New member of the Hilton Herbs Team!
We are pleased to welcome endurance rider, Julie Abbott, to our “stable” of sponsored riders in the UK, Europe and the US.
Julie Abbott lives in mid-Wales and started doing endurance riding in 2014 with her Arab gelding Gwel Y Coeds Razil who did well at Novice level but proved to have little enthusiasm once the speeds picked up at Open level. Julie describes him as a “beautiful boy but bone idle” and loaned him to a friend for her son to ride.
Julie bought her current horse, TM Valentino, aka Raf in 2017 but due to various issues did nothing with him until last year. However once Raf got going he really took to his new sport and flew round ten starts of between 32 and 45K achieving nine grade 1s (including a gold at the Home Internationals for the Welsh team in Inverness) and one grade 2.
Julie, Mike and Raf at the Home International 2018 in Scotland
Raf finished 2018 by winning the EGB Novice Championship, the Welsh Novice Championship, the AHS Novice Endurance horse trophy by a premium stallion (Rusleem) and the Novice Crabbet Endurance Championship. He also won a number of EGB regional championships in Mid and North Wales. Julie says that she and Raf have really gelled now and says that spending the winter attending her local riding club clinics has borne a lot of fruit.
Julie and Raf at Forest of Dean 2019
Julie and Raf are now in the early part of their 2019 season and have already completed a 40kms ride in April and a 66kms this month and Julie’s aim is to upgrade Raf from Open to Advanced in early 2020. She hopes they will be on the Welsh team again for the Home Internationals at the British Horse Feeds Red Dragon in October but says that will of course depend on Raf’s results in the interim. Julie says that in between endurance rides she and Raf “play” at side-saddle and a bit of dressage and jumping to ring the changes for him and keep his head sweet!
Julie lives with her partner Mike and his children. Mike and Edith (his daughter) both have horses and are starting in endurance this season. Edith already has a silver from the 2018 Home Internationals riding a borrowed horse and is very keen to contest the Pony Club Championships and Home Internationals again this year.