This month's edition of Stable Talk features a gorgeous bay mare who caught our attention on social media. We had been admiring her apparent flair and talent over the cross country course and her elegance in the dressage arena. When we saw a photo of her modelling a Caldene dressage saddle pad we knew this mare and her human, Suntosha Barker from NSW, must have style! So we wanted to find out all about them...
Offical name: Sphinx
Stable name: Sphinx
Nick name/s: Sphinxy
Human: Suntosha Barker
Age: 7 years
Colour: Bay / dark brown
How long have you been with your human Suntosha and what were you doing before you found each other?
I have been with Suntosha for 12 awesome months. I am having so much fun with her and am loving all the experience and opportunities I am getting to have with her. My journey with Suntosha so far has been a smooth and exciting ride! Before I met Suntosha I was living in QLD with an amazing eventer named Charlotte Price. Charlotte had been doing eventing with me and training me, so I could go on to someone who would love to do eventing with me, someone that could train me and together as a team go up the levels and have a great time doing so.
What have you done so far with your human, and what would you like to help her achieve this year?
So far we have been doing lots of dressage training with our coaches Ann Behringer and Di Jenkyn. Suntosha and I both love dressage training as every time we train together we are starting to figure out more and more about each other and develop a fabulous bond. We have also been doing a bit of showjump training with our show jump coaches Clint Beresford and Grant Hughes and love every opportunity we get to have a lesson with them.
Suntosha and I have formed a wonderful bond which I love and cherish lots!! This year Suntosha and I have been to Canberra eventing in March, which was such a lovely event. We did very well and I am happy with my human and how she performed. I would love to help her achieve lots of great goals and to help her out by being the best horse I can be. I believe if we both put our minds together and believe in each other we can be the best team possible!
What is your favourite phase of eventing and why? Is this also your human's favourite phase?
X-COUNTRY!!!. I love X country as it is something I am strong and brave at. I love the thrill and adrenaline rush I get when I am galloping out on the open field with the wind flowing through my hair and jumping many different fences and working on my pace and control, I feel brave and fierce out on course as my human is always encouraging me and at the end she always gives me big pats, kisses, cuddles and my favourite Carrots!! Suntosha's favourite would also be X country. She always tells me she loves it because she feels safe on me loves it when we work as a team galloping up to jumps and dropping down banks. We both agree we love the feeling of working as a team and pushing each other to our safe limits!
What other things do you like to do with your human?
We are always traveling together, so when we are at home Suntosha likes to gives me brushes and pats while she plays music and we always have fun doing that. I also love taking pictures with my human and going and playing in the water.
You seem to have a natural talent for modelling. Do you have any other special talents?
I do love the limelight, cameras flashing and humans calling me saying "Sphinx over here", "click click" . When I am away from all that I have a talent for taking selfies, my human Suntosha is either taking boomerangs of me for Instagram or we are taking a selfie with funny filters on it. I also have a special talent for being a good girl while my human is plaiting me up and getting me looking beautiful ready for me to trot down that centre line looking flawless.
Do you have any paddock companions? Do you get along well with them?
Yes! His name is Nugget. Well, his real name is Brenwon Saturn or his human calls him Captain Nugget or Mr Nugget. He is a light bay horse and quite stocky and manly. Yes we get along very well, he looks out for me when I am sleeping and we also have a great chat at the end of the day about how each other's day was and life in general. Sometimes we plot things together about our humans just to be funny.
What are your favourite things in the world?
Carrots! Carrots! And more carrots!
If you were a human celebrity, who would you be and why?
My human believes that if I was a human celebrity I would be a younger Sally Pearson as I have got the spring in my jump and I can run fast like a sprinter. Sally and I also share in common jumping and both love to do it! I think I could also be Gigi Hadid as I love modelling. Gigi has the whole "goals" look going on and I believe I could pull off going down the runway of a fashion show and modelling brands.
Many thanks to Sphinx's mum Suntosha Barker for helping her with this interview.