Team Joynson: Karen and April Joynson

Horses for 2017

  • Bryntegllwynau Rocky Robin- 14.2hh, 9 year old Welsh part bred, April has trained Robin from a 4 year old ex-racing pony and is now competing him at PFEI test and Affiliated Elementary. He is the ultimate all-rounder and is fed on Blue Chip Original.
  • Alwin- 17.1hh, 11 year old Warmblood, Alwin is a Belgium ex-show jumper who has recently turned his hoof to dressage, he is currently competing at Affiliated Novice and Elementary, but April and owner Karen Bailey are producing him up to Medium. Alwin is also fed on Blue Chip Original, alongside Karma at the bigger events.
  • Frenchie- 17hh, 11 year old mare. Frenchie has competed up to Advanced Medium with her owner Catherine Workman, April is now training her at Advanced and hoping to qualify for some team events with her.

Best 2015 Results

  • April came 2nd in the Sheepgate U25’s National Championships semi-final out of 72 top riders and 3rd in the finals.
  • Karen Qualified for Area Festivals and Regional Championships in Dressage & Showing
  • Watching April & Robin develop into superstars in so many different disciplines and being selected to ride in county teams in British Dressage, British Showjumping, Riding Club, Pony club and School teams & qualifying for countless championships

2017 Goals

  • April would like to be placed in the top ten at the Inter-regionals with one of her horses.
  • She would like to continue competing in the JFEI test with Frenchie, in which she would like to keep improving on their scores in the hope to get selected for a team event in 2018.
  • April would also like to qualify all 3 horses for the Equine Area Regionals where she would love to get a top 10 placing with each horse.

Top Tips

  • Never Give Up – even when things seem to go wrong, you must believe “things happen for a reason” and normally lead to bigger and  better things
  • Live Every day like it’s your last
  • If you put the work in, anything is possible

Personal Highpoints

  • Watching April and Robin’s progress and feeling proud of their amazing achievements in so many different disciplines
  • April’s highlight was being selected for the home-international BYRDS England squad, being one of the youngest riders & the only rider selected with two horses. She also won the Badminton training bursary in 2014 for the ‘rider showing the greatest potential.’


Memorable Horses

  • Karen has so many ‘Special Horses’, but Bertie-Boo (Secret Avalanche), who they sadly lost last year, was a really special horse who helped so many riders achieve their dreams
  • April’s first pony Popcorn, a palomino 11.2hh Welsh Section B mare who taught her to love dressage, but also her current pony Rocky Robin, who taught her that you don’t have to have a expensive flashy pony to succeed- if you put the work and dedication in dreams really can come true.


“Blue Chip Feeds have helped all of my horses in different ways; from gaining condition to a healthy shiny coat. For our older horses Blue Chip Dynamic helps with mobility & performance”

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April’s July Update

April’s July Update

This month has been busy but very successful. It kicked off with the BYRDS inter-regionals, which was a 2 days competition where I came 6th individually in the B squad class. We then had a couple of weekends where I took Robin and Frenchie to some affiliated competitions, getting our points ready for regionals and area festivals next season. Robin has won all his classes to date (at elementary level), and Frenchie has be coming in the top 3 every time in her medium classes, which I’m obviously really pleased with. Robin and I had the most amazing weekend at Area- festivals in Wales. We won both classes- the novice and elementary championships. Robin felt amazing all weekend and I was over the moon to win not just one class, but both. This means we are through to second rounds which are in October. Robin is feeling on top form at the moment on his Blue Chip Balancer, I can’t recommend it enough! We’ve got a very busy couple of weeks a head with both Frenchie and Robin:- Friday 28th- medium affiliated competition with Frenchie, getting our last couple of points needed for area festivals. Wednesday 2nd- U21s show; where I’ll be participating in the advanced medium with Frenchie and the medium classes with Robin. Saturday 5th- Gatcombe Pony Club Show jumping with Robin. Sunday 6th- BD Regionals with... read more
April’s May 2017 Update

April’s May 2017 Update

My main competition in May was at the U21s camp where I participated in the PFEI test on Robin, which was our second ever go at it and we came home with 2nd place, which I was over the moon with. I also competed my newest ride ‘Frenchie’ in the JFEI test (advanced medium 92) where we came 4th. I was lucky enough to get the ride on Frenchie about 2 months ago, she has trained up to advanced medium and is a 17hh, 11 year old mare; owned by Catherine Workman. We are still getting to know each other and have only competed together 3 times, but she’s a very talented mare and I’m very lucky to have got this opportunity.   Mainly in May I went to affiliated competitions, as well as dressage to music qualifiers with Robin, Alwin and Frenchie to get our qualifications in ready for the Area Regionals. Robin and I were also lucky enough to be selected for the 3rd year running for the BYRDS Inter-regionals which is at the end of... read more
April Joynson October Update

