In a new series, we’re asking the top names in equestrianism to reveal their most treasured pieces of equestrian kit. Our inaugural guest blogger is talented event rider Vittoria Panizzon who represented Italy at the 2012 London Olympics riding Borough Pennyz. She lives in the Cotswolds and runs a busy yard with 16 horses. Read on for Vittoria’s most coveted equestrian kit…
1. My grooming kit
I’ve had exactly the same things in it since Pony Club: a dandy brush, a hoof pick, a body brush, a metal curry comb, a mane comb and a rubber curry comb for teasing out the winter coat in spring. Oh, and baby oil to shine up noses, knees and the area around the eyes. Just don’t use too much, it can make the coat rather sticky! £13.50 from Derby House
2. Canter conditioning spray
The ultimate horsey hair product for silky, tangle-free manes and tales. I even spray it on my own hair at competitions when I haven’t had time to wash it. £14.80 from Derby House
3. Equissage massage pad
I think I’d be bucked off a lot more without my Equissage massage pad! It helps loosen up a ‘cold back’ by delivering powerful cycloidal (three-way) vibrations to the whole body, which have been scientifically proven to improve local blood circulation, lymphatic drainage, relaxation and joint mobility. It’s rather like a good sports massage, warming up a horse before a competition or cooling them down after hunting, breaking down the excess lactic acid and chilling them out.
4. Pariani saddles
These elegant, close contact saddles are made in Italy from beautiful, soft leather ensuring they are extremely comfortable for both horse and rider. They’re more technical than many saddles out there, helping me to balance in the correct position and communicate effectively with the horse.
5. Ariat gloves
I like wearing thick, warm gloves in winter but these Tek Grip ones from Ariat are super grippy and still have plenty of feel. I can wear them to fasten a bridle and do up a rug although admittedly I still struggle to send text messages! £22.50 from Derby House
6. My new lorry
My long-awaited Empire horse box arrived this year and is absolutely brilliant. It’s not an enormous monster – it only takes four horses – but it has storage for feed and rugs underneath and, crucially, a large fridge and big, comfy beds in the living accommodation.
7. A really good quality broom
I didn’t know what a good broom was until I saw the ones the Americans were using at the World Equestrian Games this year. A good broom gets the yard looking pristine in seconds and is kind on your back. The Derby House Equestrian broom costs £20.62.
8. Pure feeds
I truly believe that my horses have been more chilled out since I discovered The Pure Feed Company. The mixes are low sugar and low starch so they don’t fizz them up too much and they’re fortified with optimal levels of vitamins and minerals. For more information see here
9. A quality turn out rug
Good turnout rugs are very important to me as I like to keep horses out as much as possible all year round. It must be warm, light, easy to put on and well designed to prevent rubbing on the shoulders or mane. I’m a fan of the Derby House medium-weight standard turn out and I also love H-Zone turn out rugs. I came across the brand at Olympia and have been seriously impressed by the quality, the warmth and the extremely reasonable prices. And they don’t rub! See here for more information.
10. Ariat Grasmere boots
I wouldn’t usually choose a boot with laces but these are utterly amazing, padded the whole way up the leg, very stylish and warm as toast. I haven’t had cold toes once! £245 from Derby House