Happy Chinese New Year!
If a predetermined equestrian career wasn’t already on the cards, surely this is the icing on the cake? We expect they’ll be on a horse before they can walk or talk.
And the proof is in the pudding. We’ve raided our birthday book and found a treasure trove of horsey heroes who were born in a year of the horse.
Take racing’s Willie Carson (1942), Brough Scott (1942) and Choc Thornton (1978) — has being born in the year of the horse been a helping hand in their dazzling careers on the track?
Other equestrian household names include eventing’s Nick Gauntlett (1978) and Ian Stark (1954), or showjumper William Funnell (1966).
But what is being born in the Chinese year of the horse really meant to mean?
Chinese New Year — for which the main celebrations will happen today across mainland China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and other Asian countries — is linked to the Chinese Zodiac calendar, where each year is represented by a different animal.
The belief is that you share the attributes of the animal associated to the year that you were born.
So while you might associate your horse with greed or irrational behaviour, the official line is that if you’re born in the Chinese year of the horse, you’ll be energetic, bright and intelligent.
Add to that good communication skills, being popular and talented and it looks like you’re onto a winner.
But it’s not all plain sailing. Those born in a horse year can also be impatient and hot-blooded.
Whether being born in the year of the horse is your ticket to ride round Badminton or not, we’d certainly take it over the year of the pig, rat or ox — and it sounds like a good excuse to have a party.