Park Lane Stables have been a key part of their community in Teddington, London, for years. Sadly, they are now at risk of losing their stables and are crowdfunding to purchase the property they call home to enable them to continue providing an invaluable service to their community. Park Lane is a small charity RDA (Riding for the Disabled Association) stables that provides therapy to local children and adults both with and without disabilities and mental health challenges. Their closure will therefore come at a great loss to those who rely on their services.
The lease on their stables is up at the end of May, however, the landlord is not willing to renew the lease and wants to sell the property. They have been forced to urgently appeal for help to raise the £1 million needed to secure the future of the centre, and that of the staff, clients, and horses that have come to depend on the property.
Sadly, buying the current property seems to be the only option in order to keep this RDA stable running, as other stables in London are so few and far between, and moving to a rural area would take them away from the community they serve.
“(Buying the stables) will secure our future in the long-term and with the money we save from the cost of the lease, we will be able to provide more lessons at a subsidised rate and invest in vital therapy equipment.
The stables have a cottage which will become assisted living for those with additional needs so they will be in the heart of the community and living with the horses.”
Natalie O’Rourke, Manager at Park Lane Stables.
Before the Coronavirus pandemic, the charity provided in excess of 3000 sessions of therapeutic riding for adults and children with disabilities every year. Research has shown that these sessions provide huge benefits to their participants, who often show improvements in their ability to communicate, a marked physical improvement as well as an increased ability to build relationships.
“We call ourselves the community stables because we’re here for everybody. The same way that anybody can use the library or the swimming pool, we are here for everybody that wants to get involved.”
With such vital work being carried out annually to the local community, the team at Park Lane are asking for any possible donations to be made to help save the stables. They have currently raised over £140,000 but have stated that this is an ‘all or nothing campaign’. If the total amount needed has not been raised, there will sadly be no other option than for the stables to close their doors. In the unfortunate circumstance that their target is not reached in time, they will be returning all pledges that have kindly been donated.
It has been a fantastic start to the year for one of the USA’s leading sport horse breeders Spy Coast Farm, as their impressive stallion Diktator van de Boslandhoeve has been awarded the 2020 South Pacific Award as the Leading US-Based Jumper Sire of the Year.
Spy Coast Farm is a highly regarded breeding operation in the US specialising in the production and development of top-quality performance horses, whilst also making it’s mark on the European market in an exciting partnership with Belgian based breeding enterprise, Mares of Macha.
This latest accolade is testament to the successful breeding operation at Spy Coast Farm and demonstrates Diktator van de Boslandhoeve’s ability to produce outstanding stock, making him a fantastic stallion choice for American breeders. Diktator is a truly modern sports horse sire, his bloodlines boast some of the most successful stallions in Europe including Nimmerdor, Argentinus, Capitol and Lord. His damline is equally as strong with multiple proven breeding mares including his dam Rebecca van de Boslandhoeve who, alongside Diktator, has produced several top competition horses as well as two other approved stallions.
This impressive stallion enjoyed an illustrious jumping career with great success as a young horse in Belgium, and went on to compete in international 1m60 classes and Nations Cups with Shane Sweetnam of Ireland, before joining the winning team in Ocala, America. He combines unlimited scope and ability over fences with impressive paces, strong, correct conformation, and a kind temperament which he is now passing on to his offspring.
Now retired to stud, Diktator is demonstrating his versatility for sport by producing multiple top jumpers competing up to Grand Prix level, as well as successful hunters and eventers.
On January 1st 2021, Britain is leaving the European Union, known now as BREXIT. Of course, we have been trying to leave the EU for several years, with much debate and anguish but in less than a month, the ‘transition period’ is finally over. So that means if you ride, compete, work, travel or trade in Europe, a number of changes are coming – scarily soon. A number of arrangements are dependent on there being a free trade agreement in place when we leave. If no deal is reached then exactly what third country status Britain will be, will be announced on 31 December.
Moving horses, either temporarily or permanently and whether they are registered or unregistered animals, is expected to become much more detailed and inevitably more expensive, with no trade agreement in place. It’s important to stress that any information is subject to change, but key areas of change are:
Documentation – horses will now require an Export Health Certificate (EHC), signed by an Official Vet (OV), and the Import of Products, Animals, Food and Feed Systems (IPAFFS) service must be notified of their movements.
