In 2021, breeder Lisha Leeman of the Kellythorpe Stud achieved her lifelong ambition of breeding a Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) winner. Not only did her beloved Kellythorpes Obsession capture the riding horse championship with her son-in-law, Frazer Atherden, but her 128cm show pony Kellythorpes Tiny Dancer won her class with Cate Kerr before standing reserve children’s riding pony of the year.
Ahead of the 2022 Showing Special (24 March issue), H&H went to visit Lisha and her family to see what goes on behind the scenes at the Kellythorpe Stud.
Home of HOYS champion
Frazer Atherden, who is married to Lisha’s daughter, Janay, schools 2021 riding horse of the year Kellythorpes Obsession (Bam Bam), who is Lisha’s pride and joy.
“It’s not every day you get to see your son-in-law trot the centre line at HOYS on your home-bred,” says Lisha.
Stables fit for champions
The Leeman’s yard is based in Essex. The stables are filled with both show and breeding horses, carefully selected and produced for their genetics.
The tack room
No competitive yard is complete without an ultra-organised tack room where bridles and saddles can be accessed with ease.
Welcome to Kellythorpe
Lisha has an eye for the dramatic, as displayed in the rosettes and sashes offered in the Leeman-sponsored classes as well as in some of the features at home, including the glamorous entrance gates.
Lisha is quick to praise her hard working and knowledgable team for the successes of the stud and show horses.
“I’m so proud of my team and we all have the same opinion and outlook on showing,” says Lisha.
The next generation
Lisha tends to youngstock out in the field. Lisha also has three grandchildren; her future jockeys for her future champions.
Travelling in style
Kellythorpe have two Oakley Horseboxes, including an Oakley Supremacy which was custom made for the team in 2021.
One to watch
Frazer puts riding horse Caunton Devil De Hus through her paces. The mare stood supreme champion on her ridden debut last year.
Janay and Frazer, who have two children together, share Lisha’s passion for the stud.
Lisha shows Bam Bam his prize — The Michael Gray Memorial Trophy — he scooped at HOYS 2021.
Lisha and her husband, Richard, have also injected considerable amounts of sponsorship into the showing world, including through the Kellythorpe Leading Breeder and Kellythorpe Leading Sire of the Year at HOYS.
A relaxed atmosphere
The horses at Kellythorpe enjoy a varied life, and it shows in their outlook in the ring.
Don’t miss the full interview in this week’s issue of Horse & Hound magazine, out now.
You might also be interested in:
Horse & Hound magazine, out every Thursday, is packed with all the latest news and reports, as well as interviews, specials, nostalgia, vet and training advice. Find how you can enjoy the magazine delivered to your door every week, plus options to upgrade your subscription to access our online service that brings you breaking news and reports as well as other benefits.