Welcome to my first blog for Equi-Trade. For those who don’t know me, I’ll give you a quick introduction. My name is Natasha Swales, I am a 27 (soon to be 28!) year old show jumper and I am currently based in South Oxfordshire. I say currently based, as I am married to someone in the British Army, so at any point we could be picked up and dropped pretty much any place in the UK!
I have ridden since I was four years old, and started off my riding life in a riding school, before moving to loan ponies and eventually a pony of my own. For several years I terrorised most of the poor members and their mothers in my local Pony Club with my totally unsuitable mounts and tended to inspect the ground at any available opportunity.
Fast forward twenty three and a half years, and not much has changed except my ability to keep a horse between myself and the ground, well, most of the time anyway. I have been seriously lucky to have worked for the likes of James Fisher and Quainton Stud, and have ridden some incredible horses who have taught me the intricacies of both riding and managing horses of the highest calibre. I’ve produced my own horses in British Showjumping classes up to 1.35m, and have jumped a cross country fence when forced. And I mean seriously forced. Solid fences make me feel nauseous!
I currently have one horse of my own, a totally beautiful grey mare named Mary. If you’ve not seen pictures and videos of Mary strutting her stuff on Facebook, you may be forgiven for not realising that she is very well named, as she does enjoy being contrary from time to time.
Mary was purchased for less than the price of a (insert supermarket chain here) meal deal, and for good reason. She had a rather well established habit of rearing vertically at any given opportunity. You asked me to canter? Rear. A leaf moved? Rear. I’ve had too many days off! Rear. I’ve worked too many days in a row. Rear. It’s been a seriously long 18 months with her, but this week she won three Discovery (1m) classes at Addington Manor in Buckinghamshire. I have seriously high hopes for this horse, and cannot wait to see what the future holds for her!
Well, that’s me in a nutshell! Apart from a minor cat obsession, a love/hate relationship with the English weather and being constantly sleep deprived, there’s probably not a lot more to tell.
These blogs are going to (hopefully) give you an insight into my life with horses, talk about some taboo subjects, focus on new products and give you access to some very interesting people. I’d love to hear your feedback, and please feel free to follow me on social media under @she.rides.twd.
Make sure you follow Equi-Trade on social media to keep up to date on their newest offers and competitions.
Until next time!