24th September 2015

Meet Tabby ahead of the first ever sidesaddle charity flat race

My name is Tabby and I’m 23 years old and currently in my final year studying medicine (avoid hospital come August!!).  I’ve been riding as long as I can remember and have managed to fit it in around medicine due to my long-suffering and supportive parents and sister. I live at home with my parents in Monmouthshire but will be moving with my 2 ex-racers this July to wherever I get a job- clearly I won’t be applying to London!

I started riding side saddle in the summer of 2013 and had a couple of lessons before deciding  to bite the bullet and get my own saddle so I could start cubbing. This was something of an induction by fire as the first thing I jumped aside out hunting was a 1m10 set of post and rail having only ever jumped a small log before.  This was on the horse who is pictured above; Dutch belongs to my boyfriend’s father who was at the time Master of the Monmouthshire. Dutch made me fall in love with side saddle completely and is the best hunter anybody could wish for. Together we went out aside all season jumping absolutely everything. Since neither of us are remotely interested in showing side saddle is a winter only occupation though we did become the first combination ever to do the Royal Welsh Interhunt relay aside and have also attempted some team chasing aside.  We also competed in the 2nd Diana of the Chase race coming second! I’ll be being supported on the day by numerous members of my local hunt and of course my other half Llywellyn who has made a heroic effort to learn about side saddle, even if I’ve never persuaded him to sit on one.

I’ll be riding my ex-pointer American Eagle (Max). Max came to England from Ireland in 2013 and had a fairly successful year pointing with some wins and plenty of placings, being trained by Andrew Pennock. I acquired him in May 2014 as he needed some time off after an injury and he has proven to be well worth the wait. He is extremely chilled at home, your granny could hack him out but he lights up when required and has had an extremely successful start to his team chasing career.

I’ve never taken part in any form of charity race before so this is an exciting first for me! Sadly I’ve seen the effects of spinal injuries both personally and in hospital whilst working and I’m very happy to be supporting such a worthwhile charity.