Samantha Hobden caught up with Matt recently in Haynet’s Chatting A Bit series to find out more about Matt Hicks and his future equestrian plans:
What is your earliest memory when riding ponies as a child?
Enjoying pony club on my Shetland pony called Camilla.
Why did you choose to focus on dressage? Was it an easy decision to follow this direction into equestrian sport?
I evented Internationally up until 2002 and I had always enjoyed the dressage training and it seemed the natural progression.
What has been the challenges and triumphs of running your own yard?
It’s very hard work but very rewarding. I am lucky to have a great team behind me.
What do you look for in a dressage horse? Do you go with your gut feeling or should a horse meet a list of requirements in your professional eye?
For me, they need to uphill and reactive, but mainly it’s down to gut feeling.
Which equestrian rider do you take inspiration from and why?
Carl and Charlotte are such talented dedicated riders and brilliant trainers. Ginny Elliott (Leng) was a great inspiration when I evented, again all her horse were produced and presented so well for the job.
If you hadn’t gone down the equestrian career path, what would have been your Plan B?
There was NO plan B!
What are your plans and goals for the rest of this year?
To compete Excalibur and Sheepcote Walnut at International Big Tour and continue to produce our lovely young horses.
Who have been your support network with your equestrian career?
Mathew, my partner of 27 years has played a key part of my career – he ensures everything behind the senses run smoothly. And I’m fortunate to have a brilliant team of staff (past and present) and great owners too!
On a day off, where can we find you?
When I get a day off! I enjoy gardening or a trip to London to the theatre.
Where would you like to be in ten years time?
Hopefully more of the same!
Against the Clock Questions
Bays, Greys or Chesnuts: Greys
Champagne or Beer: Champagne
Schoolmaster or Youngster: Youngster
Sunshine or Snow: Snow
Home Cooked or Eating Out: Eating Out
Spend or Save: Spend
Music or Film: Music
Horse Racing or Racing Cars: Horse Racing