Updated: Apr 20
The Philanderer, or Phil as he’s known at home is a legend in the show ring, taking the prestigious Supreme Champion at HOYS as well as the RIHS the following year. Now, 18 years old, he enjoys a slower pace of life out in the fields with his friends, nannying the show pony yearlings and enjoying a walk through the Hampshire countryside – infact, he seems to prefer ponies to the horses! He would much rather live outside in the field, as opposed to coming in to his nice warm stable. And despite one of his quirks being that he hates being tied up, he’ll stand loose in his box to be clipped – he’s always been known as quite a quirky boy!
Sara was busy prepping Phil who’d just had his shoes put back on ready to start work again after a few months break; he’d been bathed, trimmed and was sharing a haynet with his little 2-year old pony companion when I arrived. Sara had been working at Jayne Ross’ yard when Phil was competing and he’d come to hers to retire. He sadly sustained an injury out playing in the field and they decided that would be the right time to retire him from a glittering career. Sara fell in love with him whilst he was doing his rehab work, she said he’ll do anything for a polo!
The Philanderer, at the time, owned by Carol Bardo, was known for being one of the trickier horses to ride in the show ring. The striking grey was once described as “like riding a marshmallow” by Jayne! However, once in the ring he was known for his charisma, although never straightforward to ride!
It’ll be 10 years ago that Phil took the Supreme Championship title at HOYS with Jayne, the previous year saw him crowned the Riding Horse Champion. (2008) The year he took the title, they weren’t sure if they were going to even get him in the room – they had a member of the team stationed around the arena to hide the blue bins that he’d taken a dislike to. But he gave the ride of his life and was crowned the champion that year!