Future Sport Horses has launched an innovative Partnership Programme to work with talented young riders
It is widely acknowledged that there is an issue with getting sufficient horsepower into the hands of talented young riders who have yet to catch the eye of enough owners to enable them to create a viable business as a full time competition rider.
It’s also widely acknowledged that breeders of talented young horses can struggle to find riders skilled enough to ‘make’ these young horses or are only able to send 1 or 2 horses away for production due to the costs. This results in many fantastic young horses never fulfilling their potential. Future Sport Horses have some of the most highly regarded bloodlines in event horse breeding – Hand in Glove, Power Blade, Grafenstolz, Cruising, Primitive Proposal, Fleetwater Opposition, Rock King, Duke of Hearts… and these youngsters come from exceptional motherlines which include 4* Event horses, Grand Prix showjumpers, WEG and Olympic medallists. We want to get these horses into the hands of capable riders so that these riders have horsepower with potential, and Future Sport Horses can give opportunities to shine to more of their horses.
On the Continent this problem is less acute as the equine breeding industry has a more prestigious standing and programmes exist to match young horses with talented and up and coming riders. In the UK efforts were made by the BEF through the Equine Bridge but this did not fully meet the need that exists to match horses with riders, or answer the questions on how the financial model of production could work, and is now sadly defunct as a result of the BEF ceasing to fund it.
In disciplines outside of eventing, and across in Ireland there are a handful of breeders already partnering with riders. At Future Sport Horses we are always looking for innovative ways to promote British Event Horse breeding and production and we have therefore looked to learn lessons from our successful counterparts in Europe. The production models adopted by key breeders such as Fritz Butts (who bred many of the German team horses from the last decade such as Butts Abraxxas, Butts Leon and Butts Avedon) included partnering with riders who had the skills to produce young horses but who had not yet made it to the ‘big time’ where they could fill their yards with paying owners horses.
We believe this partnership model could work well in the UK and published our proposals on our Facebook page and invited riders to contact us if they would like to work with us, where we can pool our joint resources to further both our aims. No money is required from riders to ‘buy in’ to our horses, instead we are looking to GIFT increasing amounts of ownership of the horse to the rider in return for their expertise in producing them. This a model already proven to work. The framework principles will remain the same across the horses we put into this programme with specific details tailored depending on the riders situation and horse offered. This is a win-win situation where the rider gains an increasing % stake in a horse which at the same time is also increasing in value – and good performances from the pairing will hopefully attract attention bringing more owners to the riders, and Future Sport Horses also benefit from having their talented horses out and competing without significant running costs.
As a result of our Facebook post about this programme we have been overwhelmed by expressions of interest from riders of all levels right through to 4*. We are now reading and considering all of the communications we’ve had and are looking to short list a selection of riders to have deeper discussions with.
We will keep you posted with progress!!