ISSUE 57
AUGUST 2020
ANOTHER MILESTONE
FOR SIMONE PEARCE
CAROLYN LIEUTENANT
COURAGEOUS KIWI
HEATH RYAN &
THE FUTURE OF EA

PLUS: A showjumping mule, Lisa Martin’s recovery, 10 tips for riding the Novice test, horses on the silver screen, Will Enzinger and the next generation, Dr Kerry Mack, Brett Parbery and more!

AUSTRALIA`S BEST EQUINE MAGAZINE
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ISSUE 57

CONTENTS

AUGUST 2020
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A few Words

FROM THE
CHAIRMAN

Opinion

EA ADMINISTRATION & HOPEFULLY A FUTURE

RYAN'S RAVE BY HEATH RYAN

Dressage

ANOTHER MILESTONE FOR SIMONE PEARCE

BY ADELE SEVERS

Dressage

LISA MARTIN’S LONG & WINDING ROAD

BY ADELE SEVERS

Special feature

COURAGEOUS KIWI BLAZES HER OWN TRAIL

BY ROGER FITZHARDINGE

EQ Families

MUTANT EQUINE NEUROSIS GENE OR LUCK OF THE DRAW?

BY MIM COLEMAN

Dressage

10 TIPS FOR RIDING THE NOVICE TEST

BY EQ LIFE / ROGER FITZHARDINGE

Special feature

HORSING AROUND ON THE BIG SCREEN

BY SUZY JARRATT

Special feature

BEACON OF HOPE FOR BRIGHTLIGHT BOY

BY EQ LIFE

Eventing

WILL ENZINGER FORGES THE NEXT GEN

BY EQ LIFE

Showjumping

WHO SAYS MULES
CAN’T JUMP?

BY EQ LIFE

Training

SUBMISSION OR STRESS? SOMETHING TO CHEW ON

BY DR KERRY MACK

Training

OPTIMISING YOUR LEARNING AS A RIDER

BY BRETT PARBERY

Health

WINTER’S SCOURGE, THE FOOT ABSCESS

BY DR MAXINE BRAIN

My Favourite Dish

BAKED GARLIC PARMESAN CHICKEN

WITH WILL ENZINGER
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Three generations: Cheryl Lawrence, Lydia Jackson and Sabrina Jackson. © Roger Fitzhardinge
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Ever wondered really deeply and philosophically about where you came from? What was it that created you, a human, to be completely and utterly obsessed with horses? Is it Nature or is it Nurture?

“The potential snorting equine
dragons were placid and like
putty in Sabrina’s care.”

Are we born with a mutant equine neurosis gene? Or are we influenced by our environment that shapes our passion for all things equine and “matchy matchy”? Curious by nature, I thought this would be an interesting concept to explore.

Lucky for me, on my doorstep in Tasmania I have the perfect subjects to quench my curiosity: three generations of State, National and Trans-Tasman champions. Collectively they share over 100 years of a deep and unswerving love of horses. What sustains them in their ongoing involvement with horses? What is the single source of truth for each of them?

In their own words, drawing on their own experiences, what I discovered was not what I expected. I started at the end, with Sabrina, daughter of Lydia and grand-daughter of Cheryl. With an enviable pedigree of State, National and Trans-Tasman champions, one could assume that Sabrina’s equestrian life started at that moment where fireworks light the sky and waves crash on sandy beaches. Without a doubt, Sabrina was going to be a prime Nature candidate.

In her first magazine interview, Sabrina shares with me her own memories and thoughts about her life with horses. “I love horses because they are like your partner,” she says, “and you get to play with them as well, and they are your friend. You get to do so many fun things with them.”

I asked Sabrina to close her eyes and go back to the first time she saw a horse and how that made her feel. For Sabrina, it was coming to Kingston Agistment with her mum. “When I came here to the farm I just thought ‘they are cute’. Their faces and how they can react — Archie smiles and it makes me happy.” I ask how he makes her smile and Sabrina answered: “He follows me around, we play chasing, and he eats my Oreos. He even eats my brother’s lollipops.”

Sabrina has no recollection of the moment that her equine passion began. Going to Kingston Agistment, now owned by her parents, it was inevitable that she would come into contact with horses. Her mum, Lydia, and Nona Cheryl will tell you about Sabrina as a baby, sitting in their arms as horses were being ridden in the arena on a circle around her. Sabrina’s eyes never leaving the sight and sound of the horse. Her arms stretched out, longing to touch and feel the soft coat and warmth of their breath.

Once she was walking, every horse was lovingly adored by Sabrina; brushed, patted and led to the wash bay; the potential snorting equine dragons were placid and like putty in Sabrina’s care. They listened to her natter and chatter with one ear and a warm muzzle searching her pockets for treats. All attempts at pawing ceased, each horse standing square and not budging when Sabrina was in the stable.

So, when I ask Sabrina what it is that she loves about horses, I didn’t expect this answer — “Because they are my friends and I want to spend all my time with my best friend Archie.” Archie is your typical liver-chestnut pony, angelic one day and not so the next day. Being dumped in the show-ring is something Sabrina experienced very early in her competition career. Yet despite that, Archie is “her best friend, he is cute, funny and quirky”, she says.

