Queenslander Cameron Moffatt is having a great run at the moment. Recently back from New Zealand where he was part of the Australian Young Rider Team for the Trans-Tasman Challenge and now selected on the Queensland Young Rider Team for the Aquis Champions Tour. Moffatt is certainly a rider to watch for the future.
Name: Cameron Moffatt
Lives: Pittsworth, Qld
Occupation: Electrical Apprentice
At what age did you start riding and who introduced you? I have always ridden horses for as long as I can remember. Mum and dad introduced my sister and I to it as they both played polocrosse, so we spent a lot of our younger years going to carnivals and getting led around on ponies.
Tell us about your first horse: My first horse was a 13.2 hand grey gelding called Blue. He was a menace of a pony as there wasn’t a Moffatt kid riding that hadn’t been dumped by Blue. His trademark tactic was that he would over-jump a fence throwing you onto his neck, then, he’d put his head down and eat grass forcing you to slide down his neck, eliminating you from the class.
How many horses do you currently have in work? Currently I have four in work: Bellhaven Secret who is owned by Deb Heindl and Bronny Juet, Dolly Varden, HPS Minou, and a 6yo OTT called Izzy who I purchased at the end of last year.
Which horse is your current star and do you have any future stars? Dolly Varden would have to be my current star. She’s been my most consistent horse throughout my junior years winning and placing in many top classes. Although HPS Minou would be my future star. She’s a powerhouse and loves to work so I’m very excited to see where she ends up in the near future.
Who was the biggest influence to your riding? I’d have to say my cousin Robert Moffatt. He’s been my coach from the start and has really instilled a calm, but effective manner of going about my horses and my classes. He’s the man I turn to if I’m having trouble with anything or need a bit of advice.
What do you look for in a horse? I like something that has a positive attitude towards what it’s doing, and a willingness to learn. I like them to be active and forward flowing, and most importantly something that’s built uphill with a strong set of hindquarters.
How do you prepare your horse for a big class and what is important for your warm up? I like to jump mine over a few smaller fences early in the week. A couple of days out from the show I’ll give them a bit bigger jump, but no bigger than what they’ll be jumping at the show. It’s mainly to make sure they’re confident and on the job. I like to get into the warm-up early, so I’m not rushed. The warm up for me is just making sure the horse is confident and on the job when we go into the ring.
What are your biggest competitive achievements to date? My biggest achievements so far would be placing 2nd in the Sumer Classic junior final in 2016 and winning the 2017 1.20m inter-school national championship. Last year I came first in the Queensland country junior championship and ninth in the Australian junior championship.
You have recently returned from New Zealand where you competed in the Trans-Tasman Challenge, tell us a little about this experience. The Trans-Tasman New Zealand test was a great experience. I really enjoyed the challenge of riding the horses and having to adapt on the go to the feel of the horse. I got along quite well with all my horses and was lucky to ride some nice horses, which made the competition run a little smoother. Overall, I felt the competition was a good competitive class to be a part of. Credit must go to New Zealand on a well deserved win.
What are your short and long term goals? My short term goal would have to be to start in a World Cup class. Long term it would be producing a horse that I could one day take overseas.
Who are your role models (Australian and/or international)? Robert Moffatt and Scott Brash. I like how professional they are when they enter the ring, and how technically correct they are when they tackle a tough track.
What is the best piece of advice you have been given? It was given to me from Kohan Herbert, a rugby player I went to school with. He told me to “trust the process”. No matter what happens it’ll all fall in to place eventually.
Tell us a few things we don’t know about you. I used to play guitar back in school. I like following all kinds of sports. I used to ride show ponies until I was old enough to start jumping.
Who are your sponsors? Without my sponsors I wouldn’t be where I am today so a huge thanks need to go to them. They are Horseland Toowoomba, Peter Williams Riding apparel, Queensland Produce Distributors and Zandonà.