The horse whis­perer Pyne, Putin on an equine show

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NOW, our own Christo­pher Pyne has been called many things over the years, but this may be the first time he has been com­pared to Rus­sian strong­man Vladimir Putin.

If you had thought the only things they had in com­mon were a fa­nat­i­cal de­vo­tion to the his­tory of the ma­tryoshka doll and a killer recipe for borscht, you are sadly mis­taken. They are both also equine fanciers. Pyne posted a tweet this week of him­self in the sad­dle, all ready to go rid­ing.

In the pic­ture, the De­fence Min­is­ter looked, as is nor­mal, very pleased with him­self, though the horse did carry a vis­age of faint em­bar­rass­ment. Pos­si­bly, he won­dered why he was car­ry­ing a min­is­ter in­stead of a Mel­bourne Cup jockey.

Though, with­out want­ing to be overly crit­i­cal, Pyne does lack a cer­tain machismo when com­pared to Putin’s shirt­less pose. Not that we are sug­gest­ing Pyne tops a horse in a half-naked state. The world isn’t ready for that. But per­haps if Pyne is try­ing to buff up his image, there are a few more Putin-style tricks he could pull out of the bag. And we don’t mean in­vade New Zealand.

Vlad has been known, again top­less, to bathe in icy Rus­sian lakes and also to fish in the same nat­u­ral man­ner. He likes to play ice hockey, drive For­mula One cars, drive sub­mersibles, bob­sleigh, shoot guns, ride mo­tor­bikes and do judo.

Off the Record will be closely mon­i­tor­ing Pyne’s Twit­ter feed in com­ing weeks.

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