Since working with horses from the age of sixteen, Kylie Roddy has worked hard to achieve equestrian success within her career so far. Training at Olympic Gold Medalist Leslie Law’s yard, Kylie moved on to set up her own equestrian business not only competing at 3* level but producing youngsters together with difficult and sharp horses that need a sensitive approach.
Samantha Hobden caught up with Kylie recently in Haynet’s Chatting A Bit series to find out more about Kylie Roddy and her equestrian story:
Tell us about your childhood. Did it involve riding ponies and competing?
I started riding when I was 13 at my local riding school, Snowball Farm in Burnham, Bucks.
Until that point, I did regular kid stuff with my sister and we went to work with my mum on weekends to her hairdressing salon and helped make tea and coffee for the clients.
When did you realise that you wanted to work and compete with horses as a career?
When I was 15 I hated school but really loved riding and in that time mum had bought me a horse Kyrenejenallas Boy AKA Berry, he ended up being my Young Rider horse and we did our first 3 star together.
All equestrian sport brings highs and lows. Tell us about yours within your eventing career.
I had done two Young Rider Europeans and had done well. I then sold Kyrenejenallas Boy which was hard but financially the best thing, however, it took me a long time to come back to the sport at top level. Recovering from broken bones- I broke my back and elbow just over12 months apart and getting back to riding as good or better than before, that was a challenging time.
You particularly enjoy producing and retraining horses? Do you go with your gut feeling or should a horse have a list of requirements for competition?
A bit of both. I go with my gut to consider if the horse can be trainable and want to work with you which really helps you know if they are going to try for the rider, this is the most important thing!
Then you have to look at the job you want them to do and decide if the horse possesses the essential requirements to do that job. e.g. if the horse is a good mover but can’t gallop it’s more likely to be a dressage or show horse rather than an eventer or hunter.
Who have been your support network with your equestrian career?
I have been lucky enough to have great support through my Mum, Aunty, Sister they have been essential emotional supporters. My staff at home have always been 100% committed to the job and keeping the yard and horses in great shape. Sponsors and owners Jeremy Lawton, Susan Lawton, Neil Woodford, Madeleine Woodford, Colin Fox, Anne Fox have been massive believers, it goes without saying that they have been 110% supportive. Too many people to mention along the way that have been instrumental in helping me reach my goals and aspirations.
Which of your horses has been the “special one”?
There have been many for different reasons.
KyreneJenallas Boy- my first horse took me from learning to jump to my first 3 ***. Shearwater Billy for giving me his heart a thousand times over when going xc he jumped around some tracks that you wouldn’t believe was possible when you rode him at home. SRS Kan Do the best jumper I’ve sat on to date who makes everything feel easy, he just jumped double clear around his first 3 star.
This year we lost probably the nicest horse I have ever ridden Shearwater Bonaparte, XC he was a machine and had the best attitude he will always leave a big hole!
Which equestrian rider do you take inspiration from and why?
Nick Skelton without a doubt he has been a childhood hero and remained at the top of his sport for the duration of his riding career. His resilience to bounce back from serious/life changing injury to come back to showjumping at the highest level and remain as competitive is an inspiration to us all.
If you hadn’t had travelled down the equestrian career path, what would have been your Plan B?
I’m not academic in any way so it would have to have been a ‘doing’ career. I love making stuff so maybe a designer/inventor.
On a day off, where would we find you?
Not many of those but I’ve been to the Nirvana spa and that really relaxing I like it there.
Where do you hope to be in ten years time?
Riding my homebreds around badminton!! A lot of ifs and buts attached to that but you got to chase your dreams!! Right!!!
Against the Clock
Bays, Greys or Chestnuts: Chesnuts
Champagne or Gin: Neither I’m T Total (that’s another story)
Schoolmaster or Youngster: Youngster
Sunshine or Snow: Sunshine
Home Cooked or Eating Out: Eating Out
Spend or Save: Spend!!!!
Music or Film: Music
Horse Racing or Racing Cars: Horse Racing
Kylie Roddy is supported by Shearwater Insurance. With over 25 years experience within the equestrian sector, Shearwater have got you covered. Find out more about the policies they can off via https://www.shearwater-insurance.co.uk/