Horse Ownership: Love isn’t a choice but marriage is.

Jack has recently had a few weeks holiday. Since the disappointment of HOYS, we all needed a bit of time to regroup and recover. Last week he came back into work but apparently had forgotten what a saddle was and thought he was 3 again. The mother wisely said “It was never going to be straight forward was it!” Jack is wonderful but a little bit high maintenance at times: with any horse that is […]

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The effect of fear in horses: brave or blind obedience

As it’s Halloween, it felt somewhat poetic to talk about something scary… Have you see the video from the French CCI5*, Les Etoiles de Pau, of the horse jumping into the wall? If you haven’t seen it, yes, it’s as scary as it sounds. British Rider, Jack Pinkney, ended up veering through a gap in the event’s fencing and the horse attempted to jump the very high wooden palisade wall, crashing into it and depositing […]

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Under pressure – One week until HOYS

I was sat in an interview once and the interviewer asked “How do you perform under pressure?”. Every part of me wanted to say “Like this!” and burst into a full vocal and dancing performance. I thankfully exercised some self control and didn’t. However, to this day, whenever I hear the Queen classic it makes me smile. Well, the song has very much been in my mind over the last few days. One week to […]

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Ban of whips debate: poked a Bear and got inspired

I was scrolling through Facebook the other evening when I came across a Horse and Hound post about Gemma Tattersall receiving a yellow card at an event. I had seen Gemma jump at Hickstead and was impressed with her partnership with her horse so was disappointed to read this. Scrolling through the comments, (mostly about Horse and Hound restricting viewing to their VIP readers!) I saw a lady had written that we are heading towards […]

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How long is ok to be ‘faking’?

LVS Jackpot Working Hunter winner at Kent County Show 2019

The last few weeks have been quite intense; highs (Jack and I qualified for HOYS), lows (34 degree heat stopping play) and some middly stuff too (nearly falling off at a cross pole.) It’s been quite a lot for my brain to process to be honest. I found myself drifting back into my low place and wondering why. As someone commented on my Facebook “You’ve just qualified for HOYS, that would put me in a […]

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Weren’t you utterly furious?

A few years ago, I was sat in the stands at Hickstead watching the Nursery Stakes class. I am always amazed how plucky these young children are to attack the tough course in the big grass ring at Hickstead. A young boy came in on a stunning bay pony who I knew had been very successful over the years, the pressure was on. He was jumping a brilliant round but came to a spread on […]

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There is no ‘it’ in ‘team’

“It’s got a voice today”, “Get it ready and I’ll get on it in a minute”, “It just isn’t playing ball today” These are just three examples of things I have heard being said at shows over the last few weeks and I have a question for these people. How do you expect to have a valuable partnership if you don’t even respect your horse enough to use he or she? Two little letters, I […]

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Hustle or Hassle

The Mothership messaged me the other day saying “We haven’t done a lot of winning recently but we are certainly learning a lot.” We have been putting some serious work in; both on and off the horse. I think that the time off the horse can be underestimated sometimes; the time to think, discuss ideas, talk about different tactics and thoughts of how to make things better. As Poirot would say time for the “little […]

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The Effect of Nerves

Seeing life through Joey’s eyes is quite special. Into the lorry he jumps, with his map in hand saying “Are we going on an adventure?” No worries at all. I wish I could be a bit more like Joey! I think I have underestimated the effect that nerves have on me! Just putting it out there. I know when I am having a proper wobble and the brain goes seriously to the dark side, I […]

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Don’t be brave

In the horse world of late, I have noticed this word brandished about a lot: Brave. “Be brave” “Feeling brave” “Finding my brave”. And, ever one to rock the boat when I see it necessary, I am going to have to object. I don’t want to be brave! And this is why… When I think “brave”, I think of soldiers, lions, fighter pilots going into battle. When I watch Carl Hester, or John Whittaker, or […]

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