All posts by thelawsonponies

Busy, busy, busy…

Well, it’s been a while since the last update and there’s been a lot going on! Firstly, we had Phoebe Buckley back up for a clinic from 20th – 22nd of March and once again it was a huge success. Phoebe also did a Lecture Demo on the Friday night using a few talented local riders and their horses as guinea pigs and this was both a sell out and a fantastic evening! There were over 50 lessons delivered over the three days, and everyone was delighted with Phoebe’s professionalism, attitude and training techniques.

Here is a short ‘highlights’ video:

One of the big stars of the clinic was little Diesel, our 4yo ‘Sports Cob’ – he was dragged out of the field the week before having been turned away since September and my pal Hannah Gray (who is also our vet!) has been riding him while her wee horse is having a break. He jumped everything asked of him and more! Here’s a little video of him playing about over the last few weeks (he’s for sale!):

Some very exciting news next; our supplement supplier, Hack Up Ltd, which is run by my old friend Alex Gingell have announced us as sponsored riders! We have been using Hack Up’s supplements since the company has launched and are very vocal supporters of them – delighted that this has been recognised and we are very excited to be working more closely with them going forward! Here is a quick look at the lovely branded clothing which just arrived:

Hack Up Gear

Please have a look at our profile page on the Hack Up website by clicking HERE.  Feel free to have a browse, register, request a bespoke formulation or just chat to Alex on their ‘Live Chat’ function – these supplements REALLY work!

Young Lewis and Izzy became quite famous when Horse and Hound picked up his ‘viral video’ and it was liked over 13,000 times!!!  It’s properly viral now!  Link to the post here:

We are now looking forward to the next Phoebe clinic on the 24th and 25th of April, just before Burgie BE Event.  Poor Phoebe has been roped into riding a couple of ours at the event so really looking forward to that weekend!

Until the next update…thanks!


Class is a thing not a given…

A lovely blog from Phoebe…

She’s back up here teaching again next week and we can’t wait!

Hey guys..
So I’m back with another blog that hopefully won’t bore you all senseless!!

Truth be known (and we all know I’m honest to a fault!) I must have re written this blog 3/4 times , each time what I wrote the blog it just didn’t sit right with me.. Anyways.. I got there in the end so grab a coffee , pull up a chair and be prepared to be bored!

In my previous blogs I have spoken about my love for riding ‘class’ horses.. Class is something you can’t give or make a horse have and for me it isn’t always something I can put my finger.. It’s just a ‘something’ some are born with others are not..
Although having thought long and hard about it I do believe class starts with being genuine , having that ‘want’ or ‘will’ to please or win..
How many super…

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Super ponies – in slow motion!

We had a weekend of playing with the ponies at home.  As you might be aware, we bought a new coloured pony to add to the collection last week – that’s number four!  We certainly don’t go out looking for them but they seem to find us!  Saturday was Findlay’s birthday, and it was also the first time he’d had a chance to sit on Lara.  Lara is an older pony and these old servants seem to get written off by the majority of horsey people.  She’s 19yo, she’s done EVERYTHING from hunting, tetrathlon, Pony Club Championships, British Schools Champs at Hickstead etc, etc.  This is experience that money cannot buy!  She’s healthy and sound and still loves her job and has a lot to offer.  This is Findlay’s first wee course of jumps on her:

I have an iPhone 6.  It’s a great phone but one of the best features is the slo-mo function – it captures video in 240 fps (frames per second) so it can be slowed right down without losing any quality.  It’s quite addictive!  Here are Dakota and Lara showing off its capabilities!

Comment, as always, are welcome below!

Oh, and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter here, and sign up with your email address on the right to receive updates!

Scary Massive Fence…No Problem to Izzy!

Here’s another wee video for your enjoyment.  This was taken last year when Lewis was 7.  I had been putting him through a grid a few times and he asked for the oxer to be put up.  I knew Izzy would look after him.  This video went viral with over 1000 shares and we had comments from America, Australia, Russia, Poland etc.  Most comments were positive but you got the odd numptie moaning about wee Lewie’s lack of ‘two point and release’ – stupid Americans!!!

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Harmless Fun, Or An ‘Elf and Safety Nightmare?

Back in the day, we used to do some silly things with our ponies as kids.  I mean really, really silly.  Galloping around the forest bareback (in a headcollar), jumping all sorts daft things (like wire), and so on.  I posted the video below a while ago to mixed reviews – many people were saying how it reminded them of their childhood antics whilst one or two were horrified that I could be so irresponsible to be taking such a risk  – comments such as “OMG, how would you feel if you got kicked in the head and that child had no father!!!”.  Really?  So, harmless fun or a Health and Safety nightmare?  Tell me your thoughts in the comments below (and don’t forget to sign up for updates in that box on the right!)…

Showjumping Disasters and a New Pony!

Last weekend we had a two day show at Tillyoch – or at least we were meant to!  Lewis’ pony Izzy is off again after having a piece of tooth (see pic!) removed from her gum so he took Dakota, his sister’s pony on Saturday morning.  Dakota had a wee buck in the warmup which resulted in tears and a refusal to ride her so that one went back on the lorry!  After a very, very long wait Findlay went into the 1m class with Maddie but cut a corner resulting in a stop at an oxer, a bashed face, an undone chinstrap and ultimately, more tears!

This was removed from Izzy's gum.  It's about 2cm long and the vet reckons it was a 'leftover' from her tooth op a couple of weeks ago.
This was removed from Izzy’s gum. It’s about 2cm long and the vet reckons it was a ‘leftover’ from her tooth op a couple of weeks ago.

