Meet Sarah, our Riding Centre’s Assistant Manager. She’s been riding around here since she was six, and joined the team back in 1999, when she was fresh out of school.
After her year out working at the Riding Centre, Sarah went down to Newcastle to study law. But she just couldn’t keep away for long and would return during her holidays to work here. Upon completing her course, she decided to leave the courtroom altogether and follow her true calling, working with horses.
She then enrolled on an Equine Advanced National Diploma course in Essex, took an 18-month trip around the other side of the world and now after completing an MSc in Equine Science, she’s back with us full time at the Riding Centre – and our horses couldn’t be happier.
So without further ado, let’s hear everything you could possibly want to know about Sarah, from the lady herself…
Would you rather be attacked by ten duck-sized horses or one horse-sized duck, and why?
10 duck-sized horses as they would have smaller teeth and feet, and would be less able to jump over fences. The horse sized duck would also have the advantage of flight and attacking from above – terrifying!
Romeo or Polly?
Oooh difficult, and I really can’t choose between them… Romeo for his cheeky, but cute personality and Polly for being the nicest, best behaved Shetland I have ever worked with!
If you could ride anywhere in the world, where would you go to ride?
South America – the Inca Trail.
What would you banish to room 101?
When did you start riding horses and what got you started?
When I was six years old at Crieff Hydro, a birthday present from my non-horsey parents… One I’m sure they’ve regretted in the past as riding lessons and keeping horses can be very expensive and time consuming.
Do you have a favourite horse at the Riding Centre?
Yes, my own – Peppi – who I’ve owned for nearly 23 years and who has worked in the riding school for the past 20 years. All of the horses and ponies I work with at the moment are amazing though, and they all have their own personalities which make them all unique.
What is the most exciting riding competition you’ve taken part in?
I’ve competed in a number of different types of competitions over the years and still regularly compete my 25-year-old horse. The most exciting would have been Burgie Three Day Event about 10 years ago, although this year I competed in a showing class at Blair Atholl Horse Trials and that was quite exciting for different reasons such as trying to get Peppi past gazebos, grandstands and ice cream vans…
What are your three top tips for keeping a healthy horse?
Food, water and shelter
Regular exercise- for physical and mental well-being
What is your favourite season for riding and why?
It has to be the summer. Although the Scottish weather is particularly unpredictable, when we do have a nice summer’s day there’s nothing better than going for a hack around the Knock – the scenery and views are spectacular on a clear day. The light nights mean I can ride for hours after work and not be restricted by the light and it’s also the showing season, which is one of my favourite competition disciplines.