Disease testing – registered equines will require a blood test for equine infectious anaemia within 90 days of travel for temporary exports (such as attending a competition). Uncastrated males will also require equine viral arteritis testing up to 21 days before travel unless they meet vaccination requirements. The rules and timings are different for unregistered equines.
Residency/isolation – registered horses must be resident in the UK or a country with equivalent health status for 40 days before departure.
Transporters and vehicles – UK authorisations and certificates will no longer be recognised, and new transport documentation will need to be arranged by one of the 27 EU member states.
Entry points – all horses must pass through a Border Control Post (BCP) in the EU with the correct documentation. Currently, there are six servicing the short channel crossings to France, which are authorised to accept registered horses.
The British Equestrian Federation (BEF) has prepared advice for those looking to compete horses with purple FEI recognition cards for sporting or competition purposes. For horses in general, everyone is awaiting news on the approval of the UK’s equine stud books, which will hopefully happen – this would mean that horses with a recognised passport would follow a similar process to FEI-registered horses. If approval is not given, and it’s not expected to happen before 1 January, these horses will require a government-issued ID document in addition to their passport, and other export documentation.
There’s a dedicated Brexit page on the British Equestrian website, which outlines the requirements and process you need to follow. Key points of which you should be aware
The BEF advises anyone looking to export a horse to Europe to avoid the first few weeks of January next year while the process beds in.
Even seasoned competitors/transporters would benefit from engaging with an approved shipper, to help with the travel process for their first few visits to the continent post-Brexit.
Allow plenty of time to complete the additional paperwork and checks in the days and weeks before you set off, and plan your journey carefully to allow extra time for clearing your BCP where all horses will undergo documentary, ID and physical checks which means they will be unloaded.
Find an Official Veterinarian in your area and make an introduction – having a good relationship with them is key because they will need to certify your documents the day before you depart.
This information is current but likely to change, so please check out the BEF website or with your sports member body before starting any travel arrangements.
If anyone understands the sweet taste of triumph against adversity, then it’s Laura Collett. The 16-year journey to winning her first 5* Three Day Event at Pau 5* France last weekend, has involved more challenges than your average rider, including an accident that left her in a coma for six weeks and permanent loss of sight in one eye.
Les 5 Etoiles de Pau was the only CCI5*-L of the entire season so inevitably attracted a world-class field. This included the top six highest-ranked riders in the world. Riding her Boekelo 2019 winner London 52, Laura who is ranked 49th, led the entire competition, beating Piggy French (Brookfield Inocent) into second and Tim Price (Wesko) into third.
Speaking after her victory Laura said: “The dream became a reality and I still can’t believe this is all really happening. This morning I was saying to myself that if I had the choice, I wouldn’t have wanted to ride any other horse than London 52 in this kind of competition! He is a fantastic jumper. It was his first time competing at this level and I really wasn’t expecting this kind of result at the end of the competition. All of last year it was a case of ‘very nearly’. We were unlucky and they were split-second moments that caused our undoing but that’s all it takes in our sport.”
It was one of those moments in 2013 when competing in the cross-country, her horse misread a corner fence at Tweseldown and suffered a rotational fall, landing directly on top of the petite 5ft 3 rider who was instantly knocked out. In the ambulance, the paramedics had to resuscitate her five times and on arrival at the hospital, the extent of her injuries was substantial, including fractured shoulder, broken ribs, a punctured lung, a lacerated liver, and injuries to her kidneys. She was placed in an induced coma for six days and it later transpired that a fragment of her shoulder bone had gravitated to her right eye through her bloodstream. It damaged the optic nerve, and she lost sight in that eye completely.
It took many months to adapt her eyesight even for day to day life and she recounts walking into things a lot. “When I started jumping, it seemed like the jumps would move.” She now wears goggles to protect her eyes from the elements when she is going cross-country.
