Racing debuts aged 69, bucket lists and other things the horse world is talking about

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

  • 1.Rather dashing

    A 69-year-old rider who only took up side-saddle four years ago took part in her first race at a point-to-point meeting, loved it and intends to do it again — and go faster next time. Belinda Wilkins and her part-bred Connemara Maisie had “never got out of a slow canter” without a leg on each side until four weeks ago but some concentrated training, and persuasion of her family, paid off and they took part in the side-saddle dash this weekend.

    Read about this line of side-saddle riders

    2. Bucket-list goals

    The above side-saddle race was one thing ticked off Belinda Wilkins’ bucket list — but there are plenty of other things you might want to try your hand at. We’ve gathered a list of 40 things, including side-saddle riding, horseback safaris, leading up winners and falling off in the water jump, that any equestrian might want to have ticked off the list.

    How many have you done?

    3. Golden oldies

    A new class for veteran horses and ponies has been added to the SEIB Search for a Star (SFAS) showing series for this season. The championship will be for animals aged 16 years and older, and it is the first SFAS class that has no amateur restrictions on the horses, ponies and riders taking part. There will be five qualifiers throughout the showing season, from April to August, culminating in a final in November 2022.

    Find out more about the thinking behind the new class

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