MARIA & MANIOUX
When/How did you & Manioux first meet? And was there love at first sight..?
Manioux was the type of horse I never thought I’d end up with. I wanted a schoolmaster, maybe even a nice warmblood, but most definitely not an unbroken paint stallion. As fate had it, I was convinced to go view him and I am glad I did. Because of bush fires that day, the three hour drive ended up taking almost 6 hours and so by the time I got there it was pitch black. I viewed him under a flash light and after he came up and demanded a bum scratch I knew this was the horse for me.
What discipline are you and Manioux interested in/currently focusing on?
Manioux and I are in the very early stages of our dressage training. Manioux is naturally round and picks up movements beautifully.
Does Manioux have any hidden talents?
Manioux will follow you in reverse demanding bum scratches, it is quite bizarre.
Do you train with a regular coach? If so who?
We train weekly with an awesome coach, his name is Colin.
What’s Manioux’s favourite treats?
Liquorice hands down. Although he hates how it gets stuck on his teeth. He makes the funniest faces when that happens.
Biggest achievement to date?
As silly as it may sound, we are learning together from scratch and so it is incredibly rewarding when we achieve a new goal together. Like a balanced canter or getting off my leg immediately.
Do you have any goals set in the coming year?
I promised my coach to do our first dressage test together this year, which is both exciting and nerve wrecking!
Who’s Manioux’s best friend and why?
Manioux likes whoever is parked in the paddock next to him, he makes a big effort to hang over the fence to say hi to his neighbours.
Does Manioux have any vices?
Other than demanding bum scratches, none!
Have you ever fallen off Manioux, if so how many times, and what happened?
Quite a few times! In the process of learning together it is easy to get confused, he sometimes misunderstand a command and I will sometimes mistake his insecurity for being cheeky. So yes, sometimes we don’t communicate well which has ended up with me in sand a few times, haha.
What makes Manioux so special?
Being in vet school I am often pressed for time or stressed. When I need a break or some quiet time I go see him. Some times I will just sit in the paddock or stable with him and he will always come up for a cuddle. He makes me feel happier when I need a little pick-me-up.