Fortunately, Laura cannot remember the accident, so she had no confidence issues returning to eventing. “By the time I woke up, it was under control and I was lucky not to have any brain injuries. All I wanted to do was get back to competing.” It might not surprise you that just over six weeks later, she was back riding, which she admits may have been too soon. Although like our Horse Scout CEO Lucienne Elms, Laura spent several months living at the Injured Jockey Fund Rehabilitation Centre, Oaksey House. “They were amazing and there is no way I would have made such a comeback and so quickly, without their help.”
Beyond guts, grit and adversity, eventing is about a partnership, trust and understanding between human and horse. Laura Collett has that ability to make her horses achieve their full potential and she describes her Pau winner London 52 as an insecure horse who has put a lot of trust in her, which ultimately helps. He has only ever known Laura as a rider from an early age in his sporting career. Training from the beginning of a horse’s journey is what builds the partnership, she explains. Laura who rides at least 13 horses a day has trained most of her champions from scratch, having never had the means to buy ‘ready-made’ champions.
Laura was smitten from the first time she sat on a pony at the age of two and started out in showing but always her dream was to be a professional event rider. From early childhood, she learned that in order to survive, ponies would have to be bought, produced and sold.
At the age of 12, she found a young pony called Noble Springbok from a one-lined advert and purchased him for the moderate sum of £5500. Her mother allowed her to keep this one, knowing he could be the one to achieve her dreams. Training the pony from scratch, in their first year of competitive eventing, they won everything and attracted the eyes of Youth team selectors. Laura Collett was placed on World Class Programme which meant she received lottery funding. A privilege that requires consistent exceptional results and one that she is still part of, 15 years later.
In 2005 the formidable partnership were selected for the British Pony Event Team at the European Championships, where she won team gold and individual bronze. ‘Spring’ was to launch her career, on both notoriety and monetary grounds. She signed away the right to admit how much he was sold for but a ‘life-changing’ amount passed hands. At just 16 years of age, she bought a new lorry to transport her horses, developed her facilities at home and purchased Rayef. This was another young horse who she trained on to win team and individual golds at both the Junior and Young Rider European Championships and finished 8th at her very first Badminton aged just 22.
There is little time for hobbies and even when the eventing season is over, Laura spends the winters producing young horses and doing plenty of showjumping. She also loves horse-racing and her event yard is partially funded by having racehorses in for some jump training. She was partially responsible for a first and second place at this year’s Cheltenham Festival. Simply the Betts and St Calvados, two National Hunt horses trained by Harry Whittington were sent to her to jump, leading up the Festival where they finished first and second respectively.
Despite eventing often attracting an elitist image, Laura Collett is proof that hard work and talent are the real key to success. She has never felt particularly challenged by not having a big money pot and thinks it makes her success all the more rewarding. “I’ve never known it any different. We would always buy unbroken ones, train them and sell them to be able to afford to do it and I still have to do that now. With all the other challenges it feels extra special because you know exactly what has gone into that win.”
The eventing world welcomed a much-needed addition to their calendar this week: Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) at Tryon Resort will host a new CCI4*-L eventing competition to be held November 12th-15th, 2020.
The event is pending USEF and FEI approval but will feature international competition at the CCI4*-L, CCI4*-S, CCI3*-L, and CCI2*-L levels, including the only CCI4*-L competition on the East Coast for the entire 2020 season. The event will also mark the highest level of eventing competition hosted at the venue since the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 (WEG). Although the venue hosts international eventing competitions at a lower level, annually.
Since equestrian sport was allowed to resume on June 3rd, 2020, TIEC has successfully operated Hunter, Jumper, and Dressage competitions. They have been praised by riders and visitors for implementing rigorous COVID-19 safety, sanitation, and operations policies to protect competitors and staff. The 19-page Tryon Resort COVID-19 Action Plan includes protocols like mandatory masks and social distancing for all persons on property, temperature checks at the entrance, and a thermal camera system onsite. Attendance onsite for competitions is limited to competitors and their family, barn staff, and essential personnel only and spectators are not permitted.
The three-day event will include a cross-country course designed by one of the most experienced designers in the world, Captain Mark Phillips, who is behind The Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials and was the Course Designer for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018. The former Olympic event rider was previously Chef d’equipe of the US eventing team for 20 years.
