I have been riding since I was 4 years old and then started under the instruction of Les Friend at 10 and have been with him since. Not coming from a horsey family was initially quite hard at first, starting from the very bottom, wishing for a pony, and then getting a second pony, starting pony club and slowly started going to gymkhana’s and local ag shows. Les and his wife Maureen have taught me so much over years and always push me to my limits even if I think it’s too far! I moved from a shaggy old pony ‘Nifty’, and then onto another shaggy pony ‘Katie’, that’s when I started pony club. From her I moved onto a very naughty hunter pony ‘Get Smart’ or ‘Beau’ as he was known to us. I started the local ag shows and gymkhanas on him but whatever Beau wanted, Beau would do, he definitely taught me how to stick in the saddle. From Beau I moved to my first Galloway, his name was ‘Mayflower Bumblebee’ or commonly known as ‘Bumble’ or ‘Bum’. He was just amazing! He took me from a pony clubber to a Royal and Horse of the Year placegetter.
Unfortunately my legs kept growing and I had to move onto my first hack ‘Langzig’ or ‘Comet’ for short. He wasn’t as educated as Bumble so I had to do a lot of the work myself with the help of Les. He was a very patient and willing horse, which was lucky because I had no idea what I was doing! He then carried me to win my Girl Rider 15-17 years at Sydney Royal in 2009 (I had only turned 15 the week before) and from then came many more rider and open wins for us both. After we sold Bumble and Comet we then bought ‘Toosh’. His show name was a definite mouthful, ‘Rimini Park Ty Tooshka’! Everyone adored the Toosh man as his nature was second to none; I have never met such a willing horse who just tried his heart out. He carried me to so many rider and open hunter wins, qualifying himself for EA Nationals in 2011 and also qualifying for EA Interschool Nationals in the same year for Eventing. A true all-rounder who would do anything you wanted. He was always wanted for rider classes as he was such a true gentleman and so honest.
He carried me around 1.10m show jumping courses, around barrel races and to many Supreme Hack wins. We then purchased my current hack ‘Pikasso’, or as EVERYBODY knows; ‘Joker’, and that he surely is. He has been my biggest challenge yet, but without doubt we overcame all those hurdles we faced and he carried me to win Grand National Rider 17-21 years in 2013, my greatest achievement so far. From that day on we had more hurdles to overcome and now we think we are past them all, as this year he gave me the most perfect ride for Runner Up EA Rider over 18 years, qualifying me for the EA Nationals in December. I now have another project for this winter break and that is to break in my 2 year old riding pony ‘BelleVale Dazzling Design’. ‘Chilli’ as he is known around the stable is the cheekiest, naughtiest little pony you will ever meet, but he went further than I expected and at his first three shows in hand this year, he came home with 4 Champions and just took everything in his stride. I am looking forward to working with Judges Choice so I can present my horses to the perfection they deserve.