After the show, I had organised dinner at the Bieldside Inn for around 40 people although almost 50 turned up.  The ‘Bielder’ did their usual awesome job and stepped up with extra tables, chairs and food but unfortunately this wasn’t good enough for one particular person who moaned, whinged, bitched and complained enough to ruin pretty much everyone’s enjoyment of the evening.  On top of that, the girls’ toilets got damaged with the hand dryer off the wall and a smashed toilet seat!  Not sure this junior showjumping is for us, you wouldn’t get that kind of behaviour with Pony Club or the Eventing lot.

After the disaster of both the jumping and dinner of Saturday, we decided not to go back to the show but to have a pony day at home.  I bought a wee coloured mare unseen during the week so it was a good opportunity to give her a jump and see how she goes.  She’s a (very full up!) 138cm pony who has been there, done it, and got the tee shirt.  Here is her having a wee pop:

Lara has done SJ, XC, hunted, she’s been to the PC Championships, a member of the British Schools SJ Championships winning team at Hickstead etc.  She’ll be a brilliant XC schoolmistress for Findlay.  Here’s a pic of her in her previous home:


After Lara, we headed over to Oldfold and I had a wee sit on Maddie for Fin.  She goes great for him but she sometimes just gets a little stuffy so I gave her a wee jump and got her going a little more forward for him.  You can see her reaction in the pictures below – she has serious attitude!

Maddie 2 Maddie 1Maddie 3 

 She will definitely feel a lot more forward for Findlay the next time he rides her!  I try not to ride the ponies too much but it is sometimes good for them to have a quick ‘tune up’ as it keeps them sweet for the kids.

It’s the bad days that make the good days worthwhile!

Phoebe Buckley Awesomeness!!!

What a weekend!  44 lessons delivered, 21 hours taught, 24 people for dinner on Saturday evening, 5 bottles of Veuve Cliquot consumed and only 4 people hit the deck!

The feedback from the clinic held on the 14th – 15th of February has been overwhelmingly positive!  Phoebe has a knack of ‘getting’ horses and riders very quickly and instinctively knowing how to get the best out of them.  Every lesson I watched was delivered with enthusiasm, fun and professionalism, interspersed with some of Phoebe’s classic anecdotes.  Phoebe taught flatwork until 4pm on Saturday then it was jumping all the way.

On Saturday evening we headed off to the Bieldside Inn where we had a bite to eat and a few bottles of nice champage whilst Phoebe did an excellent Q&A session – some brilliant questions and some even better answers!

Here are a few happy customers!

Findlay and Lewis wew all smiles after their session!
Findlay and Lewis were all smiles after their session!
Catriona and Laila
Catriona and Laila both rode very well and went away with a lot to think about.
Ria and Kara
Ria and Kara happy after their session. I think Phoebe quite fancies a shot on Ria’s lovely coloured mare next time!
We subsidised a group lesson for Deeside Pony Club – I think the thumbs up says it all!
Phoebe Bubbles
A well deserved glass (or 3!) of bubbles for Miss Buckley on Saturday evening!

Phoebe has very kindly agreed to fly back up on the 20th of March to deliver a lecture demonstration on the Friday night followed by SJ training on Saturday and some simulated XC training on Sunday, again at Tillyoch.  We can’t wait!

Phoebe Buckley Clinic – Sold Out!

This coming weekend sees us running a clinic with Phoebe Buckley at Tillyoch over two days.  The response has been phenomenal and both days are (more than) sold out!  Phoebe will be teaching for well over 20 hours over the two days.  I did warn her when I booked her that I’d make her earn her fee!

Phoebe and Little Tiger at Badminton
Phoebe and Little Tiger at Badminton

Those of you that aren’t familiar with Phoebe can have a quick look on her blog here, but suffice to say that she’s been round Badminton and Burghley 11 times (9 of them on the 14.2hh grey legend Little Tiger), won the CCI*** at Bramham and a Young Rider european gold!  She’s also quite well know for her ‘straight shooting’ on social media – you can follow her on Twitter here and Facebook here.

Phoebe will be coaching from 8am until approximately 7:30pm both days and spectators are welcome at no charge.  Flatwork on Saturday until 4pm then jumping thereafter and jumping all day Sunday.

More Cancelled Shows, and Izzy’s Op.

The weather is still conspiring against us!

On Saturday, we had to head to Aboyne to pick Izzy up from Dukes Vets where she had had a little bit of work done on her teeth.  Basically, she has Diastemas which is a space between her teeth – these are causing a problem because food is getting trapped in the gaps and is becoming impacted causing her a lot of pain and discomfort.  In the photo below, you can see what Jim has done using his power-tools.  She had 5 gaps opened up to allow food to come back out without getting stuck.

Don’t worry, this is one that died earlier!

We had the choice of two shows on Sunday; unafilliated SJ at Tillyoch and an Arena Event at Cabin.  We had already decided on Saturday that we would go to Tillyoch as it’s only a couple of miles along the road and the forecast wasn’t great.  Alas, at 8:30 on Sunday morning it was cancelled due to a police travel warning on the A90.  I called Michael to check there was a course up and there was so we loaded a few ponies and took them over for a school round, braving the roads which weren’t too bad (see video).

As well as taking little Ollie (the wee grey 128 that we bought at Cavan sales in Ireland) we took Dakota for Millie to play with, and we also took Hannah with Piglet, Lucy with Storm and Ellis with Cruise – they all jumped round various heights of tracks and performed brilliantly.  Lewis stole a shot on Dakota at the end and I think he’s fallen a little bit in love with her!