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Who’s on washing duties? Previous Olympia champion revels in mud during his pre-season holiday

With no shows for the moment, most showing stars — both horse and human — have been enjoying some R&R at home before the season, hopefully, gears up in time for summer.

One legend of the show scene who’s certainly been making the most of his winter holiday is 2018 Olympia mountain and moorland (M&M) supreme ridden champion Banks Timber (Tim).

Joe Burke’s grey Connemara stallion, who is ridden by Lancashire-based Sandra Burton during the season, is currently serving mares in Ireland at Joe’s base.

“Tim does love being home,” says Joe. “He associates being here with covering mares which keeps him interested. His incredible temperament makes it easy for him to switch from covering stallion to show pony when he’s back with Sandra”

Tim’s enviable tally also includes a win and championship at the Royal International (RIHS), a second at Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) and an apperance in the Cuddy in-hand final.

“He was back with Sandra last summer but only managed to get out to two shows and spent most of his time enjoying hacks and forest rides,” adds Joe. “He came home at the back end of last year, pre-Brexit to avoid the uncertainty around travel. His 2020 offspring were very special. He will be standing at stud again this year and has quite a few mares booked in, some travelling from the UK.

“He will be standing alongside his son Aniar Cashel and grandson Alexander Cashel, his nephew Manor Duke and our two other clifden supreme champions Currachmore Cashel and Drumbad Fletcher Moss, so it’s an exciting time.”

“As you can see, he’s enjoying the down time! I’m starting to hack him out a couple of time a week to get him ready for some of the early shows.”

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