Charlotte Dujardin reveals mother refused to undergo surgery until she finished event

  • Watch Cari Davies' report

Britain’s most decorated female Olympian has revealed that her Mum delayed an operation to watch her most recent medal winning performance. 

Gloucestershire dressage rider Charlotte Dujardin added individual and team bronze to her collection in Tokyo, surpassing rower Dame Katherine Grainger and taking her tally to six. 

She and her previous partner Valegro, known as ‘the dancing horse’, trained in Newent and became household names after winning double gold at London 2012.

They went onto win gold and silver in 2016.

Valegro retired after Rio and in Tokyo it was horse Gio, nicknamed Pumpkin, who took to the floor with Charlotte and surprised her with a medal-winning performance.  

She said: "Taking my new dance partner Gio, a very inexperienced, a very young horse. The medals felt like gold."

But since arriving back in the UK, Charlotte revealed that her mum refused to undergo surgery in hospital until she had finished her event.

Showing her medals to her mum in hospital, Charlotte says her Mum told doctors: "You can’t do anything until I’ve watched my daughter compete."

Charlotte wearing her medals with partners Valegro and Gio, after coming back from the Tokyo 2020 Olympic games.

"It was incredible because all the staff there had watched me competing with my Mum and they’d been very supportive so that was fantastic that they all saw my medals as well."

Charlotte also added: "Thankfully she’s all fit and well and making a speedy recovery." 

She says her Dad has been buying all the newspapers that have feature her in articles.

He told her: "I sat there and read them all and I needed a whole box of tissues as I was reading it. I’m so proud of you."

Charlotte has been based at the yard of Carl Hester in Newent since 2007 and the pair have both been on Team GB’s dressage team for the last three Olympics. 

Carl says: "14 years ago Charlotte came to ride with me and she had never competed at Grand Prix level before.

"Here we are 14 years later and Charlotte is quite simply the best rider in the world."

Charlotte's coach Carl Hester with horse and partner, En Vogue.

Both Charlotte’s horse Gio and Carl’s horse En Vogue were relatively young and inexperienced for Tokyo.

But that gives the pair confidence that they can win more medals at the next Olympics in Paris 2024.

Charlotte said she's "so excited", before adding "I know that these medals might be bronze now but in three years time they’ll definitely be a different colour.”