Petplan Equine Ambassadorship 2018


Following our two year sponsorship with Petplan Equine in 2015 and 2016, and developing into an Ambassador in 2017, I am very happy to be continuing my position as a Petplan Equine Ambassador for 2018.


This is a huge honour, and it is fantastic to be representing Petplan Equine, as a rider and ambassador for responsible ownership.


For more information and to follow our competition updates and results keep intouch with our petplan page at


I will also post updates on this website, facebook and twitter!


Follow our facebook page for daily happenings and updates on the horses!


Thank you Petplan Equine for this great opportunity!



Petplan Equine has been a leading horse and rider insurance provider since 1988. They are known for their professionalism and specialist knowledge of equine insurance and aim to offer their customers straightforward cover that they can rely on.


Petplan Equine offers a variety of flexible horse insurance and rider insurance policies which cater for all levels of experience, from the happy hacker to a polo champion. Petplan Equine paid out over £12,800,000 for claims in 2015 and they can pay vets directly following all approved claims. 


The team at Petplan Equine are all equestrian enthusiasts: they understand their customers, their challenges and the emotions associated with horse ownership so customers can be sure that they are talking to a horse insurance provider that speaks their language.

For further information, please visit Or call 0330 102 1701 quoting ‘Riders’ to receive one month free. 

Its been a long while since our last update, winter has taken hold, and we have had to contend with the ‘Beast from the East’. In all my years of owning horses, this had by far been the worst winter I have ever had to get through! Bare minimum riding, and a lot of mucking out and making haynets!
Sleet has been his usual winter hating self, given the option he will happily stay in and avoid it all! When the ‘Beast from the East’ hit, it was blowing directly into his stable, he had snow banks all up the wall, and at first I just didn’t know what to do! Thankfully, being an engineers daughter and logical thinker, I managed to block up the open eaves in the stable with an old quilt, and hang an old turnout rug over his door (as we don’t have top doors). Wrapped up in his rugs and stable bandages, we managed to keep hi warm, but at one point I was seriously considering taking him home and putting him in dads garage!!

Work wise sleet has been doing well, he’s been happy hacking a few times a week, babysitting Blee (who was on lead). Sleet never faults or disappoints me, he is so good leading out, either ridden on lead himself, and I think it cheers him up being out with someone else too rather than just trundling along on our own.
The ‘Little Wing Man’ has been back at the vets this winter, but not for his Uveitis, for his manhood! It was about time that he was castrated, and its much easier to manage getting them done in winter when there are no flies to bother the wound. He was a fab patient and took it all in his stride. Due to his age it was a closed castration, and the wound had dissolvable stitches so he didn’t have to go back. I kept and eye on it and it healed well.
On a ‘happier’ note Tristans gorgeous little saddle came! He had a show cut little Saddle Company saddle, made on a 14.5” panel as hes so compact. His new rider Lexi (as im obviously too big to do anything with him) has been riding him, on lead, and hes going so well! We were intending on getting out to our first show, but as with many events, the horrendous weather and snow caused it to be cancelled (and I didn’t want to tow in that anyway!)

Lordies having a fab time, doing nothing and getting fat! Over winter, as he doesn’t hack to the school, and I have no arena at home, his workload depends entirely on the ground conditions.
Hes had roughly two and half months off now, a few weeks ago we started bringing him back, only to be stopped by snow again! Not that hes complaining!
Newark and Notts county show hold and ROR class, and I’d love to take him, but at this rate he just wont be fit, conditioned, or well schooled enough to go!

As with all my horses, nothing is ever straight forward. Unfortunately with Blee, this theme continued. In the first week of having him, he kicked himself in the leg, breaking his splint bone, and ending up on 7 weeks box rest!!
Trying to keep a 5 year old, who hasn’t been stabled much, was new to the yard, and wasn’t settling was a nightmare at first! He box walked, called, stressed, and generally wasn’t doing anything to help his leg heal , so after discussions with the vets, he went on to a calmer, NutraCalm, that worked wonders! He was so much happier with the situation.

On our trip back to the vets for his final scan, my back luck struck again! The belt on the landrover snapped, leaving me with no real steering, brakes, or fan to cool the engine! I was stuck in rush hour traffic with a horse that wasn’t happy, and had no real choice! We limped it to the vets at 5mph! On arrival Blee went to get scanned and I went about fixing the truck (with the eventual help of Equestridad, who also had a broken foot at the time).
With Blee getting the all clear, he could begin walk work, we started with long lining, and then moved to ride and lead with Sleet. I wasn’t sure how well they would work together, but they got on great. Blee got used to the amount of traffic we have round here with an excellent ‘teacher’ and he didn’t mind my love for hiviz either!
After four weeks walk work, I tried him on the lunge in trot to see how he was and he was fine, so I started ridden work with him. Walk hacking to start with to condition him, and then we went up to the school. The aim wasn’t anything major, it was more a case of seeing what he would do, when asked to trot and canter. Would he erupt and turn into a bronching monster? Or would he be sensible and behave??
Thankfully he was a good boy, considering the tractor was emptying one side of the school, and the yards horses all came cantering over to ‘say hello’ on the other side, he walked trotted and did a canter both reins like a pro! I was so happy to have my new pony back and going!

Since then weve done a couple of little schooling session, just working on the basics and he’s still very green. But I cannot wait to get him going a little more!
Blee, ‘Goodmans Gift’, also has his very own sponsor! Goodmans Finance, will be sponsoring Blee in his career, and continuing his insurance with Petplan equine.
Over December Marcus has a chill month (due to Amandas busy shop!) But in the new year we were back on it, and decided to start getting some practice in the side saddle.
A local venue runs dressage and combined training so we booked prelim 7, which I even learnt, and battled the miserable rain. On arrival it was pouring it down and occasionally snowing, which meant we couldn’t decided whether to go astride or aside (as the side saddle has a doeskin seat and is extremely difficult to clean to EQ standards), but as the tiniest peak of blue sky shone through, we braved it!
Marcus warmed up really well (aside), and did a reasonable test (side saddle) considering he hadn’t done any since the nationals, and neither had I! His biggest issue aside is drifting his quarters inwards on the right rein, as hes unsupported by the right leg. But we have lots of time to work on that!
Results were ok, with 66.81%, and lots of positive feedback to work on over the next few months!

After the past few months of misery, snow, and not really be able to do much with the boys, I am desperate to get them out and going. Blee and Lordie need time in the school, and Tristan needs time under saddle with his jockey (and so I can practice my lead rein ‘lady run’!)
Marcus has lots do over the next few months, with our first side saddle shows looming in April, and dressage with his mum Amanda in between.
Positive vibes required… think sunshine sunshine sunshine!!


Rachael Jayne Barker

Tel 07792 255007



Business hours

Appointments can be made to suit your schedule. Please contact Rachael to discuss your requirements.


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