The Stables

Five Minutes with Ros Canter

Equestrian Life is well-known for their rider interviews and recently took a few minutes out to catch up with popular Lincolnshire event rider, Rosalind Canter.  Many may know Ros as the diminutive, talented and determined rider who really pulled some great results out the bag in 2017 and she hopes to finish even better in 2018.  Currently long listed for the World Equestrian Games and riding high as the FEI World No. 2, here’s what she had to say.

Do you come from a horsey background?
Yes, I grew up riding on our family farm with my two sisters. We were keen pony clubbers and loved hunting.

What first attracted you to the Eventing scene
We always loved the Pony Club one day events the most. Then My oldest sister got a horse that had done a Pre-Novice (BE100) and so she wanted to have a go, so when I got my first horse I had a go too. 

Tell us about one of your earliest successes?
Coming 2nd in the HOYS working hunter qualifier at Lincolnshire show. We only entered as we had always wanted to do it and to have a day off school, but the course was particularly difficult, and I jumped one of only two clear rounds. 

You’ve kept up your academic studies, what are you now qualified in and how does that play a part in your busy lifestyle?

I have a degree in sports science. That is useful as now the human fitness side of eventing is becoming more important, I already have a fairly good understanding of what I should be doing. It’s sometimes difficult to test yourself as the athlete though!   I also have my BHSII and have nearly competed my UKCC level 3. I love training and teaching, so these have been very useful. 

Who was the first major influence in your Eventing career?

My Mum and she still is. She works harder than anyone else I know and still has a huge involvement in my business. 

Do you have a favourite event or course? I love Burghley. I have watched the event for over 20 years and it was a dream come true to ride there.

What was your experience of your first 4* event?

That was Burghley and Alby had a sore chin in the run up to the event, so I was so worried about that. I had fairly low expectations which I think worked to our advantage as we had an amazing time. Alby is just an amazing scopey jumper, so he made my first experience feel so exhilarating. 

Badminton 2017: a major game changer?
Yes definitely. It has given me confidence in my system and my business, although it was the changes I made in training that lead to the result at Badminton. 

Tell us about your current rides?
Allstar B- definitely a star, 5th at Badminton in 2017 and 3rd in 2018 and placed both times at the Europeans. He is an outstanding jumper and is learning to enjoy the dressage! 

Zenshera- my pride and joy. He is a family pet who also jumps round 4 stars. Whereas Alby is over 17 hands, Alfie’s is just 15.2hh but he came 7th and 9th in his 4 star runs last year. 

What are your plans for 2018?

Following our successes at Badminton and the Europeans, further team selection and individual successes.  We are thrilled at being long-listed currently for the World Equestrian Games with both Zenshera and Allstar B

To anyone starting out – what advice would you give them?

Keep working hard and go for any opportunity. 

What’s your go-to piece of kit you cannot do without
I love my Equipe saddles. I bought an old Equipe saddle when I was starting out and still have it now. I have some new ones, but they really suit me. I love my Charles Owen hats too and have worn them for years and my new Monarch solarium is a real hit with the horses! 

To be so successful you must have a good back-up team, tell us about them?
My mum helps with my business and on the yard. She is normally seen attached to the wheelbarrow and poo picking the fields. Ruth is my groom at home and she is really dedicated to all of the horses. Sarah helps at the big events and does a lot of driving for me.  I also get wonderful support from my sponsors who include Emerald Green Feeds, Topcrop Haulage and Charles Owen and it is fantastic to have their regular support.

by Zoe Bateson

With thanks to Equestrian Life for the interview:

Ros Canter: