Leading showman Robert Walker has amassed a host of major championships over the years whether riding Show Hunters, Riding Horses, Hacks or Cobs. Well known for his attention to detail and making sure his horses look in fantastic condition, Robert’s horses are always a picture of health.
Name: Robert Walker
How and when did you start riding?
I probably sat on a pony even before I could walk, but certainly as soon as I was able to sit upright on a pony. My dad Tony was keen to get me started and I never looked back.
During your career has there been a particular horse that you consider to have really helped you ‘make it’?
I would have to say the Small Hunter, Double Coin. I had him when I was 16 and we went to the Royal International Horse Show for the first time. I was pulled in top out of 43 and suddenly everyone sat up and took notice. We eventually finished third but it was very much a turning point.
Which top horse do you personally most admire and why?
I would have to go for Caesar’s Palace as he combines real quality and class with a trainable attitude. He just knows he is special and if he were human would be George Clooney!
Tell us about the tack you use?
We are very fortunate to be sponsored by Black Country Saddles. The team at Black Country Saddles have many years’ experience when it comes to fitting and making saddles and we are delighted to have their support. When it comes to showing, the overall image and look is just so important when you are in the ring and as well as being the perfect fit for horse and rider, the saddles also have to be comfortable for the judges to ride in. We are very impressed with the saddles and are looking forward to riding our Show Hunters, Hacks, Riding Horses and Cobs in them this season.
If you could give one piece of advice to readers, what would it be?
I think it is very important to be committed to your chosen discipline and also to watch and learn from the professionals. Everyone is happy to provide advice and we want to encourage amateur riders to come up through the ranks and be as professional in their production skills and outlook as they can.
What are your plans for 2015?
We have a great team of young horses to get out and about on the show circuit this year so at the early events it is our job to educate them and provide them with a good experience they will remember at their early shows. Once the season is underway we always look forward to Royal Windsor Horse Show and then it is all about qualification for the Royal International Horse Show followed by HOYS.
Horse name: Caesar’s Palace Stable name: Caesar
Owner: Jill Day Colour: Bay Sex: Gelding Height: 16.31/2hh
Age: Six-years-old Breed: Irish Sport Horse Sire: Emperor August
Caesar’s Palace took the Show Hunter Championship at HOYS last year after winning the Middleweight category. We first caught sight of him at the Royal Dublin Horse Show. His owner Jill Day had seen him and wanted us to take a closer look. You could see he was a star even as a two-year-old and went on to be Youngstock Champion at this prestigious show. Like all top class show horses he just has that ‘look at me’ attitude that horses are born with. You can improve them in many ways but they have to stand out from the rest in a class and attract the judge’s attention.
Three things you did’t know about him:
1) He is very fussy
2) He is a good-doer
3) He is always relaxed and ‘good to do’