Madi and Zambo ready for the mane event
Source: Australian Olympic Committee
BUENOS AIRES 2018: As if preparing to take on the best young riders in the world at the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games (YOG) wasn’t a big enough challenge, Australian rider Madi Sinderberry will be doing it on a horse she’s known for just days.
After months of planning for the unknown, Australia’s sole equestrian representative for the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games (YOG), finally got to meet the horse she will be leading into the competition.
Just one day out from the YOG Opening Ceremony, 30 young equestrian athletes from around the globe were allocated their horses in a ticket lottery draw at the Club Hipico Argentino, where equestrian competition is due to take place in just days.
Condobolin local, Sinderberry, was allocated “Zambo,” a 13-year-old warmblood gelding.
“It was a hard process, because there was such a big unknown in the lead up to the Games, I had no idea what standard of horse I was going to get,” she said.
“Now, finally knowing which horse I’ve been allocated and to be able to spend some time with him over the next few days will give me a good idea of what the rest of the competition is going to be like.”
The connection between a horse and rider is vital to a successful run – and this connection is one Madi will need to build incredibly quickly.
The 17-year-old spent her first training session with Zambo figuring out what makes him tick, how he works and how to best build their relationship.
“My main priority is to spend as much time with Zambo as I can, doing whatever I can to make him happy with me and happy to do his job when it comes time to compete,” she said.
“We have three days of training before the competition, so we want to start off slow, not work him too hard and just keep him happy.
“We started out with some small jumps today and will progressively keep building his confidence as we head towards the competition,” she continued.
So far, Zambo has been receptive to the Year 12 student’s riding and training style.
“When I was riding Zambo around the arena for the first time, he was really focused on what he needed to do. His ears were pricked at the jumps and he was genuinely enjoying doing his job. He canters to the jump with no stopping or hesitation.”
Sinderberry isn’t phased by the tough competition at Buenos Aires, with the back-to-back U21 Australian Young Rider and NSW Young Rider Champ looking forward to the challenge of getting the best out of her borrowed horse and competing on the world stage.
“I’m very excited! We’re up against some strong contenders, but the plan is to just go out there and do the best we can and try to have some fun along the way!”
You can follow Madi’s YOG journey via our socials and watch the competition on the Live Stream HERE.
PROGRAM and RESULTS will be available HERE when available.