th November 1987
- Games Attended:
- London 12, Beijing 08, Athens 04
Ten years after that first trip to her local RDA, Sophie made her first appearance at a major international competition at the 2004 Athens Paralympic Games, where, riding Hotstuff, she won an individual bronze medal. That same year, she was also voted BBC London Disabled Athlete of the Year.
In 2008, Sophie made her second Games appearance for ParalympicsGB. In Beijing, she won two gold medals and a silver riding Lambrusco III, That same year, she was awarded the Vivien Batchelor Trophy for the most outstanding rider under 25 by the British Equestrian Writers’ Association, as well as the Raymond Brooks-Ward Memorial Trophy - which is awarded to the most promising rider under 25 in Eventing, Dressage and Showjumping.
At London 2012, Sophie feted her third Paralympic Games by winning three gold medals, in the Team, Individual and Freestyle events. In the Team event, she triumphed alongside Lee Pearson, Deb Criddle and Sophie Wells to take gold, while in the Freestyle, her final event of the Games, she scored 84.75%, a personal best and Paralympic record. In doing so, she became the first British athlete to claim three gold medals at London 2012 and helped the British Equestrian team to surpass their Beijing medal tally, with 11 medals to their credit.
Sophie was awarded an MBE in the 2009 New Year's Honours List for services to disabled sport. In the 2013 New Year's Honours, she received an OBE.
Aside from her riding career, Sophie used to compete in half-marathons and won the Windsor half-marathon in a Wheelchair Race in 2002. In 2012, she was awarded a Masters degree in Maths from Royal Holloway University and she currently works part-time as a statistician.
- 2012 London Paralympic Games
Individual (Ia): gold
Freestyle (Ia): gold (all with Janeiro 6)
- 2008 Beijing Paralympic Games
Individual (la): silver
Freestyle (la): gold (all with Lambrusco III)
- 2004 Athens Paralympic Games
- Individual (l): bronze (all with Hotstuff)
- 2010 World Equestrian Games, Kentucky, USA
Individual (Ia): gold
Individual Freestyle (Ia): silver (all with Rivaldo of Berkeley)
- 2009 European Championships, Kristiansand, Norway
Individual (la): gold
Individual Freestyle (la): silver