As one of the eight lucky finalists starring in the new Blue Chip All Stars Academy programme which airs weekly on Horse and Country TV, Rhi Lee-Jones, aged 27 from the Vale of Glamorgan shares the story of her horse Bob, an ex-racehorse who was a last minute attendee to the camp at the Talland School of Equitation after only two weeks off the race track.
Bob Will, known in the stable as Bob, is an 11 year old gelding by Bob’s Return and out of Mini Moo Min. He was bred in Ireland by Patrick Crotty Jnr but has predominantly raced in the UK, attaining nearly fifty starts and showing most success as a chaser, where he had two wins, seven seconds and seven thirds over the course of his career. Throughout his racing life, Bob was in training with John and Martine Flint who retired him recently after he simply fell out of love with the sport. Rhi says it is a testament to his trainers that they wanted Bob to go on to do another job rather than push him on to race for a further season, as it has allowed her to get a head start on his retraining due to him being kept in fantastic condition and at a high level of fitness.
Since his purchase in mid-April, Bob has been turned out at grass with Rhi’s other ex-flat racer, Symphony of Stars, and is said to be thoroughly enjoying the change in lifestyle since she took over his ownership. In the first few weeks, she spent a great deal of time getting him relaxed into his new surroundings by going for long, relaxing rides so she says that it was a “bit of a baptism of fire” when he had to take the place of her event mare, Lekker, who fell lame at the start of the four days of filming for the Blue Chip All Stars Academy at Talland. She says that “when Bob first saw the film crew, his eyes nearly popped out of his head as I think he thought that he was back racing again! At first, he was a little over-excited by the experience, but by having such an intense few days at Talland, it enabled us to really bond, and every day I saw a progression in his training.”
At the moment, Rhi is focusing on flatwork and dressage with Bob to get him balanced and supple before they start jumping, but she cannot wait to take him cross country and start eventing in the near future, as well as allowing him to enjoy a winter out hunting which she is sure he will love.
“Bob has the most honest, wonderful attitude to work and I am proud that he is an
ex-racehorse as I adore re-training them for eventing due to their athleticism and forward thinking mentality.
My other mare is an ex-flat racer and we have had great success since I took her on I hope the same will happen for Bob as we are forming a great partnership”.
If anyone would like to follow Bob’s progress from Racehorse to Event horse, follow Rhi’s page on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RLJEventing as well as Instagram and Twitter on @RLJEventing.
Rhi will be featuring in all five episodes of The Blue Chip All Stars Academy on Horse and Country TV throughout June and July with the season finale on Sunday 10th July. Will she and Bob win the much coveted opportunity to secure one years’ sponsorship from Blue Chip Feed which includes a selection of clothing for both horse and rider, as well as their choice of balancer and supplement for one horse, along with the chance to become Horse and Country TV’s newest blogger?