H&H’s racing editor and hunting enthusiast Catherine Austen met up with Richard Walker, who specialises in preparing horses for the hunting field, to help her prepare her young horse Molly for the challenges she will face this season.

Find out how she got on in the current issue of Horse & Hound (2 October 2008), on sale now.

Richard’s top tips for hunting young horses

  • Have an extra port at the meet, and avoid leaving in the crush
  • When jumping, read the ground and the situation. Either get there before the crowd or wait until it has gone
  • Don’t get too close to everyone else if you can help it
  • Don’t race. Keep a contact with the horse’s mouth and keep it balanced
  • Jump to the side of hunt jumps, rather than the middle, to avoid the worst of the chopped-up ground
  • Go slowly through gates, and stop and pat the horse when you’ve closed them
  • Pack up and go home when the horse starts to get excited and boil over

Read this feature in full in the 2 October 2008 issue of Horse & Hound, or to purchase a back issue contact 01733 385170