A British Carriagedriving Council member from Dalry, Ayrshire has been awarded a lifetime achievement award (Saturday 1 June 2019).

Ian Gilbert, who is nearing 80 and is married with 2 sons, was recognised for his years of dedication and commitment during a carriagedriving event held at Hopetoun Estate by kind permission of the Marquess of Linlithgow Adrian Hope and the Earl and Countess of Hopetoun. Despite his ‘young’ age Ian still competes himself.

He has been a major driving force behind Scottish carriage driving and has been instrumental in Hopetoun spanning 2 decades when he was course designer when the event was staged for the first time. And the love of the sport runs in the family as his wife Ann was a competitor back then and has also been a National Pony tandem champion.

Carriagedriving is a form of competitive horse driving in harness in which larger two or four wheeled carriages (often restored antiques) are pulled by a single horse, a pair, tandem or a four-in-hand team.

Ian has served on the British Carriagedriving Council for over 12 years and during that time has been instrumental in the delivery of many initiatives including the Hopetoun ‘A Team’; the group responsible for setting up almost all major events in Scotland. Most recently he has spent a considerable amount of time holding the prestigious role of Chair of the Competitions Committee.

Ian was initially presented with a beautiful short run book on harnesses during the ceremony but thanks to the legal eyes of the council’s chairman Chris Smith QC, a more apt recognition has been awarded to properly thank him for all he has done for the sport.

Chris said on the night: “A book was not enough.  But help was at hand in article 25.3 of the British Carriagedriving articles of association.  Only a lawyer like me would look in the articles of association for the answer to a problem, but in accordance with the power set out in article 25.3, it gives me great pleasure to announce that the council has unanimously elected Ian Gilbert as an Honourary Vice President of British Carriagedriving for life – with immediate effect.”

Ian Gilbert said: “I am absolutely thrilled to have been awarded the title of Honourary Vice President for life. I spend most of my days one way or another involved in the sport and would like to thank the council for such recognition, and I look forward to seeing the next generation achieve their potential through our continued help and support.”