Pre-Badminton rider frighteners and other things the horse world is talking about

Horse & Hound’s daily debrief, brought to you every weekday morning

  • Eventing rewards

    Five-star winner Piggy March is H&H’s newest rider columnist, and in her first column, she reflects on Thoresby as a replacement for Belton; the latter boasted an “imposing” course and, Piggy says, “we need a few rider-frighteners” before Badminton. Talking of Britain’s first CCI5* of the year, she says it is “thrilling” to have it so soon, adding: “It seems crazy that I’m still the reigning champion; Vanir Kamira won it at 14 and returns as a 17-year-old. It’s sad for owners that these wonderful horses have missed Badmintons while in their prime. But we are fit and healthy and must look forward. The field is exceptional and we’re all hoping for a great week that will put eventing back on the map as one of the iconic British sporting fixtures.”

    Read all Piggy’s thoughts 

    The right language

    Social licence and horse welfare were the key themes in the recent International Forum for the Aftercare of Racehorses (IFAR) 2022 conference, and the main points were communication, education and opportunities for horses after their careers on the track. One key issue could be the language used to talk about former racehorses, as “the view that they are ‘damaged goods’ and they ‘need rescuing’ diminishes their opportunities in their post-racing career.”

    Is it time to retire the term “retired”?

    Changing places

    A jockey who broke his back in a fall last month is still having winners — but as a trainer instead of being on board. Jack Teal said that he is “getting a great kick out of watching his horses”, since he was “buried at home in the arena off a pony” he was backing. “I landed flat on my back, heard a big crunch and thought it didn’t sound too good. The fracture is pretty stable as far as those things can be, but I’m not too sure when I’ll be back on a horse.”

    Find out how Jack’s doing as a trainer

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