Here we are in Norway, the day before you compete once again for your country in the Nations Cup, you must be delighted to be here?
Yes I am very delighted to be here to and be representing my country once again, the weather isn’t fantastic but the ground is good and hopefully my horse will jump well on the team.
Your horses are going very well this year, I was very impressed with some of the performances out in Portugal – what do you put this down to?
Yes, we had a fantastic show in Portugal over the six week tour and all the horses jumped really well. I put it down to a great team behind me. We have a great nutritionist and have fantastic feed from Saracen and of course great support with the grooms and everybody else that is involved behind the scenes. The horses were really relaxed and fresh for the whole of the six weeks.
You recently moved to your new establishment, do you think this will increase the performance of the horses even more with all your new fantastic facilities in future?
I would like to think so! We have moved from just outside Ipswich to just near Bury St Edmunds, so it wasn’t a massive move. The new place has a lovely all-weather gallops, a really big new arena and some grass gallops, as well as fantastic hacking. The horses seem to be really settled there already, so hopefully they’ll stay fit and fresh and we can keep onwards and upwards this year.
I know you have a number of good young horses to produce this year, which of them do you think we should be watching out for?
Yes, we have got some great young horses. I would say probably the one that I rate the highest is a six-year-old called Alicerova, she is by Romanov out of a Contender mare and she did really well in Portugal – I have high hopes for her.
Can you explain how the World Ranking System works for International Riders like yourself?
Yes, basically ** Star Shows and above you have at least one world ranking class, which means that the prize fund is over 25,000 Euros and for those classes you get ranking points depending on where you come – so first-place gets 50 points, second 45 points etc. Points are awarded right down to 16th place and these then go into the World Ranking Table.
Where else will you be competing in the next few months so we can follow your progress?
I’m going to be doing a couple of French Shows and then I’ve got the four-star show up Bolesworth, which is up in Cheshire. I’ll also do a couple of County Shows: the Hertfordshire County Show and the Suffolk County show, before I then go off to Belgium in July. So a very busy time!
Good luck Philip!