Introducing Maddie O’Carroll

Hi, I’m Maddie and I have been a member of the Hampshire Hunt Pony Club since I was nine years old. I am now nineteen and I have loved the years I have spent going to rallies, camps and competing for the HH.

I am very lucky to ride two of the most amazing horses and have qualified both of them for the Dengie Area competition in March.

Rooney is a 15.1hh roan Connemara gelding, who I have been riding for the past year. He is my best friend and always puts a smile on my face when I ride him. Rooney is owned by Steph Kelly, who used to be an active member of the HH. Rooney and I qualified for the Dengie Winter League championships at Warwickshire College last year, won our Arena competition and then after the ride-off we became Reserve Champion - it was an amazing weekend!


Sidney is owned by my trainer, Annie Whittet. He is a gentle giant at 16hh – well, he is a giant to me as I am quite short! Sid is the horse who has taught and guided me for the past two and a half years. We qualified for the Pony Club Championships for Intermediate Dressage in 2014. This was my first ever championship and the first major competition that I had ever ridden at and I couldn’t have thought of a better horse to ride at Chomondley Castle than him.

In preparation for this year’s Dengie competition, I have been having regular training sessions with Annie. We run through the movements in the tests like leg yield, shoulder-in, canter loops and medium trot so that I have the movements in my head and I know how to ride them. Sidney has qualified for the Intermediate dressage and his favourite movement is canter loops! He could canter to the centre line and back all day, so this we’ve got covered!

Rooney has qualified for the Open dressage. I have taken him to a few British Dressage Elementary classes to get him out and practising test riding. Whilst at home, I am getting him to stretch and work in a softer frame to keep him supple and loose.

I think that it is very import to feed my horses with good quality food so that they can work properly. Sid is eighteen and Rooney is seventeen, so feeding them correctly contributes to their performance. I feed them Dengie Hi-Fi Original, which releases energy slowly and gives them a good supply of fibre, which is also important for their digestives systems.

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