Precocious para equestrian ace Katie Radzik hopes to go from watching her hero star at the Tokyo Paralympics to competing alongside her at Paris 2024. 

The 32-year-old from Ashford cites grade five para dressage rider Sophie Wells as a key source of inspiration and has even had the opportunity to train with her. 

Wells, one year younger than Radzik, captured team gold and individual silver in Japan as she added to her four Paralympic medals – two gold, two silver – won at London 2012 and Rio 2016.

Radzik loved watching Wells take the big stage by storm and is relishing the prospect of following in her glittering Games footsteps.

She said: “My sporting heroes are Charlotte Dujardin in able-bodied dressage and Sophie Wells, grade five para-dressage – obviously all equestrians stars!

“I really enjoyed my lessons with Sophie and any opportunity I have, I take it with both hands. You just don’t turn it down because there's not many people that can say they've trained with a gold medallist.
“She’s a really good trainer and she's got a lot of experience – she's a very good horsewoman.  

“My aim is Paris 2024. Obviously to get on the Paralympic team is everybody's dream, so it's extremely hard work. I don't want to put all my eggs in one basket because it's a very tough competition and Britain only send the best, so you've got to be the best of your grade.

“It’s just about keeping going and maintaining good horse and para-athlete fitness. I will just keep going.  

“Whether I will get there I don’t know but I will certainly try my best!” 
Radzik’s burgeoning career is fuelled by an innovative partnership between Entain – owner of Ladbrokes and Coral – and leading sports charity SportsAid.

Hillingdon Times: Radzik cites Sophie Wells and Charlotte Dujardin as her sporting idols and has been riding ponies since she was threeRadzik cites Sophie Wells and Charlotte Dujardin as her sporting idols and has been riding ponies since she was three

As the equestrian events in Tokyo have continued to capture the imagination, Radzik hopes ParalympicsGB’s success can propel the popularity of the sport to new heights. 

“They're all very talented and they're amazing riders,” she added.
“I think everyone should watch the Paras to see how they control horses with their disability – it’s been amazing.”

One British rider who was unable to compete in Tokyo was eight-time Paralympic champion Sophie Christiansen, who was forced to withdraw due to a vet issue with her horse Innuendo III.

But Radzik, who knows 165 of the 227 members of the ParalympicsGB squad in Tokyo have also received financial support and recognition from SportsAid, reckons that has given the team’s other stars – like Wells – a crucial chance to shine.

She said: “Sophie’s won the gold medal for grade one and obviously like everyone, she was working towards Tokyo so I do feel sorry for her.
“But she’ll come out stronger and she's aiming towards Paris. 

“But also, I think it's been quite exciting that we have a new member of the Paralympic squad going out there, so it switched things up for Britain.  

“It’s given other people opportunities and showed people that other athletes are good in Great Britain.” 

Entain, owner of Ladbrokes and Coral, is proud to be championing the next generation of British sporting heroes by providing talented young athletes with financial support and personal development opportunities in partnership with SportsAid. Visit to find out more.