I have a bit of a reputation for owning and getting on well with quirky horses. So please meet our small and oddly formed team….
But first a little introduction to the canine mascots – As without these guys, morning and evening stables would be a lot less ‘interesting’.
Ranger is a 3yr old, yellow labrador. He’s headstrong, annoyingly cute and full of energy. Every morning and evening he will potter around the fields, digging holes, chasing ‘wabbits’ and making a superb job of bombproofing all of our horses. He’s your typical ‘Aga Dog’; a family pet; trained to the gun; good with the horses but is the happiest when snuggled on his sofa in front of the log burner in an evening.
Taz is a 3yr old, long haired GSD. Otherwise known as Dino Dog, Taz is honestly the biggest German Shepherd we have ever seen. He’s a head like a bear and an attitude to match. Taz comes to the yard a couple of times a week and is Rangers’ BFF. Taz is still learning how to be calm around the horses and is liable to a few brain farts still but he is cuddly, handsome and generally quite kind.
Meet the horses
Taking the Biscuit
Stable Name: Patchy Pony, Pocket Rocket
Breed: Welsh pony x Cob (She thinks she is a tb)
Age: 18 (but thinks she is 5)
Patchy has been with us since she was 8 months old and now competes in Senior Showing classes. Patchy firmly believes she is a horse and will not be told she is only 13.2hh. She competes successfully in Senior showing classes at County level but is really the ultimate all-rounder, having won in Show-Jumping, Cross-Country, Combined Training, Dressage & Workers classes. During the winter she is quite partial to a days hunting with either the local fox hound pack or Blood hounding. A true madam at heart, she will only do what she wants to do and became quite famous during a particular dressage test in which she laid down…
My Oh Mount Brown
Stable Name: Monty
Monty is a somewhat tricky customer and is owned by my sister Sarah. He is an ex-racehorse and came from Cheveral House Racehorse Rehoming in Southwell. Exceptionally hot, sensitive and stressy, Monty has thrown a fair few questions at us since he came out of racing, however his willingness to work and excellent attitude inspires us. It took a year for Sarah to find the right horse to aim towards HOYS RoR classes… But things never go to plan and so he was aimed at doing BE… Unfortunately he didn’t quite settle to dressage AND so after another change of career and we have finally found his niche Show-Jumping. Monty affiliated to BS in July and within his second outing he had picked up a second place and continues to improve in confidence and experience. We have hopes that he will eventually make a 1m10 horse and will be aimed at the RoR Challenge Classes, the RoR BS Bronze Leagues and also the RoR 3 Phase Challenge classes.
Stable Name: Classy, Jo-Be
Classy is a 16hh ex-racehorse by Reel Buddy. Failed on the flat and re-schooled to be one of the boldest and awesome cross-country rides ever (Before Monty came along!) She was Claire’s first BE prospect and has bred a foal by Amour G, a beautiful coloured stallion based in Norfolk. (More about Matilda further down) Classy is multi-disciplined in that she manages to do a little bit of everything. She represented one of our local riding clubs at the BRC dressage championships, competed up to Elementary dressage, scoring a massive 74% on one outing, competed successfully in RoR showing classes qualifying for Hickstead, did a few Riding Horse classes and also show-jumped, as well as eventing. She was never the best moving horse in the world, which is why her showing never took her as high as it could have done, however the ride she gave was breath-taking, moving her up 11 places in a county RoR class from 14th on the initial pull to stand 3rd. She was retired to have Matilda and lives at the mothers yard after retiring at a showing championships where she stood section champion. Classy is now back in work and sound – So watch this space on what she is up to!
All About Hollywood
Stable Name: Matilda
Height: Expected to make 16.2hh
Breed: TB X WB
Matilda was born in May 2016 to Classy and is by the gorgeous coloured stallion Amour G. She’s sassy, clever and rather opinionated, all qualities that we love in our horses. Our intentions will be that she will hopefully make a lovely little eventer and will likely be produced for the BYEH qualifiers if she matures well enough. A beautiful little foal that is both correct and moves beautifully (Not the most elaborate but straight and true) and we are rather excited for her future. She’s going to be just like her mother though – Highly opinionated, quick to learn and very very kind. Definitely one to watch out for.
Stable Name: Romeo, Jaws, Roe
Breed: Welsh Section C
Romeo dropped (We will come back to this word later) into our lives in 2016 and is the newest member of the Team Taylor herd. He was bought unseen from Essex, after we had spent nearly a year searching for a pony that would be good enough to contest HOYS M&M classes. In true Team Taylor spirit, nothing quite goes to plan and after declaring to the vet who was visiting that he definitely had 2 testicles, Sarah was left rather red faced when the vet told her there was just one there! We had half intended on keeping Romeo entire but it was a catch 22 with his licensing – We couldn’t get him licensed with one testicle and we couldn’t geld him properly either. So we sent him to the vets who spent a long time hunting down said missing testicle to find it hiding in his abdomen… A large vets bill later and we can officially say Romeo is no longer a proper Romeo. He arrived to us looking a bit poor so we are allowing him time in the field until his 3rd year to mature before we start him under saddle in the autumn. We are very excited about him and hope, as a 4yr old, he will make a tidy M&M WHP.
Stable Name: Oakley
Breed: ID x WB
Oakley is our first homebred out of our Irish Hunter mare, by Stanhopes Diddicoy. A tricky customer with oodles of attitude, Oakley continually threw questions that we don’t mind admitting that we don’t always have the answer to. He is big, not so much in height but wide and long and has been described as moving the QE2 around and backwards and so needed time to develop. Oakley has recently been having a few problems with ulcers. These were treated several times and has now unfortunately started head-shaking – A result of the ulcers we believe. He is currently off work and in the field.
Royal Romano – Sadly Deceased
Stable Name: GT
Height: 17hh (ish, we daren’t ever measure him!)
Age: Died as a 9yr old
GT, as he was affectionately known, was a 17hh (ish – we used to lie about actually how tall he was) Hannoverian. By Royal Blend with Rubenstein and Sir Donnerhall in his breeding. He was purchased as a wild child in 2012, virtually un-rideable and would panic ‘run’ or rear if worried about something. We use the term run as opposed to bolt as he never went blind and always retained a sense of self preservation about himself. Claire was the only person who can ride him without him running. GT competed primarily in Dressage and won a fair few few of his BD starts at both Novice and Elementary level and we had planned on moving him to Medium towards the back end of 2015. GT was a true gentleman to deal with, just a proper girl while being ridden. Everybody loved GT and he will always have a special place in our hearts. We were devastated when we made the horrible decision to have him PTS in November 2016. After sustaining a suspensory injury in 2014 and being diagnosed with navicular in both front feet in 2016, he never quite settled into field retirement. He was a horse who loved his work and was such an integral part of TT, that it seemed a shame that he shouldn’t have a mention.