Scott’s philosophy is simple; your horses always come first, and this happiness and well being is what matters most. Scroll down to read about Scott’s way of working, and learn more about his thoughts and approach to life, straight from the horse’s mouth.
Ever since Scott fell in love with horses at a young age, his philosophy has been to keep their happiness as their top priority. Famously known for having a small yard with horses he brings on and produces himself, Scott’s approach is a ‘horses first’ mentality and to spend as much time with each individual as possible.
“I think they appreciate you spending more and more time with them and I feel that they give you more in the ring when it counts. And I think when they love doing what they’re doing, they’ll go the extra mile for you in the ring and in the competition arena. I believe if they feel good and love you like you love them.” – Scott
Scott has a maximum of 15 horses at home, with each on an individual and tailored plan that he creates himself, and supported by his team on the yard. Working towards key goals and shows, Scott never rushes his horses and is happy to adapt a programme wherever needed in order to keep a horse at its optimum happiness, comfort and health. Work at home consists of gentle pole work, gymnastic exercises and plenty of hacking.
Happy horses means letting horses be horses, no matter how valuable or precious they are. And understanding that there is no ‘one solution fits all’ way of doing things. Each is an individual, and is treated as such on Scott’s yard.
“I think it’s just about spending time with them. And learning from them. Because they’re all different, they’re all really different. You know they can’t talk to us but in a way they are talking to us in what they do in situations. If they take a different step or something that’s them talking to you and start to get to know them. To know what they’ll spook at, what they’ll do, what their strengths are, what their weaknesses are, and then work on those weaknesses and then they start trusting you. Because they start trusting you that it’s not so bad after all after you start encouraging past a wheelie bin or something for example! Little things like that. The more time you spend with them, the more bond, connection you get with each horse.” – Scott
Scott never shies away from hard work, a mentality that has been instilled in him from a young age. Whenever he’s at home, you’ll find him chipping in with the team and over Christmas always works himself so to give them a well earned few days off. Scott believes that with a positive attitude and hard work, goals can be realised.
“My mother and father are both very hard working people – that was installed, ingrained in us from a very young age, we’ve always worked very hard in everything we’ve done. I remember even back in the pony days my father would work all week to get in the truck and drive us down to Wales and West for example, an eight hour journey to get us there – we’d jump all weekend, get in the horse box on Sunday night, get back at four or five in the morning and still get up for school Monday morning. My mum would have to make me get out of bed and my sister was better at getting up than me! And my father would go to work at five thirty. So that was always ingrained in us in a very young age and I think that was a really good attribute to have in life.
You have to work hard in life and be dedicated to what you want to do to be able to achieve your goals.” – Scott
Hard work is the key, in Scott’s mind, and is what makes the difference in the sport:
“I think it’s good to know that you don’t have to come from a really wealthy background to be able to make it in this sport. I think if you’re hard working, dedicated enough and really believe in yourself and really work towards that goal that you want, it’s amazing what you can do and what can happen. Yes you need things to go right along the way, and you need people to help you and believe in you – this is so important, it couldn’t be done without those people – you need top staff, you need all of it, everyone plays a massive key role. But nothing is impossible, if you really believe in something from a young age, it doesn’t matter if you’re not the wealthiest person in the world, you really can achieve your goals and ambitions if you want it enough.” – Scott
But a love of horses is where it begins and ends for Scott, and is the core constant that has never wavered:
“That always comes back when you have your ups and downs and everything… When you walk down that yard at night and see the horses’ faces out, just seeing them and spending time with them is always what brings you back to your roots and why you do it. It’s that love for the horses.” – Scott
A final word on appreciating what you have, and staying humble.
“I think I’m very lucky in life. Maybe along the way you might have changed a little few things but at the same time there’s a few things that I really wouldn’t have changed because I feel really fortunate to where I am and how we’re going as a team, I feel very fortunate for the owners I have and the horses I’m riding and I’m living my dream.
I always want to be appreciative of this but I don’t want to ever sit back, I want this to be my career for as long as it can be. It’s about trying to make the most of it when you have this opportunity.” – Scott