The horse world was shocked at the weekend at the tragic death of well-known rider Maria O’Grady wife of trainer Edward.
It’s understood Ms O’Grady was thrown from her horse while jumping a fence. Her fall while on the hunting field resulted in her tragic death.
It's important to think safety while out on a hunt and detailed below are just some safety tips to remember.
- Horses temperaments can change. Ride today's horse today. Just because your mare rode well on the last hunt does not mean she will be the same today. Notice and pay attention to changes in attitude and mood.
- Be careful when warming up. Let your horse get warmed up in the starting area take your time do not push the animal into a full gallop to warm up. A trout or walk will do.
- Remember the riders around you. Have a look out for the riders behind you if they get into trouble you can help but only after you ensure that you can stop and help safely.
- Keep a safe distance between you and the horse in front of you. It's like driving a car you have to allow stopping distance.
- If you feel out of control let the rider in front of you know. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
- If someone falls let the hunt master know immediately and let the person in front of you know.
- Make sure you have correct safety equipment. Spend the money on a good riding hat. It could save your life.
- Use checks and breaks to rest and relax your horse and yourself.
- At the end of the hunt wait for all the riders to come in from the field.
- If a rider is seriously injured during a hunt call emergency services. If a horse is loose Let others know. If you don’t feel comfortable and safe capturing the loose horse wait for help.