The Guinness Book of Records has added a new equestrian category to its list: world’s oldest equestrian vaulter. Set to appear in the 2024 edition, Maureen “Mo” Fitzgerald, who is from South Africa, earned her title after competing in the seniors’ category at the 2021 Gauteng Vaulting Championships at the age of 77 years and 175 days old.
The former dancer and gymnastics champion began equestrian vaulting when she was 74 and had zero prior horse riding experience. Fast-forward to now and she is able to perform a shoulder stand, an arabesque, a scissor change and a forward roll dismount off her horse. “I still have very good balance and love horses. I wanted to do something that was challenging and I did not need my legs too much for. I am very strong still and started doing this as a way to keep fit,” Fitzgerald told the folks at Guinness.
“As equine vaulting or horse vaulting is almost like gymnastics and ballet on the horses, I found the transition relatively easy after having years of gymnastics and ballet experience.”
You go, Mo!