Stephanie DeWitt chats with Will & Olli Fletcher

Is there any sibling rivalry between you?

Will: We're quite good together really.  We always want each other to do well.  Although Olli was a bit sulky after the South of England Show when I won the class and he posted a faster time than me but took the last fence down to take third place!

Olli: In every competition we want to beat each other!  But if I don't win I always want my brother to win.

 

Did you (do you) enjoy school?

Will: Yes, I went to both a private school and a state school and made a lot of friends at both.  Even some who aren't at all interested in horses support me.  One friend travelled all the way to Fontainebleau to watch me and by the end of the week he was even walking distances with me!

Olli: I'm still at school, doing my GCSE's next year.  The school allows me to take some time off for competitions but I normally ride before and after school.

 

What were (are) your best subjects?

Will: I came out with two A's in economics and business studies at A-level.

Olli: I love drama and also business studies.

 

What have you learned from your parents?

Will: Too much!  They are very different. Mum taught me to pay attention to detail.  She is very pernickety and has everything down to a fine line.  From Dad I learned his insight into courses and his show planning.  His horsemanship is incredible.  There's a happy medium between the two of them.

Olli: Everything they say I take in.  But the main thing is that nothing comes easy.

 

Do you hope to make showjumping your career?

Will: Hopefully, I'd love to.  But it's a hard sport.  My Dad has been brilliant in supporting both of us. The horses I have now I have produced since they were six or seven.  We stopped breeding a few years ago.  The last few we've had used to be eventers.  Olli's horse jumped 3* and mine had competed at the Europeans.  

Olli: I would love to, that's my dream!

 

What do you like to do in your spare time?

Will: My girlfriend Poppy takes up a lot of my time.  We are based near Lambourne so I enjoy going to the races.  I support Reading FC and love playing football.  Dad likes to think I could have been a footballer instead of a showjumper!

Olli:  I played football with the Arsenal development team in goal, but I had to give that up.  I like to relax and watch TV.  My favourite boxsets are Peaky Blinders, Lethal Weapon and Friends.

 

What is your favourite food?

Will: A good breakfast!  Dad's cooking is fantastic!

Olli: A good breakfast, too, but also Christmas dinner.

 

Where would you like to go on holiday?

Will: Somewhere relaxing!  But I also love skiing - we went skiing in Bulgaria last year.

Olli: I would like to go and jump at Aachen!  That would be a great holiday for me!

 

What are your greatest ambitions?

Will: My greatest ambition would be to compete at the Olympics!  But for the next five years I'd like to be included in a Nations Cup team and compete for the King George V Trophy.

Olli: I just want to carry on with what I've been doing.  I love the pressure of jumping in a team.

 

Where do you see yourself in ten years' time?

Will: Enjoying life as much as I am now!

Olli: Also to be doing what I'm doing now, to keep taking the steps that I've been taking.

William and Oliver Fletcher

William and Oliver Fletcher

Photo by Pippa DeWitt

William and Oliver Fletcher

Photo by Pippa DeWitt