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Born to Shine on the Centre Line: Rowan

  • Posted: 24 April 2020

Horse and rider trottingWhen we're not busy Hobby Horsing around, we run monthly online dressage competition and training classes. And one of our highlights in our schedule is the British Dressage Online Championships

We're looking back through our 2019 champions and celebrating their successes. Qualifiers for our 2020 BD Online Championships opened in January and have been paused temporarily, but we're looking forward to reopening qualifying classes - all you'll need is three scores at 62% or above and it's open to BD members and non-members. 

In this Born to Shine on the Centre Line feature we meet Rowan Moore from Todmorden in West Yorkshire. Rowan and Mole placed 4th in the Introductory Restricted Class. 

How did you get into horses?

I started riding aged three and have been hooked ever since! I rode at riding schools and for other people until my late teens, started off in the showing world at my local riding club with my first love, a friend's Connemara called 'Molly'. I went on to study a degree in Equine Science and a PhD in Veterinary Preclinical Science where I focused on researching and developing a blood test for ragwort poisoning in horses. I got my own horses finally after my studies, a Welsh D mare and foal. Unfortunately both have since passed and I now have a four year old ID x 'Mole' (Bowland Eternity) that I am enjoying training and competing in Dressage Anywhere competitions and local unaffiliated dressage. We're also learning to jump and my goal is to one day do a one-day-event!

Tell us an interesting fact about yourself!

I considered going into the racing world and rode a racehorse out with the string on Epsom downs called 'Danakil'!

Where did you find your horse and how long have you been a partnership?

Bowland Eternity, stable name 'Mole' aged four is an ID x (1/8 Hanoverian), she's black, but goes bay in summer! I first met her in October 2018 where she was bred at Bowland Irish Draughts, she was three year old and had a colt foal at foot, she was broken February/March 2019 by Alex Ingoe-Topham at Short Clough Sport horses then came home to me in April 2019. We spent the summer hacking and starting to school then had a trip to Somerford Park Farm for a Camp Plus weekend and I discovered she can jump :-)

Have you got any funny stories about your horse?

Too many to list, ha! She is very nosey, loves any attention, spits out cake (I made her a carrot cake for her 4th birthday and sang to her!), will destroy anything you leave near her with her teeth and hooves (grooming kit, buckets, tack, coats, bales of shavings...the list goes on!). Just this week I went to the feed room and heard hooves, turned around and she had somehow become unclipped from her lead rope in the stable (head collar still on, rope dangling unbroken in stable), opened her stable door (bolt was on but not kick bolt) and just stood there looking at me. No explanation for that one!

What level do you compete at?

I compete Introductory-Preliminary.

How do you prepare for a dressage test? Any top tips you'd like to share?

I love watching videos of others on YouTube and previous Dressage Anywhere competitors. I make up silly phrases for the movements to remember them and don't over-practice in real life. I focus on knowing my test and make sure Mole is fit and happy and we've covered the basics. It's a balancing act with a youngster to make sure you vary what you do but don't overdo it while they're still growing, developing and learning.

What do you want to achieve in 2020?

To get a 70% score either at Intro or Prelim! Or just to move onto Prelim officially would be enough to be honest!

What's your biggest challenge?

Time. I have a demanding job that takes me all over the world, plus 2 young boys. Fitting in my hobby and passion is important for my sanity and performance in other areas of life, but it’s a constant juggling act!

What's your biggest achievement to date?

Owning my own horse!

How did you first hear about competing with Dressage Anywhere?

A local instructor mentioned there were online dressage competitions so I looked it up and started riding with Dressage Anywhere in mid 2019.

What's your favourite thing about competing with Dressage Anywhere?

The lack of competition day pressure and the ability to try the next level without any stress or fear of judgement (apart from the obvious being judged!)

What would you say to someone just getting started in dressage?

Smile, enjoy it and take time to understand the judge's comments to improve next time.

Quick fire round

Geldings or mares...

Mares

Tea or coffee...

Tea

Hacking or schooling...

Hacking

Spring, Summer, Autumn or Winter...

Summer

Bays, greys or chestnuts... 

Greys

Wellies or heels... 

Wellies

Crisps or chocolate... 

Crisps