We recently caught up with Katy Green a showing rider based in Warwickshire to find out how she keeps her senior horse Jack (I'm a Diamond) looking so well.
Q- Can you tell us a bit about Jack?
“Jack without a question has been my horse of a lifetime and put me on the map as a Working Hunter rider. He took me straight from the pony ranks to the top in the horse classes very quickly.
He is an 18 year old Irish Sports Horse by the famous jumping sire Ricardo Z out of a Premium Irish Draught mare, Diamond Commons. I bought him as a project whilst I was still at University 12 years ago. As a youngster he was strong and opinionated but always 100% honest and brave (sometime too much so!) but I soon realised that I could never sell him.
He won Hickstead several times (Derby meeting and RIHS), Royal Windsor twice, Working Hunter Grand Prix at Scope Festival. If I’m honest I can’t think of a County Show he has not won or become Champion. He has won far too many Championships to list ...but can still get giddy in a presentation and as he absolutely LOVES the job.
Jack also show jumps up to Foxhunter and has also evented up to Novice- as you can see absolutely nothing phases him. He has always been a big track outdoor specialist.”
Q-How do you keep Jack so fit and well?
“I think that Jack has stayed so fit and well is down to a couple of things. Firstly, he has always been fed on SPILLERS™. He is currently fed SPILLERS Alfalfa-Pro Fibre, SPILLERS High Fibre Cubes and SPILLERS Senior + Supple Balancer we sometimes substituted the SPILLERS High Fibre Cubes for SPILLERS Slow Release Energy Cubes if he is having a busy spell.
The second reason why I believe he looks so well is because he truly does like to look after himself. He sleeps flat out all night and goes back to bed after breakfast for a snooze every day and does not want to get up until he is ready!”
Q- What is Jacks work-load like?
“He has regular and varied work including hacking and apart from gridwork and going showjumping he doesn’t jump much at home. Between shows we mainly focus on Jack’s flatwork. All my horses are ridden 5-6 days a week to ensure we maintain their fitness levels.
Jack like most horses likes to go out in the field which he does every day, but will always let me know when he is ready to come in! At the beginning of lockdown, I turned Jack out one morning and just felt something was not quite right, he went downhill fast and within a couple of hours and after unbelievable treatment from my vet (Walnutt Hill Equine) for severe colic he underwent surgery for a strangulated lipoma. The prognosis was not great and I was devastated. But the old boy came home a week later, where we had rigged up cameras to watch him 24/7 and fed him sloppy SPILLERS High Fibre Cubes and a bit of SPILLERS Alfalfa Pro-Fibre and slowly reintroduced a normal diet.
I promised him that if he survived he could retire, but he had other ideas and after a careful and slow rehab at home he got so annoyed to see the lorry going out without him I started to pop the odd fence, followed by a few shows and has now gone and qualified for HOYS again this year for the 11th time (reserve Champion at the BSHA Championship show) amongst a number of other wins...”
Q- What are your plans for Jack going forward?
“I plan to retire him still at the top of his game at the end of this season. I owe him everything and he has nothing left to prove but I will continue to ride him most days and he will carry on showjumping and enjoying being first in line for the polos!”
Thank you so much Katy for taking the time to speak with us about your senior horse Jack. It’s clear to see how inspiring your partnership is for other riders and how fit and well he looks. Best of luck at HOYS.