They have an ‘addiction’ to show ponies and a penchant for picking out the stars of the future; meet David Jinks and Adam Forster, the Cheshire-based show producers who head up the Jinks Show Team.
Check out the full interview with Adam and David in this week’s issue (25 October) of H&H magazine, out now.
1. Starting young
While Adam rode show ponies up through the BSPS ranks before competing at Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) for the first time aged 16, David was raised on his parents’ yard at the team’s current base in Cheshire. His parents Richard and Angela — who are still an integral part of the yard today — ran a racehorse stud.
2. Learning from the best
Both credit their past employers for teaching them the tricks of the trade, which have enabled them to succeed in the industry. After leaving school, Adam was a working public at Carl Hester’s dressage yard, before working for several producers include David Tatlow. As well as a stint working on a showing yard in Australia, David worked for Robert Walker and show pony producers Ron and Debbie Thomas, before the pair went to work together at the Emmerson Show Team. They went solo in 2012.
3. A rainbow of rides
Not ones to be type cast, the pair’s 24 stables are filled with an assortment of different horses and ponies. “We love and mainly wanted to produce plaited ponies,” said David. “But we do have several different types, including riding horses, a traditional coloured and a Fell pony stallion.” Their versatility is displayed in the impressive wall of show photographs in the yard office.
4. Team work makes the dream work
Team Jinks at their base of Grange Farm near Winford in Cheshire.“We couldn’t do it without our team,” said Adam. Lindsaymarie Boynton is the yard’s head girl and has been with them from the start. Adam added: “She is amazing. You honestly don’t even have to think it and the lorry is packed ready for a show.”
As well as two part-time staff, Sophie and Ellie, Team Jinks also hires 19-year-old show rider Charlotte Grooby, who rides all the intermediates and 15 hand hunter ponies. “Charlotte is a real talent and is so passionate,” said David, who adds that her dad Nick Grooby is the team’s brilliant farrier.
They also credit Angela and Richard Hulbert for their constant support.
The pair have been supported by TopSpec, Black Country Saddles and Supreme Products for the past few years and have recently welcomed Free Step to their list of supporters.
6. 2018 was one to remember…
For all the right reasons. After winning the Royal International (RIHS) show pony championship and taking reserve supreme with Isabella Whittle and the 14.2h Moluccas Bengal Beauty, the team had a stellar BSPS summer championships where they amassed 18 wins — including two HOYS tickets — two supremes, six championships and six reserves. This was a month before HOYS where they had 19 classes to contend and ended their NEC trip with a win and championship, four seconds and various other top 10 placings. At the BSPS Heritage championships, Julie Clare’s Fell stallion Lunesdale Dixie and Christina Gough qualified for the 2018 Olympia final.
7. Diamond in the rough
Reigning 2018 HOYS coloured champion The Magpie boasts a real rags to riches story. Clare Lupton’s traditional horse ‘Pie’ — who gave team Jinks their first HOYS championship — was found tethered on a beach in Ireland. “Pie was being looked after by travellers when Claire was looking for a coloured pony,” said Adam. “She sent me a photo of him looking really rough, but I could see he had some sort of potential so I told her to bring him to the yard. The rest is history. He is a horse of a lifetime.”
8. Other side of the fence
Both Adam and David are affiliated judges. Adam sits on BSPS ride and Retraining of Racehorse (RoR) panels and David judges BSPS classes and is on the RoR conformation panel.
9. 12 month rota
Novice rides will be up and ready to start work for the following season straight after HOYS every year. “They are backed before HOYS and then once that’s over they come back in to start proper ridden work. They will be ready for the first novice shows after Christmas and then hopefully the start of the qualifiers in March. You have to be so prepared,” enthused Adam.
10. The Aussie way
During his time is Australia, David picked up of the different way shows are judged across the pond: “In Australia, all the competitors do the go round and then the judges pick out 10 they like and the rest don’t get to perform a show. I think it placed great emphasis on the importance of the go-round, which a lot of people dismiss when so many classes aren’t pulled due to the use of marks.”
11. Breeding for the future
Breeding under the Swanlow prefix, the pair, alongside Richard and Angela, have bred HOYS finalists including the first ridden Swanlow Lucky May and the 15hh hunter pony Swanlow Supernova. They aim to breed hacks in the future.
12. A life without horses
While both admit they are ‘completely addicted’ to ponies, David said if he was to pursue a career out of the horse world, he would like be a teacher while Adam said he would head to the world of theatre.
For all the latest equestrian news and reports, don’t miss Horse & Hound magazine, out every Thursday