I bring you news of an exciting new series we’re going to be running.
We’re going to be following, in real time, the backing and breaking of a 4 year old horse and its progress from first steps on the lunge to the exciting world of competition. Hopefully the series will form an interesting look into the ups and downs of training a horse to be successful in the ring and also (and probably more importantly) to be a well-rounded member of equine society.
It is not intended as a ‘how to break a horse in’ nor a ‘this is how you I think you should break a horse in’, merely a ‘this is how I’m breaking this horse in’. Hopefully it will prompt discussion along the way and I will certainly value our readers’ input. I have been involved with backing and breaking several horses but I’m certainly not claiming to be an expert. The number of horses I’ve broken in is in double figures, but probably low double figures. For the first few horses I was the jockey – a job which, oddly, is the least important one, especially in the early days. Eventually I broke a few in myself with help from a couple of trusted accomplices. The last two horses I backed and rode away almost entirely on my own – I have a method and it actually is possible to do as a solo effort. I don’t know exactly what path I’ll take with this horse yet, a lot will depend on his temperament and reactions. The steps I take, the order I take them in and the speed I take them at are always defined by the horse and its responses. I do know that I won’t have a huge amount of help available, but at the moment I don’t see that as a problem.
Look out for the first installment of the new series which will appear next week once the hustle and bustle of Badminton is out of the way. We’ll introduce you to Reggie, the new member of the e-Venting team, and fill you in on his background and progress so far. It’ll be an exciting journey!