Charlie Samuel-Camps, Owner & rider of Super Cooper and Archie’s competition rider
Because I’m a BD Group 7 rider, I’ve been competing Mary Johnston’s Archie at Prelim and Novice level with Karen’s help. She trains me regularly on him and I also bring my own horse for lessons which have been hugely beneficial for both of us. Karen is an inspirational person and has a great way of explaining what she means in graphic detail so that it sticks in your mind – even when you’re nervous at a competition and attention to detail when test riding is so important. Her philosophy is that the welfare of the horse always comes first and she gives me and my horse great confidence which translates into good results in the arena. I now appreciate the importance of keeping the horse loose in the neck and through from behind and the need for consistent methods of training and development with empathy for the horse. I have adapted my riding so the focus is on suppleness and my horse has gone from being a 16.2hh TBxWB pony to a 17hh WB in 4 lessons. I greatly admire Karen’s riding and hope that I can attain the same level some day if I put in as much work as she does!