Young Eventing rider, Ella Shore was named as Beci Equi's first Brand Ambassador earlier this year. It's been a few months since we caught up with Ella, so we thought it was about time we found out what she has been up to, and what her plans are for the future.
How's training going with your horse, Eliva Frontier?
Eliva Frontier or 'Missy' only turns 5 next month, and I've had her for roughly 9 months now. We've had our ups and downs, plus between me being extremely busy with work and her getting a splint earlier in the year, I haven't been able to do as much work with her as I would have liked. Consequently, her training has suffered a little bit. I'm not letting this worry me though, as she is only a baby, and I don't want to over face her at her age. Plus I think it's good to give her a chance to process what she has learnt so far.
I've taken a different approach with Missy to previous horses. With some of my past horses, I've set shorter deadlines with where I expect them to be with their training, but I've just taken things as they come with Missy. I feel like she has benefitted from this approach, especially as I have put a lot more focus on correct flat work principles before doing too much jumping. I think her progress in the last month has been amazing, and is definitely reflective of all of the basics we have been concentrating on.
Life must be busy...how do you keep yourself motivated to ride, especially through the winter months?
That's an understatement!
I leave for work at 5:30am and don't generally get home until after 5:30pm, so I don't get to ride as much as I'd like. I must say, having an arena with lights, and a supportive family definitely helps.
I use riding as my 'down time' from my busy day to day life, but I genuinely enjoy riding Missy, so I really look forward to getting home and having a nice ride with her.
I also find that setting little goals, whether it be with her training or competition gives me something to constantly aim for and try to achieve. In saying that, I try not to beat myself up if I don't get there... I'd rather take a bit longer and get it right.
You come from a very horsey family...tell us a bit about them
Where do I start!
My Mum, Cristy, rode when she was younger and lived in Kalgoorlie. She gave up riding 20 years before me and my sisters became involved with horses though.
My Grandad, Ron, breeds Thoroughbred racehorses as a hobby, so we have the opportunity to get some of the slow ones that he has bred, of which Missy is one of them!
My middle sister Olivia is 3 1/2 years younger than me, and is currently competing in Eventing at 2* level. She won Eventing In The Park Diamond Class last year at the age of 15 and is taking her riding very seriously. She currently has 6 horses in work at various levels. My youngest sister Eva is another 18 months younger than Olivia and is competing 1* at the moment with her Clydesdale X, Thumper.
My Dad isn't from a horsey background, but he tries his hardest to help out, and just quietly...I think he is more competitive than all of us girls put together!
Without having a supportive family, riding just wouldn't be possible with the long hours that I work. I'm so very grateful for how much they all help me out.
Your horse Missy is an Off The Track Thoroughbred. What do you love about these horses?
Missy, along with 95% of my previous horses, including Eliva Kokoda ( my now retired 3* horse) have all be off the track. I love the Thoroughbred breed and how willing they are. Some of them are harder to retrain than others. It can take a bit to get them to understand that everything isn't a race and to just slow it all down. The first couple of competitions with the PA/loud speaker system can be an interesting experience!
Thoroughbreds definitely have their challenges, but you can't beat a good one; they are agile, athletic and hold a natural level of fitness which makes it much easier when you get to the higher levels of Eventing.
What do you look for in a young event horse?
If I'm looking for a young horse, soundness is my number one requirement. The horse's conformation would have to also be relatively correct to hold up to the stresses of high level competition as an Eventer.
A horse that is athletic with a good, uphill canter will definitely catch my attention, but they must also have a keen 'can do' look in their eye. I'd want a horse that is quick footed and sharp in the mind, as they need to be able to get themselves out of trouble.
It wouldn't need to be a flash looking horse, or have the greatest bloodlines, but Eventing requires a horse to have a big heart and a good work ethic. A horse that ticks all of these boxes will be streets ahead of the rest in my book.
Any events coming up for you?
At the moment, the only competition I'm aiming for are the WA State Showjumping Championships and the Young Event Horse Champs, where Missy will compete in the 4yo class.
I'll take the rest of the year as it comes and maybe enter her in the last couple of events for the season. She's only young so there is no point pushing her too hard at her age.
What's your fave everyday riding outfit?
I'm a big fan of black, so I generally wear my Little Black Base Layer and Black Platinum Luxe Leggings when I ride. Missy has black Zandona boots and saddle blanket, so we are matchy matchy all in black!
The Denim Skintights and the Little Black Base Layer go together SO well too...it's hard to decide what to wear sometimes! I like the fact that the Luxe leggings are ultra lightweight and don't hold the water, so great for riding on wet days. They are also the first type of riding tights that I've worn that don't give me chaffing after a long ride.
What Beci Equi product do you love the most and why?
That's a hard question!
I love them all! But I do think the Bondi Bay Luxe Leggings would have to be my all time favourite - They combine two of my favourite colours together and are so comfy to ride in whilst still looking stylish.
What Beci Equi product are you most looking forward to trying in the future?
I definitely got super excited when I saw the sneak peak photos of the new Denim Skintights colour, Darkest Blue... can't WAIT for a pair of those!
I know that Competition Skintights are still in the design and testing phase but seriously cannot wait for these so I can use my Beci Equi clothing both at home and in the competition ring.
Goals for the rest of the year?
I'm hoping that all of the hard work we have been doing on correct basics will pay off at the Young Event Horse Champs. I'm not really too concerned with where we place, and to be honest I will be proud of her even if we come last.
A big goal for me is to finish on my dressage score at an EA event...it doesn't sound that difficult, but for me, it would be a major achievement!
Looking forward I would love to use the summer to get missy ready for EvA95 in 2020... I would be very happy if we could get to that point early next year.