NRM Rider Questions – Sophie Scott

Q – Tell us a little bit about your team for the season ahead

A - This season I will be competing in mainly the show jumping series classes and possibly will do Junior Horse Equitation in the Show Hunter. My team this season consists of Three Grand Prix Ponies - “Benrose Playtime” “Hez Sweet As” and “Waitohoi Belle” I also have young one “Benrose Eclipse” who is showing promise. My horse “Benrose Rockstar” I will aim at doing 1.15m and Junior Rider Classes.

Q - In preparation for the season, when do your horses come into work after their winter spell?

A – Our team came back into work beginning of July, we bring them in slowly starting with walking and trotting and fltness work for the first three weeks, heaps of fitness work, hill rides before we even start jumping them. The Grand Prix Ponies had 5 weeks of flat work before we start jumping them again. Our young one has been ridden over winter and jumped in preparation to see if she is good enough to keep and compete.

Q - While your horses have been having a break what have you been keeping busy with? IE overseas training and travel, winter sports, hunting eventing etc?

A - Over the winter we hunt with the Waiararapa Hunt Club, we hunted “Kapahaka” as she is an amazing hunter just loves it and it’s a break for her from the Show Hunter. We have been doing lots of dressage lessons. We have been to a few winter show jumping days with the young ones and just started having lessons with Sally Clarke.

Q - How long is the lead up to your first show?

A - Our lead up to our first show is 10 weeks.

Q - What is your work plan with the horses during this time? IE- how much conditioning work, flat work, jump training happens on a weekly basis?

A - Our horses are on quite a strict schedule, they all get ridden 6 days a week, the ones that know how to jump only get jumped twice a week, heaps of grid work and athletic jumping work, we don’t jump big fences, around 1.05m with them all. Once they are competing we will increase the heights. But really just to get the muscles working and getting them sharp. They get hill ridden twice a week and dressage schooled three days a week one of those sessions has a little jumping at the end and the other day they jump. We always take them for a walk out after the dressage schooling session to cool them down, a walk down the road and back s it is on a slight incline up a hill.

Q – Tell us about your feeding plan at this time of the year, does it change during the season?

A - Yes our feeding plan over the winter is different than in the season. We feed heaps of hay, twice daily approx. 4 slabs per horse as we don t have a lot of grass. They get feed twice daily, ours love Sweetfeed & Equi-Jewel to help keep weight on and chaff. Most days we also boil barley as it’s great to give at night if it is wet cold and rainy, they probably don’t need it but it makes mum feel good as their dinner is warm. Quantity’s wise, they all get different amounts as they are all different conditions.

When we are competing we use Sweetfeed, LowGI and Equi -Jewel (only on some) fibre pro (as easy to take to shows) and Sugarbeet.

Q – What are your goals for the coming SJ season?

A - I would like to focus on the Grand Prix Pony Series and junior equitation SH. If my horse goes well I will do Junior Rider Series as well, I would like to get another horse that is more of a show jumper which I will do when I sell a pony.

Q – The most useful tip or trick you have for getting prepared for the show jumping season?

A - To be organised, make sure I have all my gear sorted for each horse. To have the truck with everything I need so not having to take gear backwards and forth during the week after a weekend competing. I make sure I am fit as well, I ride heaps as I have 6 horses in work for this season so I have to be fit.

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