This new fixture will take place on the premier White Oak Cross-Country Course featured at WEG and will make full use of the venue’s 1,200 permanent stalls to allow for ample distancing between competitors, alongside stringent safety protocols.
“We are thrilled to be awarded the bid for a CCI4*-L this November,” said Sharon Decker president of Tryon Equestrian Properties, Carolinas Operations. “We have worked incredibly hard to keep equestrian sport safe and operational during this pandemic. So far, we have managed beautifully because of strong protocols and guest cooperation, and we don’t take this for granted. We earn the privilege to host equestrian sport every day and are honored to host this premier competition. We will continue to enforce strict protocols to keep everyone safe so we can continue enjoying this sport we all love.”
Jenni Autry, USEF Managing Director of Eventing said this: “Following the cancellation of multiple CCI4*-L competitions this year due to COVID-19, the USEF opened a bid process to add a CCI4*-L for 2020 in order to give athletes the opportunity to secure qualifying results for the postponed Tokyo Olympic Games and the 2021 Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event. We realize what an incredibly difficult year it has been for organizers, and we are grateful to Tryon for stepping up to fill this critical void in the U.S. calendar.”
The 1,600-acre facility also features onsite lodging options, onsite dining with to-go, and online ordering. As well as outdoor seating, an onsite general and grocery store, and other amenities lending to competitor safety.
Sadly, spectators are not permitted to attend any competitions at TIEC throughout 2020 as per the facility’s existing safety policies. However free live streaming will be available for both the November CCI4*-L and Blue Ridge Mountain Horse Trials, a national event set to run September 11th-13th. Live streaming of highlight classes at Hunter/Jumper competition is currently available at www.Tryon.com/streaming
COVID-19 Safety: Tryon Resort is committed to providing a safe and fun experience for all competitors and barn staff, Tryon Resort staff, and all members of the equestrian community. In conjunction with local, state, and federal recommendations and mandates, including those from the World Health Organization (WHO), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and United States Equestrian Federation (USEF). TIEC has implemented additional guidelines and cleaning protocols, added to previously existing stringent standards, to alleviate the potential impact of COVID-19 and to ensure that the operation horse shows is smooth, efficient, and most importantly, safe for all involved.
Tryon Resort management is in close communication and collaboration with NC Governor Roy Cooper’s Emergency Preparedness Staff and with the Polk County Manager and the Directors of Health Services and Emergency Preparedness.
The majority of 2020’s eventing season has taken a huge hit due to the coronavirus pandemic, with the vast amount of riders eagerly anticipating the return to some form of normality. It is, therefore, fantastic to finally see one of the first high-profile shows in North American eventing take place this year at the MARS Great Meadow international in Virginia, USA.
Following the cancellation of the USEA American Eventing Championships along with multiple other high-performance events this season, the organisers of Great Meadow international have introduced a CCI3*-L division to give competitors more opportunity to qualify for the fall season. Needless to say, the excitement leading toward this show has been building, although it will inevitably be unlike any show previously experienced.
The event organisers have taken multiple precautions in order to safely run this show and a strict safety protocol will be in effect for all participants to adhere to. Some of the measures taken will include:
Daily temperature checks for everyone entering the competition grounds.
Enforced social distancing measures throughout the showground and stabling.
Facemasks to be worn at all times on the premises unless mounted.
No access to the competition grounds for the general public, spectators, and non-essential personnel.
This ‘new normal’ for equestrians may take some getting used to, but in order for eventing to resume it is vital for shows to provide a safe environment for all participants. It is essential for these shows to run in compliance with both state and local health regulations, FEI regulations as well as the USEF COVID-19 Competition Action Plan.
Regardless of these necessary precautions, the show has seen a significant number of horse and rider combinations registering, with over 200 entries. The MARS Great Meadow International has received 75 entries in the CCI4*-S division alone, so a thrilling competition is guaranteed!
Some of this years riders to watch include:
Winner of the 2018 competition, Will Colman with three rides in the 4* – Tight Lines, Dondante and TKS Cooley.
Liz Halliday-Sharp with four rides in the 4* section – Flash Cooley, Fernhill By Night, Deniro Z, and Cooley Quicksilver.
