We are so excited to announce our September ROM for 2019. Sam has been dominating in the H/J rings and someone we are very proud to have join our ROM squad!
Check out our interview with him below!
1. How did you enter the Equestrian Industry?
A: I began riding and competing seriously later in my teenage year, then when I was 19 I rode for a summer with John French. This really opened my eyes to a higher level of competition. Following this I moved to Kris Cheyne, where I worked with Kris for 6 years. This without a doubt was the most influential time in my career, showing competitively in rated hunter sections, and all the way through my first handful of FEI 2* grand prix. Kris is still a good friend and mentor and during my tenure there I gained valuable experience in all aspects of the business and further my riding career.
2. What is your first memory you have with horses?
A: My mother introduced us to horses and ponies, we had a small farm and breeding operation, as well as a small lesson/ show business. I can recall learning to ride on a small pony named Princess, in a western saddle in our front barn yard.
3. Did you always know that you would be working with horses as a profession?
A: I have always wanted to do horses in some capacity. Later in my teenage years I stopped playing hockey and rugby and began to take riding more seriously. My mother continued to operate a small show stable, I always liked having young horses and developing them for sale. So I would say yes, it has taken some time to figure out exactly how I wanted to work with horses and the business.
4. What does an average day look like for you?
A: I’ll let you know once I have one!! We have a great group of people now, clients and people who work with us, so that takes a lot of stress out of things. Typically we all help work at least until the main barn is mucked, then sometimes we have different things on the go. We have a couple riders so I personally would ride 6-8 horses and then work on whatever else needs to be done. We do a fair amount of sale horses so there are always trials, quarantine horses, ship in’s to keep us busy.
5. What are the most common challenges you face?
A: Time is a very precious resource, for which once lost it can never be recovered. We have a lot on the go, and with developing infrastructure on our farm to host horse shows it has been very busy. I am thankful for the group of people around me, that have allowed for us to continue with business on all fronts. Secondly I would say it’s always a struggle trying to be better, get better horses and develop yourself.
6. DO you have any suggestions for young riders aspiring to become professional riders?
A: You had better be damn sure. I routinely feel as if ‘that was the hardest thing I've ever done’ and even after just 3 1⁄2 years at the farm id say now I don’t bother keeping track. If this seems like something you’d be ok with and are willing to work that hard, surround yourself with the best people possible that you have the most confidence and trust in.
7. What are some of the most common challenges you face with your riding?
A: I am always striving to be better, I would say its time between having to make a living, and being able to develop yourself and still be a student. This balance is difficult. As well as getting into the position where your sitting on quality horses.
8. If you could spend a day doing a different sport, what would it be and why?
A: I played hockey pretty competitively and I always miss it, I believe a few hours practice and a scrimmage would be a great day
9. If you weren’t in the Equestrian Industry, what do you think you would be doing instead and why? (career wise)
A: I have had many jobs, I think if i had nothing to do with horses I would find a way to operate a couple business that work together. Example operate a landscaping company, and buy and sell houses.
10. What accomplishment are you most proud of within the Equestrian Industry? (Does not have to be show related)
A: I have been fortunate to ride some exceptional horses, we have won a few rider bonuses, open jumper circuit champion. However I think I am the most proud of our facility. we recently have added to it and have 3 show rings and run a few gold and silver rated shows. As well our improvements allow us to develop horses and train very specifically and in a way that allows our horses and riders to be competitive and always improving.
11. The most memorable horse which you have owned or ridden is _____ and why?
A: Of course our lovely mare Shaia De Macheco. She has many wins at the grand prix level. there are a handful of shows she has won the welcome and grand prix the same week, as well as winning the open welcome, modified grand prix and grand prix one time at Caledon Equestrian Park. Shaia is 17 yrs old by kannan, and the thing about her is her heart. She tries as hard as she can every class, she's truly a winner and she gives 110% every time.
12. What is the one thing you can never go to a horse-show without? (i.e. lucky socks)
A: I try not to be superstitious, I try to be prepared with all my equipment, have my horse ready to compete and have an organized plan in the stable. These things are within control, then if something goes wrong hopefully we can see why and act accordingly for next time.
13. Do you have any horse-show rituals? (other than getting Tim’s at 4am)
A: Again I don’t believe in much ‘voodoo’ horse training. be organized, be on time(or early), be prepared.
14. What is your favourite post horse-show thing to do? (i.e. relax with a glass of wine, unpack the trailer etc.)
A: My favourite time is once everything is done and the horses have their night hay, I like to have a beer and sit in the aisle. It is peaceful when the horses are calm and it allows time to think and mentally prepare yourself and amend tomorrows plan if needed.
15. Does your horse have a favourite treat? If so, what is it?
A: I am not much of a carrot feeder. My horses do get some treats but not anything in particular. As a result they are well mannered, and well cared for.
16. What do you like to do when you manage to get some time off and away from the barn?
A: This doesn't happen very often. I like to spend time with my family and friends. I do enjoy to barbecue while the weather is nice.
17. Describe your dream vacation (does not have to be horse related)
A: I think i would like to go to Bora Bora and rent a little cabin out on the beach. There are many amazing places in the world, definately somewhere with a beach!!
18. What are you most grateful for at your barn?
A: The people we have now are a really fantastic group. All very hard working and between us all we have a very diverse skill set. I believe this is important in business to be successful.
19. Describe the funniest wardrobe malfunction that you have had when riding?
A: I was riding a 9 year old horse in the Grand Prix, my tie had come out of my coat early in the class. then jumping the second to last line the top couple buttons ripped off my coat. So I am undressing as going around and due to all the flapping around my horse can see out of the corner of his eye and spooks and nearly turns the wrong way in the end of the ring. Luckily I was able to get him focused and finish up with a very good result.
20. What is your go-to late night snack?
A:I am not much of a snacker, but I can eat a lot of popcorn. If I was actually hungry I would say almonds or chocolate almonds, I don’t typically eat a lot of junk food.
Would you rather... (bold one)
Be forced to show in paddock boots and polos or Hunter rain boots?
Show in a sleeveless shirt or a bright neon green show coat?
Fall in the warm-up ring or go into the ring with a very mud covered horse?
Split your breeches in the ring or have your reins break mid-ride?
Have your horse refuse to stop or not even make it down the shoot?
Swim in the ocean with your horse or travel the mountains via horseback?