Foot & Mouth

I see Mark Phillips is on a charm offensive again with his fortnightly column. He is of course spot on with his overall message we need more responsible training (and riding). When all is said and done we don’t train horses we train people and all too often riders only seek advice after a problem (the old chesnut of prevention rather than cure comes to mind).

We do really need to look at ways of reducing the risks posed by riders who choose to plead ignorance of safety concerns, like going hell for leather round the cross country and crossing the line 45+ seconds under the optimum time on a 9 min. track. Perhaps a month’s ban would crystalise the point in riders’ minds (as they do in horse racing for things like excessive use of the whip or careless riding). Similarly course designers and organisers require a little humble pie from time to time.

Still I can’t help but think the capt. is suffering from a little foot & mouth considering his own eventful week, and a few more carefully chosen words would have been the spoonful of sugar this safety message needs to deliver. Hands up!

Amateur event rider, aspiring photographer. Technologist by day.