Horses are magnificent animals with their own instincts of flight or fight. Did they sense something within her genetic code that gave them confidence? Sabrina’s age and her natural feel for the horses would suggest that she is a candidate for Nature being her source of truth.

I move on to Cheryl who has a lifetime of experience with horses that extends beyond the years of Sabrina and Lydia combined. I ask Cheryl to consider her child self and go back in time to discern what ignited the fire that burns so bright and strong generations later.

It all started at a local riding school in the Hobart suburbs, Cheryl explains. “My sister rode and she wasn’t allowed to go unless she took me with her. I think my mum just wanted me out of the house. I was under 10 and quite a nuisance.” Neither of her parents had a history with horses and accepted their daughter’s interest in going to the riding school as nothing special.

Cheryl recalls there were quite a few Shetlands at the riding school, and when riding them she was off them more than she was on. “They got a lot of brushing, I could spend hours brushing them and the smell of them was just beautiful,” says Cheryl as she goes back in time and the beautiful memories so clear in her mind return. “That horsey smell was a really beautiful smell!”

When asked about riding lessons, Cheryl recalls clearly “hands still and heels down” was the extent of the lessons Mr Seymour, sitting in his jinker, would yell out at the children hooning around the paddock. “That’s how we learnt to stay on.” Freestyling.

From Shetland ponies, Cheryl moved on to a New Forest Pony. A beautiful creamy colour, his name was Alladdin’s Cream, imported from the UK. Her voice softening as the memory returns… “He was beautiful to ride.” The two would ride around the foothills of Hobart and chase a lot of boys in the gorse bushes who dared to poke fun at her.

They knew not to mess with the young girl on her New Forest Pony.

In our conversation, a wonderful memory emerged of the sisters galloping up the local streets; the horses freshly shod, there would be sparks flying from the road metal as they made their way back to the stables. Could you imagine doing that these days? Says Cheryl: “It is completely absurd but a lot of fun”.

Another treasured memory is that Cheryl’s mother made her first velvet cap and riding jacket for her to compete at her first Royal Hobart Show riding a white Shetland pony called Marigold. “We looked a wreck but we had a lot of fun,” recalls Cheryl.

“That horsey smell was
a really beautiful smell!”

“What keeps you going?” I ask. “Working with the horse and the training, working together,” Chery replies. She rides at least five days a week. Walking to the paddock and calling her horse, him calling back, brings a joy to her that I see wash over her face as she shares this with me. “Horses are your friend and I feel that he talks to me. I am so lucky to be able to ride and to have such a lovely horse. I think he likes me too.” Cheryl says it is something about when she sits on the horse that she feels she is going on a wonderful journey.

Listening to Cheryl’s journey with horses, with no genetic connection to them, I conclude that Cheryl is a product of Nurture. Yet the feel and rapport that she developed early in her childhood may have influenced her DNA, passed on to her daughter and grand-daughter.

Lydia can’t remember clearly the first time she saw a horse. “They were always just there,” she says. Both her parents were heavily involved in eventing and showing at that time. What Lydia does recall is her childhood pony, Midnight. “Midnight was my best friend.” Not unlike her daughter Sabrina, it is the after-school rush of being with your pony that she loved the most. “We did all sorts of things, jumping the electrical tape. He would call out to me when I got home from school. He was just amazing.”

Lydia would imagine fantasy landscapes based on children’s books such as Enid Blyton’s The Faraway Tree. Lydia and her best friend Midnight would explore the bush surrounds of the neighbourhood, transforming it into a fantasy forest and talking to Midnight like they were characters in a book.

Lydia has had a very successful career as a professional rider, something that she never really thought much about. “I just rode,” she says when asked how her success came to be. “I just like to win and I work hard for it.” Which, as a teenager, meant that Lydia didn’t have a social life, the competition on the weekend being the focus and the priority. Something as common as going to the movies didn’t even cross her mind.

Another common theme from our time chatting was the smell of the horse being so beautiful. Lydia expands by saying: “It’s the smell, and as soon as you sit on their back you sigh with happiness”. Cheryl agrees: “It’s a beautiful place to be, on a horse’s back.”

I ask, “Do you see yourself like your mum and continue to ride for decades to come?” Lydia’s response has all of us laughing with big, heartfelt, belly laughs. “Well, there is not much else to do.” Sabrina and Cheryl chime in, “What would you do? Is there anything else to do?”

Pondering that question, I conclude our time together with raucous laughter. Lydia, in my view, is a combination of Nature and Nurture. Her mother with a non-horsey background develops a lifelong LOVE for horses. The environment Lydia grew up in ignited the equine genes that she has passed on to her daughter, Sabrina.

I am no scientist and this does not pass any scientific approach. In the end, the question of Nature or Nurture is irrelevant. What shines bright and is the one source of the truth that spans three generations is the wonderful friendships horses give us is what sustains the passion — in the past, the present and into the future. As Winston Churchill said: “No hour of life is lost that is spent in the saddle”.

Thank you to Cheryl Lawrence, Lydia Jackson and Sabrina Jackson for sharing their wonderful memories! EQ

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