It’s been almost exactly a month since Canada’s Hawley Bennett-Awad was thrown violently from her horse Gin & Juice during the cross-country phase of the three-day event competition at the Summer Olympic Games in London, England.

The fall was so serious that Bennett-Awad suffered a concussion and a fractured sacral bone in her pelvis, and had to be taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital. Needless to say, Bennett-Awad’s Olympics were over.

“It certainly didn’t go the way that I had planned. I am a very competitive person, so I was hugely disappointed at the time,” stated Bennett-Awad in an interview this past week at the Dot Ranch, 30 km west of Merritt, where she was instructing at a BC Young Riders Camp.

Making the accident and subsequent injuries all the harder to accept was the fact that Bennett-Awad had achieved her best dressage score ever in international competition the day before, and was sitting a solid 31st. overall in the standings going into the final two phases of the competition.

It is a testimony to Bennett-Awad’s courage and loyalty to her sport that she honored the commitment she made many months ago to come and coach at the three-day camp at Lynne and Jens Larsen’s Dot Ranch facility this past week.

“There was no way I was going to miss it,” Bennett-Awad said. “I love doing it. It’s so important in the development of our future Olympians.”

Having grown up in Lang-ley, Bennett-Awad knows how important good instruction was to her own development and later success.

“I was greatly influenced by Pam Arthur, an instructor in the Lower Mainland. To this day, I still go to her for advice and guidance.”

Bennett-Awad hopes to get the medical clearance this week to begin riding again herself. She’s got no fewer than five horses in training back home in Temecula, California, and competitions planned for as early as October.

Bennett-Awad has every intention of vying for a spot on Canada’s Olympic team for 2016. Understandably, she feels that she has some rather important unfinished business to attend to.