Thursday, 4 September 2008

Katie Price: the human face of the horse

Or something like that. KP has been much in the equestrian news lately, whether it's because China White wouldn't let her in to the polo (their tent, at least), or because she's going to be appearing at the Horse of the Year Show as the subject of a dressage lesson, or because of the (oh oh oh I am LONGING to say something smartarse here but I won't because really, I don't need to) new equestrian wear range she's designed.

However, she is now going to be the face of "Hoof", which wants to challenge the idea that eventing doesn't really fit into London (a point of view which I have some sympathy with) and which also, much more laudably, wants to encourage London children to ride. Here's Hoof's website.

I think this is an excellent idea, though I'm not sure how realistic it is. I can see that having an accessible person like KP to promote riding will do more to reach people who wouldn't normally think of riding than say, Zara Phillips. But - riding costs a lot. Riding schools aren't exactly ten a penny in London either.

I had a look on the website for my old London borough, Greenwich, and the only equestrian thing you can do there is help the Riding for the Disabled in Charlton (I wonder if my son remembers being taken to see these ponies when he was wee? Don't suppose so. When it came to a competition between a London bus and a pony well, there wasn't any competition.)

I hope this idea works, though I feel it will need more sustained financial support to make a real difference to whether children without much money ride or not.

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