Clayton Fredericks withFE Coldplay
Phillip Dutton with five entries including Fernhill Singapore, Luke 140, Z Sea of Clouds, and Blackfoot Mystery who he is riding for Boyd Martin.
Founder and CEO of Horse Scout Group, Lucienne Elms has two rides in the 4* section, Mistralou her retrained racehorse and Diamond Duette, by Carrick Diamond Lad.
The show will kick off today (Wednesday 19th August 2020) and the full schedule can be viewed here.
Horse and Country TV will be live streaming the MARS Great Meadow International with Karen O’Connor and Sinead Halpin commentating and are sure to provide some great insights into this year’s competition. The live streaming schedule is as follows –
Friday, Aug. 21: CCI3*-L, CCI2*-S, and Preliminary cross country; CCI4*-S dressage.
HorseScout.com has proven to be the marketplace of choice for advertising top-class event horses for sale and is used daily by world-class, professional event riders, and amateur riders alike. Now in 2020, HorseScoutGroup.com has evolved to become the largest equestrian distribution channel in the world exceeding 10.5 million users! The Horse Scout marketplace is a globally respected business platform for all things equestrian: riders, grooms, coaches, breeders, industry professionals, and horsey enthusiasts.
HorseScout.com has a range of key features which makes the platform the obvious choice to market top quality horses, these include:
Automatic bloodline connections.
Extensive search functionality.
A global equestrian marketing agency leveraging social media platforms, email campaigns, and good old fashioned word of mouth through the world’s best international agents.
Horse finder service allowing clients early access to horses that meet their search criteria.
A recent success story..
“Heartbroken to say goodbye to RHS Lady Willoughby but so excited to follow her progress in the USA. Couldn’t wish for a better home for her! Thank you to Horse Scout for matching the client!”
Affiliated British Eventing rider, July 2020.
An equestrian marketing platform designed for riders by riders
Founder and CEO of the Horse Scout Group, Lucienne Elms is a competitive 4* event rider herself with 18 years of experience in the professional equestrian industry. This knowledge of the needs and demands for riders has enabled HorseScout.com to become the leading marketplace for equestrian business.
“I am still in contact with buyers and sellers daily myself, for some of the larger international sales, I love working with clients sourcing their perfect horse in my downtime from the other Horse Scout business demands.“
Billy Alberto, 16.3hh, lightweight bay 8 year old gelding bred by The Billy Stud, sire Tangelo van de Zuuthoeve. Oozes quality.
Berty is a stunning-looking and genuine bold, careful horse. He is loving and fun on the yard as well as having all the necessary aptitudes across all three phases of eventing. He has three super paces and is established across all of them.
“We use HorseScout.com to source our quality young stock from Europe”.
Canadian 5* Event Rider
“I have had a lot of success selling our horses through Horse Scout both in the UK and abroad, gaining access to an impressive global network. Horse Scout attracts both the amateur as well as the professional rider, with a huge database of clients it covers all aspects of connecting the equestrian community. I couldn’t recommend their services more highly.”
GB 5* Event Rider
“We use HorseScout.com to advertise our top event horses for sale to attract a quality, competition minded audience.”
An exciting collaboration has been established between Spy Coast Farm, one of USA’s largest sport horse breeders and Mares of Macha, a Belgian company selling embryos, which could help revolutionize, monetize and incentivize the sport and breeding industry. It is also hoped that this partnership paves the way to increase two-way breeding trade between the US and Europe.
The objective of the collaboration is to identify and champion top dam lines (some of which may have migrated to the US) and then make the acquisition of their frozen embryo’s more transparent and accessible to buyers all over the world.
The seeds of the partnership were sown when Lisa Lourie of Spy Coast Farm was approached by Klaas De Coster of Mares of Macha, to buy a filly from her elite foundation mare “Werly Chin de Muze”. Klaas wished to reintroduce this highly regarded dam line back to Europe and beyond, as he saw it to be one of the best in the world.