April Joynson October Update

April has been in touch to let us know how she is getting on with her pony Robin this last month… ‘On the 2nd October Robin and I went to the riding club dressage to music national championships, we became reserve champions in the novice freestyle with 74+%. The weekend after that mum and I went to the regional MyQuest and Team Quest Championships, where Robin and I became Reserve MyQuest Elementary Champions, and we then went on to become Team Quest Regional Champions, qualifying us for the Nationals! On the 15th October I went and passed the riding section of my Pony Club B Test, and on the Sunday of that weekend we went away for a 3 day U21s dressage camp where I completed my first ever JFEI (Am92) test getting a score of 66%. I also got two personal best scores with Robin participating in the Elementary classes – getting two scores of above 70%, winning both classes as a result. This weekend we went away to the MyQuest and Team Quest National Finals. Robin and I became National Reserve Elementary Champions with a score of 68%, and I then went onto winning my open Elementary section with a score of 69%, helping the Team Quest team come 3rd in the finals.’ It sounds like April has had a brilliant month and this pair look set for big things – keep an eye out for further results from them over the winter at... read more
An exciting August for Team Joynson

An exciting August for Team Joynson

It has been a busy month for Karen and April Joynson and they have been in touch to tell us about their successes throughout July and August and what is to come this September… Karen tells us, ‘July was full on with the British Dressage BYRDS Inter-Regionals and then waiting for them to hear if they were selected for the England team was nail biting! In the meantime, April also took part in the Badminton Dressage Championships and finished with fab results, and to top it off we then found out April and Robin were selected to ride on the team, with her taking Elegance as a reserve! April and both horses were chosen to ride at the Under 25’s Sheepgate BYRDS Team Championships at both Novice and Elementary level and they also took part in the Novice National Under 25’s Championships, where out of 90 riders, April came 5th & went through to the finals.’ Aside from dressage, April and Robin took part in the National Riding Club Style Show Jumping Championships which were held at Hartpury College, where they came Individual 5th 2nd with the team. Also, their stallion, Rooks Corker, also went to his first show and behaved impeccably, coming home with two second place rosettes. The month ahead brings plenty of excitement for Team Joynson, with April and Ellie competing together at in Novice and Elementary Classes at the PetPlan Equine Area Festivals, and also Robin will be entered into the Riding Club National Dressage to Music Championships, having qualified in Novice and Elementary. Also, after qualifying both Robin and Jim for the Elementary BYRDS... read more
BYRDS Selection for April!

BYRDS Selection for April!

It has been announced that April Joynson has been selected to ride on the BYRDS England Squad with her horse Robin and also as a reserve with Ellie! As well as having two BD England team riders, Team Joynson has several pupils being selected for the teams too – what a great job they are doing! For more updates, visit and visit Karen’s website... read more
Karen at British Dressage

Karen at British Dressage

“This past month has been a whirlwind. I was selected as a reserve rider for the England team but sadly Lloyd has not been going so well, resulting in an unfortunate months’ box rest. April on the other hand has had an amazing time. Her new young horse Champers is coming along nicely. Robin and April are now part of the Pegusus Pink Ponies Team Quest team & have won their last three competitions. The team is now qualified for the regional championships this weekend. We were then away at the British Dressage U25’s national championships in Lincolnshire. In their first class of 75 they were 4th, in the second class of 50 they were 6th, in the prelim semi-final out of 118 riders they were 2nd and in the National Prelim Final they were in the lead until the last two riders, but came 3rd. I was so proud of both of them, to have done so well, competing against top England & Great Britain Team riders & some very expensive horses. I competed my other horse Jim at a recent BD competition and he did me proud coming 2nd, only being beaten by April &... read more
July Update from Karen

July Update from Karen

“Well this month’s update and what a totally manic month it’s been.  Lloyd and I managed to get out to do a Novice & Elementary and start working towards are regional qualification. He has had to go on the back burner as April & Robin have been so busy competing.  April & Robin did a ridden showing show where they won two 1st’s & two 2nd’s qualifying for the SWPA championships in September. They then competed at the Badminton Dressage Championships for the pony club where they won. In the evening April & Robin performed at the invitation only gala evening national BYRDS finals where they came 3rd. Yesterday April & Robin went to their first BD regional’s where they came 9th. Sadly a costly spook in the free walk with a pony eating bush. We have been busy at the new yard with holiday schooling livery and over August we have the Sheepgate under 25’s dressage championships & various showing shows.  We have also a new member of the team ‘Rooks Champers’ 15.2hh 5yrs chestnut mare TB x German rheit pony & April has been offered the ride on my friends advanced dressage horse aiming for FEI teams next year so all very exciting.”... read more

An update from the busy Team Joynson!

“It’s been busy here for Team Joynson.  April and Robin have been selected by British Show Jumping to ride for Gloucestershire Junior Academy.  They competed at the Royal Bath & West show where her team came 4th.  Then to top it off British Dressage have selected April to represent the South West Region at the BYRDS championships at Keysoe at the end of June. They have also been asked to ride at the National U25 Dressage Championships & qualified for both the regionals and area festivals. This weekend we will be away at the Three Counties show where they will be doing the working hunters HOYS qualifier.  Lloydy and I have had to go in the back burner whilst my mum isn’t well. Lloyd has qualified for the Petplan Area festivals at Novice and Elementary and I stupidly miscalculated my regional qualification by 1 point! Sadly BD take such a long time to put up your results it was too late to fit in another show with the cut-off date.  We have been improving Lloyd’s working in the double-bridle which has helped with his... read more