Fam­ily mat­ters

NZ Horse & Pony - - Editor's Letter - ROWAN DIXON, EDI­TOR

When I was a teenager, I could have thought of noth­ing bet­ter than be­ing born into an eques­trian fam­ily. My mother in par­tic­u­lar was amaz­ingly sup­port­ive of her daugh­ter’s out-ofthe-blue pas­sion for horses, and did ev­ery­thing she could on a school teacher’s salary to let me ride. But I’d have given al­most any­thing to have had the for­tune to be raised on a farm like sev­eral of my pony club friends, with par­ents who them­selves rode, who could have helped ev­ery step of the way.

It did al­ways make me won­der, though, if chil­dren from these deeply horsey dy­nas­ties ride be­cause it’s ex­pected of them, rather than be­cause it’s their au­then­tic pas­sion.

For this month’s cover story, which is partly to cel­e­brate Mother’s Day on May 8, writer He­len Firth met three New Zealand mother-and-daugh­ter com­bos who share a rid­ing pas­sion.

And it was fas­ci­nat­ing to find out that the com­mon thread be­tween all three is that none of the moth­ers (who them­selves were each born into eques­trian fam­i­lies) in­sisted, ex­pected or even par­tic­u­larly cared if their daugh­ters rode or not. It had to come from a gen­uine de­sire and com­mit­ment, and in each case in our story − even­ter Ginny Thomp­son, show jumper Emma Wat­son and dres­sage rider Tessa van Bruggen − the young women have done the hard yards, and are now reap­ing the re­wards. It’s a ter­rific read, and I’m sure you will en­joy it. Also in this is­sue is a mother-daugh­ter story with a twist. Claire Wil­son’s in­ter­view is with a Taranaki mum who, af­ter many years sup­port­ing her show jump­ing daugh­ter, has her­self taken up com­pet­ing. Rather neatly, her daugh­ter now comes to shows as her mother’s groom and sup­port crew − it’s a real role re­ver­sal!

Thanks to all of you who have sent mes­sages and ex­tremely kind com­ments about how much you are en­joy­ing our print mag­a­zine and all the up-to-the-minute event and show cov­er­age on our web­site. We’ve also been load­ing lots of awe­some sto­ries from our archive; with 57 years of his­tory (a grand to­tal of 684 is­sues in­clud­ing this one) that’s a won­der­fully rich trove of con­tent to share.

If you haven’t yet checked it out, you’ll find the site at www.horse­and­pony­mag.com

Have a won­der­ful month.

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