Born, Huddersfield, Yorkshire.
“I feel lucky with the lovely horses I have and the support and encouragement from my family, friends and my fantastic sponsors and owners. As a team we are focused on the details required to succeed at the highest level.”
Ellen is one of the most recognised names in the world of equestrianism. She is a member of the world-famous Whitaker dynasty, fitting in the family tree as the eldest daughter of Carole and Steven Whitaker. She grew up in Yorkshire with her parents and three younger brothers Joe, Thomas and Donald. She started competing at the age of 5 and over the years has progressed through the ranks of her sport, gaining a huge following and becoming a household name in the showjumping world.
Ellen has numerous prestigious wins and accomplishments to her name, through the ranks from ponies, juniors and young riders until she was performing at the highest level of the sport, aged just 19.
Ellen has competed for Team GB in 6 European Championships bringing home 3 Championship medals. This, together with an impressive record of wins in Grand Prix, Nations Cups, Derby’s, Speed Classes and Puissance, has proved time and time again, what a determined and versatile rider she is.
Ellen has many highlights to her career, but jumping three clear rounds at the European Championships in Mannheim (GER) which qualified Team GB for the Beijing Olympics and winning team Bronze with her two uncles on the same team is going to be hard to top!
Ellen has two sons Harry Steven Marinas Whitaker and Frankie Thomas Marinas Whitaker.
“Having children has been the greatest gift and the greatest challenge, and I am happy and grateful for every moment of it. I am lucky to have a lot of support from my family and a great team of staff to enable me to balance being a mum and an elite sportswoman”
Ellen lives by the motto “winners are not those who never fail, but those who never quit.” She is extremely grounded and has Olympic ambition. Show jumping is a perfectionists’ sport. A sport where men and women compete on equal terms. It’s elegant and classical as well as fast, furious and exciting!
- Representing Team GB in 2 European Championships, San Patrigano (ITA), age just 19 and Mannheim (GER) where she helped her famous uncles John and Michael bring home Bronze by jumping 3 clear rounds on Locarno 62 and qualifying Team GB for the Beijing Olympics.
- When she was 18, she made headlines after finishing 2nd in the infamous Hickstead Derby on Locarno 62 who was only 8 at the time, being just pipped to the post by her uncle John Whitaker .
- She has won the Hickstead Speed Derby twice. Both times partnered by Henri de Herne.
- Ellen has won the Horse of the Year Show Grand Prix, The British Open and Linz CSIO 5* amongst many others on Ocolado. She has also won the Speed Horse of the Year at the famous HOYS 4 times.
- She first competed at the famous London Olympia Horse Show in the under 25 final at only 13 aboard Jaspers Gold. When Ellen was 16 she qualified once again, winning the only qualifier at Addington Manor. This time, competing there amongst the world’s best on Kanselier.
- You may well remember the thrills Ellen gave us in the ever-popular puissance classes on the spirited and sassy Ladina B. She clocked up wins with her at Olympia, HOYS, Madrid and many more, clearing a spectacular 7ft1 (2m16).