Hannah won a photoshoot the Knebworth Dressage Championships earlier this year, after one of my past clients had asked me to donate a gift voucher. So last week I went off to Hertford to meet her and her four horses. Hannah works at Sandridgebury Farm and is very lucky to look after, ride and compete four of her bosses horses.
The first horse to step into the spotlight was four year-old gelding, Jack. Jack, the black horse with the wide blaze is such a sweetie but finds life incredibly traumatic. As far as he is concerned, everything is scary and out to get him. He has just started his journey into his affiliated dressage career and prefers to have his best friend Dior, who we meet later on in the shoot, by his time, to protect him, at all times.
Our second model, and a total diva, was the beautiful Slaney. Slaney has been owned by Hannah’s boss since she was about a year old. She had quite a traumatic start to life when she broke her jaw in a field accident as a two year-old. Hannah said that she made no fuss whatsoever and the only reason they knew that there was anything wrong was because she wouldn’t eat. What a poppet. However, Slaney has made a full recovery and at four years-old has no problem accepting a bit or being ridden.
Third in the line-up was Dessy, the grey mare. Clearly, Dessy was born to be in front of the camera, because she loved it! She did not drop her pose from start to finish. And with legs up to her ears, she’s definitely supermodel materal. Dessy, who’s real name is Desert Pearl, is a 16.2hh, ten year-old, ex-steeplechaser and is still owned by her racing syndicate, but on loan to Hannah’s boss. Dessy is now enjoying a career in showing and dressage after having some time off to be a yummy mummy.
And last, but very definitely not least, we met Dior. This chap is a total diamond. Dior is six years old and has spent a large amount of those six years growing into his rather large frame. And it seems now that he’s ready, Dior is a bit of a multi-talented superstar, competing in affiliated dressage, freestyle to music classes and side-saddle! It was him who won Hannah the shoot at the dressage champs. Hannah tells me that she calls him ‘Mr. Reliable’ as he’s a real people pleaser and has such a relaxed and happy attitude to life.
Thank you, Hannah, for introducing me to your fabulous horses, all so different but equally as gorgeous. I had a lovely afternoon and hope you guys did too.
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