Mares of Macha collects frozen embryos from the world’s top dam lines and then sells frozen them to buyers all over the world for preset fees. Spy Coast will help promote the initiative in the US. The emphasis is on giving everyone access to proven breeding via the best dam lines, explains Klaas: “ Our objective is simple: access to proven breeding. It was really difficult if you were a normal breeder and wanted to breed World Cup horses or Olympic horses. It was impossible to get in contact with the right people and be able to even buy the foals and embryos. We were lucky because we already had a connection and contacts within the sport. We wanted to try to make those extremely rare horses available for all the people in the room.”
Spy Coast Farm has long been a highly regarded breeding operation in the US. Now it is making its mark on Europe, which for years has been considered the epicenter of sport horse breeding. Klaas recognized and admired what Spy Coast was achieving and was keen to buy their foundation mare, Werly Chin de Muze. He explains why. “Werly Chin is out of Querly Chin, I think she is the best broodmare in the world, ever. I am a mathematician so I do the research and I look at results. No other horse has done what she has done in producing top horses and Werly is a direct daughter. She has given a number of 1m60 horses already. She is such a special mare.”
As testament to the success and reputation of Spy Coast Farm, Lisa has been regularly approached by breeders from all over the world to sell her mares but has resisted the temptation. Yet she felt it was a ‘meeting of minds’ with Klaas and after much persuasion, she agreed to sell her beloved Werly to Mares of Macha.
“By selling to Mares of Macha, I could be assured that Werly’s genetics will be dispersed to the maximum number of breeders rather than just one breeder” explains Lisa. “I was impressed by Klass who was not just a breeder, he was an entrepreneur.” Mares of Macha is not so much a traditional stud but rather a highly thought out enterprise, with the aim of making the best bloodlines available to a wider market as frozen embryos. We agree with each other’s philosophy of breeding and hope that this venture will positively impact sport horse breeding around the world.”
The charity initiative is in support of two charities – JAMES’ PLACE (which is important to both Sarah & Francesca) and KCAT CAMPHILL CALLAN a cause close to Sarah’s heart.
With the extremely generous support of the 5 milliners Francesca wears during Royal Ascot 2020, Francesca’s 5 different looks from each of the 5 days racing will be raffled off. Sarah has donated the 5 dresses & each of the 5 milliners have agreed to donate their headpieces. Raffle draw winners will also receive a signed photograph from Francesca.
Two bonus prizes for the 6th & 7th tickets drawn have been kindly donated by jeweller Annoushka & shoe designer Emmy London, brands Francesca will be wearing each day of the meeting to compliment the clothing & millinery choices of her stylist Sarah. We are thrilled to be showcasing British brands & small businesses as well as sustainable fashion with the chosen looks.
DAY 1 PRIZE – a headpiece donated by Jess Collett Millinery & a vintage Luisa Spagnoli dress donated by Sarah Kate Byrne.
DAY 2 PRIZE – a headpiece donated by Lock & Co. Hatters & a vintage dress donated by Sarah Kate Byrne.
DAY 3 PRIZE – a headpiece donated by Laura Hanlon Designer & a vintage palazzo jumpsuit donated by Sarah Kate Byrne.
BONUS PRIZE 7 – a pair of ready-to-wear shoes from Emmy London.
Enter the raffle draw by buying tickets for £10 per ticket. You can enter as many times as you like to increase your chances of winning the dress, hat & signed photo as well as the bonus prizes!
The draw will take place on 30th June and the first 5 tickets drawn will win one of the 5 outfits (dress/hat/photo). Winners will pick their chosen outfit in line with the order in which their tickets are drawn. Outfits will be dispatched to the winners thereafter.
Ticket 6 will win the piece of Annoushka jewellery & ticket 7 will win a pair of Emmy London ready-to-wear shoes. Both of these winners will also receive a signed photograph of Francesca.
The Horse Scout Team is delighted to announce that our CEO Lucienne Elms has married her partner Mark Bellissimo, a notable American entrepreneur and CEO of Equestrian Sport Productions. Due to the circumstances this momentous moment occurred in a private ceremony held in North Carolina, US, with just a handful of witnesses, together with the couple’s two dogs!
Lucienne, an active 4* event rider and the founder of the Horse Scout Group has described the event as “a phenomenal chapter, I have married my best friend, and a man that shares my thirst for entrepreneurship”.
The happy couple will be celebrating properly in Europe 2021, with their friends and families from around the world.