Day 4 – Describe the most important horses you’ve had in your life

Dobbin, was the first pony I ever rode, so I guess he’s responsible for me getting the horsey bug, although he belonged to my cousins, thats where it all began.

Not a great picture, but thats me as a child on Dobbin!

Not a great picture, but thats me as a child on Dobbin!

Then there was Dimples my 1st pony, on who I leaned to ride properly and went to my 1st ever show on, did the lead rein class when I was about 6 or 7 & got my 1st ever rosette purely because they gave all the children in the class one to avoid tears!

Me & my sister with Dimples, love how I kept the helmet on even though she was riding!

Me & my sister with Dimples, love how I kept the helmet on even though she was riding!

Next was Thunder, who was Dimples foal, a lovely 12.2hh pale Dun, or more likely Buckskin, but it was all called Dun back then. I learned so much from him, myself & my dad broke him in ourselves and I was the first person to ride him, considering I had never had a riding lesson in my life at this point it was quite an achievement. I done one full season of shows with him and collected a few rosette along the way before I outgrew him & sold him on to a little boy who had fallen in love with him after seeing him at some shows.

My cousin riding Thunder at a show

My cousin riding Thunder at a show

The next major influence was Clover, a 14hh Bay mare who taught me all about stickability & how to ride on, if she thought you weren’t paying attention coming into a fence she’d stop & loved nothing better than to throw a bucking fit when you were least expecting it. We used to terrify the poor instructors in Pony Club, who I think had visions of me getting killed off her, but apart from a dislocated elbow I enjoyed every minute of it!

My first horse was Dan a wee 15hh Bay Gelding who bucked me off everytime I sat on him, until I figured out he didn’t like having his girth tightened, if I left it loose enough that I could fit my fist between it & him he was perfect. Got me some interesting looks at shows when I’d head in to jump a 1m10 or 1m20 course with a unbelievably loose girth, did my balance the world of good though. Best horse ever though, remember jumping a 1m20 class & coming into the 2nd last fence, which happened to be a double he tripped & I almost came off & the reins went over his head, I managed to stay on, he stood on the reins & broke them, but proceeded to jump through the double with me barely back in the saddle & then as there was only 1 fence left I grabbed the remains of the right rein & managed to pull him into the last fence which he also jumped, to huge applause, for a clear round! One woman said to me afterwards that she seen him heading into the double with the reins broke & she had to turn away as she thought we were going to kill ourselves!

And of course I can’t leave out Tizzy, my current superstar, typical chestnut mare in the stable & to handle or hack out, but show her a fence and she’s happy and won’t put a foot wrong. A shadow on the round while out hacking is cause for a major meltdown, but you could have a fireworks display going off next to the SJ arena & she wouldn’t bat an eyelid as long as she had fences to jump.


About Tullavilla

A long time horse owner returning to riding after an 8 year break. Currently back competing at Riding Club level in Show Jumping & occasionally Dressage.

2 responses »

  1. Sounds like you’ve had some truly memorable characters to partner & learn from. What an experience jumping 1m20 without reins and loose girth!
    You really are a legend 😀

    • Tullavilla says:

      Poor Dan I think was the legend not me I just closed my eyes & hoped for the best, most other horses would’ve stopped! I also think if your saddle fits & you’ve got good balance then your girth doesn’t need to be terribly tight 😉

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