Traditional wisdom

Already at the age of 19, Tony Newbery was one of the champion riders of the British team. He has represented his country on the most important international competition fields as part of the most prestigious Nations Cup. Today he is the team leader of the Juniores and Young Riders teams in Britain.

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  • #trainer

Susanna Cottica Animo

Tony Newbery offers young people all his experience as a rider and horseman and is for all of them not only a trainer but also an important mentor.
"I think that success is due to work, to commitment and to dedication says Tony - Successful riders are with their horses 24/7. Their lives are the horses. And it’s this passion that brings success. Everything else is complementary.
Today the financial aspect has become crucial. I remember when I was a boy, in 1973, my father bought me two horses for a total value of £ 26,000. With these two horses I took part in the Grand Prix of Hickstead, Aachen and many Nations Cups. Today, in order to have the same opportunity, you would need to spend millions of euros! But it was a different life then. I remember Michael and John Whitaker, when we went into competition together and we slept in the vans. We worked a lot and made many sacrifices. In the last 30/40 years the sport has evolved a lot, starting from the breeding; Today horses are bred to be athletes and rearing increasingly improves and creates extraordinary horses. When we were younger, this wasn't the case. There was more hard work involved and the circuits were different. Today the technical level is very high, barriers fall easily because they are lightweight, the circuits are faster and more delicate. Today the role of field director at every level is increasingly important; the proper path is that one that allows you to learn and that is educational and trains the horses. Pitfalls and errors are destructive; errors that occur due to our mistakes are constructive. But while everything evolves and grows, the money increases and rules the roost. What will never change is the spirit of sport. Today you can enjoy victory and you are in seventh heaven, tomorrow you lose and you find yourself in a dark place. This is the law of sport and never changes. So even young people who today have everything they need without too much effort struggle with the harsh reality that no spending can change.
​That's why our sport is so educational, because to succeed, you need to be horsemen, you have to know who the horses are and spend time with them as much as possible.
When we were young we lived with our horses, both at home and during competitions. We cleaned them, we prepared them and we slept in the vans. Now young people have grooms and long vans, everything is available, the best materials, the best equipment and so on. But all of this doesn't necessarily create a champion. The champion comes from within, from the heart, from living with the horses. This will never change.
To become good horsemen, you need to know the horses, to know the horses you have to spend time with them. They are very intelligent and sensitive.... When you arrive at the stable in the morning and the horses come and greet you, as if they were saying ‘Here I am, I was waiting for you, ride me first’ .. this means you're on the right track but if when you arrive, they turn away from you and move off, then it's best you stop and start from scratch again.
Now I'm 60 and I wouldn't change a thing in my life. I'm a Coach of young riders in Britain and I am very pleased with this. It is a very important and exciting task. I try to teach them the basic rules of good riding, the simplest ones but without which you don't make progress: ride leaning forward, balanced, with rhythm.... "