5 minutes with Claire Drey Brown
Claire is an Event and Dressage rider based near Dartford in Kent, her and her 2 horses Phoeb and Sandy are based with Francis Whittington near Tunbridge Wells.
She has evened up to CIC* and Intermediate Level on her Quirky horse Phoeb (Metroville) who unfortunately fell out of love with Eventing last season. She represented the South East at the J* Champs at Frickley Park where she was in 4th after dressage before a horrific fall that has unfortunately left Claire suffering since. She and Phoebe also did extremely well on the dressage circuit before Phoeb recently injured himself, they even came first in their first Advanced Medium.
She now has a young horse coming through the ranks, Sandy (Bahleer DHI), plus she also rides and competes many horses for owners.
Claire answered the following questions for us!
What got you into riding and how long have you been riding?
I have been pony mad since I can remember!! I was completely relentless with my poor parents and wouldn't give up until they took me to my first riding lesson age 6. I have been hooked ever since and have been riding now for 14 years!
Who is your horse of a lifetime & why?
My horse of a lifetime would probably have to be Baloo; my first 'proper' horse. If a junior rider is lucky enough, they will come across a 'point and shoot' horse. Baloo was even more than this, when I got scared I didn't even kick, I just pointed, and away we went! He was a saint. I can't not also mention Phoebus...but he is the horse of a lifetime four different reasons. He was the best teacher you could ever hope for, but for all the wrong reasons to begin with! When you got it right, he was perfect (most of the time). However, if you got anything wrong you would definitely know about it!! He would stop, was very strong, very hard to balance, tense on the flat, out of control showjumping...but we came through it all and went up to Intermediate level BE and (WON) Advanced Medium BD. I certainly would not be where I am today without this wonderfully quirky horse, although I would have two working knees!! I have a bond with him that I've never experienced before with an animal, I trust him with my life, being on him feels like home; he's my bestfriend. We've had a hell of a journey and he has made so many seemingly impossible things come true for me, he owes me nothing.
Funnies horse related moment?
One of my funniest moments would definitely be introducing my Fiancé to my horses, he went as white as a ghost! Trying to persuade him to touch the electric fence was also mildly entertaining....Poor Danny!!
One thing people may not know about you?
One thing people may not know about me is that I deal with Chronic Fatigue on a daily basis and have had it for 6 years. Favourite competition venue? Probably Firle Place! It is just such a beautiful setting and always has lovely courses! 3 things you couldn't live without (3 horsey 3 non horsey)? Horsey 1. EquStreamz Bands! 2. Frog Health (especially now Phoeb is having some box rest time!) 3. Francis' pearls of wisdom (if you ignore the Yoda quotes) Non horsey 1. My family including my wonderful Fiancé, Danny! 2. Our dogs, including new puppy, Luna! 3. Chocolate!! Best piece of advice you have been given? Sit up and KICK! - works in most situations! Sum up this year so far in 3 words Building for the future
Thanks Claire x