Buy 10 digital images for £40 = £10 discount

Blog - Supported Riders

Exciting news
16th September 2012 - 0 comments
I start this blog by announcing a change in the MDR Photo sponsored riders line up, as Debbie Donovan has decided to move on from riding Tradition (Trad). As my dad owns Trad, whoever competes on him is an automatic choice to be an MDR Photo supported rider, so the question is who will compete on him in 2013?

Well the answer is… ME! Yes you have read that correctly, I have decided to have another go at eventing 9 years after I last completed an event and 8 years since I rode regularly.

Dime & I at Gatcombe in 2002

This is actually something I have been considering for the last few months but after Debbie announced she was moving on I felt this was my perfect opportunity to have another go and see what we can do together.

Whilst photographing eventing over the last few years I have watched the world’s best and seen some poor riding and on many occasions thought to myself I would love to ride like that or oh my god I wouldn’t do it like that!! So now it will be my turn to see what I have learnt from watching 1000s of horses and riders.

I must also say that over the last 18 months watching and helping my supported riders Clare and Harriet has really inspired me, as has spending time with some of my lovely customers/friends this year such as Teri Warner, Alexis Ross and Jennifer Hart.

I have to be realistic and say that it’s not going to be easy as I haven’t ridden regularly for a long time and Trad is a different horse to Dime who I grew up with. But when Dad brought him I rode and jumped him and we seemed to get on well straightaway, plus I know from the last two years he has been solid and reliable in all phases.

The plan over the winter is to forge a partnership and build up both of our strength, stamina and fitness with the aim of getting out on the BE circuit in the spring. There are bound to be various challenges as we go but my main aim is to enjoy every minute, even the dressage!

Just in case anyone is wondering I am still planning to take pictures and be available for photo shoots so nothing changes there. It’s just now there will be even more chance of you bumping into me at events, it just might be on horseback, rather than with my camera!

A special mention must go to my wife Lisa and my parents who have all supported me in reaching this decision and I know will be helping me as much as they can.

That’s it for now, so wish me luck and keep coming back to get the latest news on our progress!

Debbie & Trad at Aston Le Walls in 2012
Latest on supported riders
23rd May 2012 - 0 comments
April and May have been a bit weird really as the rain has completely messed the schedules up. I was working with Ultimate Images at Hambleden when it all started to go wrong. The first day was run and the course held up surprisingly well considering the rain and hail storms, however the parking was trashed and mud got all over the road meaning the second and third days had to be abandoned. However despite the weather all of my supported riders have been quite busy.

Hambleden in the sun and hail!

Before the cancellation I was lucky enough to briefly see Harriet fly past me on the BE100 course at Hambleden on her way to an excellent 3rd place on Alice Dundson’s horse Mulligan II, a new ride for the 2012 season.

As I then had a free weekend I rerouted unannounced to see Clare and Fifi at Solihull on what turned out to be a day of sunshine and heavy showers. Fifi and Claire took it all in their stride and turned out another improving performance in dressage, just one down show jumping and a lovely clear across country despite the heavy going. See photos here.

Clare and Fifi at Solihull

Debbie Donovan and Tradition also managed to get a run in the rain and mud, at Milton Keynes in the BE90, ending up in 6th place. They had just one down in the show jumping and only 2 time penalties on the cross-country.

We then entered the period of loads of events being cancelled, including Badminton, which for the first time I had a photographers press pass, obviously this was totally gutting! During the cancellations I spent time in Dorset and at the cinema so not all was lost and I think my wife was pleased to see me!

Fortunately the second half of May has been a bit better and Clare and Debbie were both competing at Aston Le Walls in the unaffiliated horse trials, run over the BE90 course.

Clare and Fifi had another solid dressage, one down show jumping and then another foot perfect cross-country round. One more BE90 for them at Shelford and then they are planning to step up to BE100 level. See photos here.

Clare and Fifi at warming up for dressage at Aston Le Walls

Debbie and Tradition produced their best dressage of the season after some intensive training with Kylie Roddy and then followed that up with a double clear. Unfortunately Debbie got a little lost on the cross-country course so a slight detour added 1.2 time penalties to their score. They are stepping up to BE100 next time at Berkshire College. See photos here.

Debbie and Tradition on cross-country at Aston Le Walls

A week later I was off to Tweseldown to see Harriet and Mulligan competing in the BE100 Open section. Mulligan is an experienced horse but has been away from eventing for a couple seasons hunting so Harriet has been working hard to get him back to his best and improve his fitness.

At Tweseldown it was evident that the hard work had been paying off as they produced a great test to score 24, the second highest in the section. SJ round was good with just an unlucky pole. Cross-country was very good and Mulligan few around inside the time to end on 28 and in fourth place. They are doing another BE100 Open at Borde Hill and then the next event will be a Novice. See photos here.

I am very lucky to be able to follow these three excellent but completely different riders and I genuinely look forward to seeing all of them compete.

Next up for me is Borde Hill (both days) and then in June I am joining back up with Ultimate Images for a few events.

As ever keep in touch via Facebook and Twitter and let me know where your going to be. Also don't forget I am still offering 50% off my competition photo shoot booking fee so you can get a personal photographer at your next event for just £25.00.
Update on supported riders
16th April 2012 - 0 comments
Its been a busy few days for my supported riders with all three of them out competing in the last few days.

