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Athlete Profile

Louise Duncan

Louise is a light-skinned woman in her 30s. She rests her chin on her hands and leans on a wall, smiling. Her chestnut horse stands behind her.

Louise Duncan’s passion for horses began even before she could walk. Growing up in Carterton and Levin, she was surrounded by a family that adored horses, with her mother Frankie being an ESNZ Coach and FEI level rider, and her father Lloyd working as a farrier.

Louise life would take a different course when she contracted meningitis as a teenager. Surviving the illness was no small feat, and her journey to recovery was both physical and emotional. Despite doctors’ warnings that she wouldn’t walk again, never mind riding a horse, her determination to ride again became her guiding light as she navigated the adjustments to her new life.

Today, Louise copes with migraines if she trots for too long and experiences back pain from the lumbar puncture fusion. Occasionally, she finds it difficult to grip the reins and can have temporary paralysis due to mini-strokes.

As a dedicated rider competing in the grade IV category, Louise had a shot at qualifying for the Paralympic Team for Tokyo 2020. Unfortunately, COVID-19 restrictions led to the cancellation of qualifying events, making that path too hard. However, Louise has now been chosen to represent the team at Paris 2024.

In May 2023, Louise was named to the Para Sport Collective.

When she’s not with her horse Showcase BC, Louise can be found working at her hairdressing salon in Levin.

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