Firstly Clare Stringer was at Sapey with Fifi (Kitty Way) in the BE80 last Thursday. Clare coped with some really tricky weather conditions to get a 36 dressage, two down show jumping and a lovely clear cross country. There has been a marked improvement in Fifi's dressage this season and her consistency is really good with her getting two 36's in a row. You can read a lot more about Clare, her horses and her other supporters on her brilliant website. I can't wait to catch up with Clare at some more events soon, she is a great rider and a excellent supporter of me.

Secondly Harriet Upton was at South of England in the BE100 with Beanie (Tinkas Whiz Kid) and Yara (Laraghlee). It was a good start to the day with two strong dressage tests, with 34.5 & 30.5 respectively. Beanie did a nice SJ round and was really unlucky to role a pole and their cross country round was very nice with just 0.8 time faults. Yara jumped nicely but knocked two poles SJ and then on cross country ducked out at the hippo coming out of the water, which was a shame, but its all learning for Harriet & Yara and I am sure they will be back with a double clear next time.

Thirdly (well at the same time as Harriet) Debbie Dononvan and Trad (Tradition) were at their first event of the season, the BE90 at Ascott under Wychwood. They had a really early start leaving the yard before 6am. Dressage was a slightly disappointing 47 but Trad is a jumping machine so a lovely double clear followed to earn them their first foundation point. They weren't even put off by Deb's forgetting to get her hat checked, which led to her having to rush back from the xc start to the secretary's and she then forgot to unclip her air jacket, meaning she then had to change the canister before going back down to start.

So all in all its been a pretty good start to the season for all three of my supported riders and I am looking forward to catching up with Clare and Debs in person soon and getting some more photos of them.

The next events for them are:
* Clare & Fifi - BE90, Solihull on 22nd April
* Harriet & Mulligan - BE100, Hambleden on 20th April
* Debs & Trad - BE90, Milton Keynes on 24th April
Harriet Upton and MDR Photo Feature on the Eventing Radio Show
08th December 2011 - 0 comments
Newly announced supported rider Harriet Upton and I were recently interviewed on the Eventing Radio Show as part of the shows focus on amateur riders and sponsorship.

Harriet and I were both very nervous but absolutely delighted to be invited on air so if your keen to have a listen you can do so by clicking here or on the below picture.

Previously Clare Stringer, MDR Photo's other supported rider has featured on the show twice and you can find her shows on the Eventing Radio Show website or iTunes, they were episodes 160 and 167.
New Supported Rider
15th November 2011 - 0 comments
MDR Photo is pleased to announce Harriet Upton as our new supported rider for 2012.

After receiving many great applications for a new supported rider following advertisement on our Twitter feed and Facebook page we choose Harriet as we were very impressed with her application and we felt she would be a great ambassador for MDR Photo.

You can read more about Harriet on my dedicated Supported Riders page.

Harriet joins Clare Stringer and Debbie Donovan as MDR Photo riders and we feel with this team 2012 is looking like it will be a fantastic and successful year.

Don't forget to like us on Twitter and Facebook to keep right up to date with everything that is going on.

MDR Photo supported rider is the Shearwater Scholar
10th November 2011 - 0 comments
MDR Photo is pleased to report that our main supported rider Clare Stringer has been chosen by Shearwater Insurance as their 2012 Scholar. They will receive £500 worth of training support and Shearwater branded clothing and equipment.

MDR Photo is very proud of Clare for winning this very tough and prestigious scholarship as we know how hard she has worked over the last 12 months with her string of horses whilst also holding down a full time job.

When Clare asked for a quote to go in her application we were very happy to provide one and we hope to be working alongside Shearwater to provide them with regular updated photos during the 2012 eventing season.

You can keep up to date with all things Shearwater via their blog page by clicking here.

MDR Photo supported rider features on radio show
23rd September 2011 - 0 comments
This week MDR Photo's supported rider Clare Stringer featured on the Eventing Radio Show, talking about how she balances full time work and eventing.

The Eventing Radio Show is a weekly online radio show (podcast) that brings you the finest in news & interviews about one of the toughest equine disciplines. This weeks edition is the first in a series of episodes focused on amateur riders.

Clare did a great job on the show despite being very nervous and she was very kind to mention MDR Photo.

If you would like to listen to the show you can do so by clicking here.
Help for Indi
07th August 2011 - 0 comments
I am currently trying to raise money for my friend Clare Stringer who's three year old filly recently required life saving surgery for colic.

There are various ways of helping and you can do so by reading more on the Help for Indi page I have set up.

Please take a few minutes to read the story and learn about what we are doing to help.
Second Supported Horse
07th August 2011 - 0 comments
More exciting news here on MDR Photo as I am pleased to announce that MDR Photo is supporting a second horse called Bandolero, who is owned and ridden by Clare Stringer.

Details of Bandolero and also my first supported horse, Tradition, can be found on this page of the website. Further horses will hopefully feature soon.

If you would like to be supported by MDR Photo then please get in touch via email so that we can have a discussion and come to a suitable arrangement.