2017 has been phenomenal year for Emily Cooke, one of our youngest ‘EquidGellies’. With the amazing Lady’s Man (aka Taz) Emily achieved the superb accolade of EGB Supreme Champion winning the Manar Trophy and she also collected the Ross Trophy – Most Successful Home Bred, The Cairo Trophy – Highest Placed Partbred, Nippa Trophy – Champion Young Rider Emily Cooke and her pony Lady’s Man clocking up no fewer than 2288 EGB points this season, however Taz also competes in Pony Racing, Mounted Games and Pony Club activities whilst being fed solely on a forage and EquidGel® diet. Emily and her horses will continue to be sponsored by Equidiet for the 2018 season…Good Luck x
My journey: I had forever been looking for something to help keep my horse Merlin hydrated at shows as he was never one to drink just water, this is where EquidGel came in. After being recommended to me by a friend, I spoke to Sandra, the lady who developed it. I originally just started him on it purely to drink at shows but seeing how it changed his performance on the day keeping him hydrated and his energy levels up, not fizzy but focused, I put him solely on it as his feed, teaming it up with the EquidGrass which I find goes really well with it and he can't get enough of it!
After now being on the EquidGel and EquidGrass his condition is amazing, his coat and feet are great and he is now barefoot with no need for shoes whereas before they would chip without shoes on.
Then there is Stryker! At 27 he was looking well but lacking a little bit of condition and a nice coat. I had a scare in October after he started having seizures, after having a blood test it confirmed my thoughts- he had liver failure so was to be retired! When she heard of Stryker's condition, Sandra suggested that I put him on LamiGel, and very kindly gifted me a bag. Along with this and his Hepalyte we got the all clear no signs of liver failure in April! He is now back in full work and looking better than ever!!
Jojo the miniature Shetland is also on it and it has maintained her condition and prevented her getting lami
Our journey started at the beginning of 2016, after carrying out lots of research into feeding regimes, I came across EquidGel. I decided to contact Sandra to find out more. I visited their offices and consulted with Sandra about the best way forward in regard to feeding Mirrie a natural EquidGel and forage only diet for our Novice season which we started in July 2016, and we discussed how to adjust this new concept for moving up to Open and Advanced with our ultimate goal of qualifying for FEI ready for 2018.
With our goal in sight Sandra advised how to use EquidGel on a daily basis for optimum hydration, however with the step up in training she explained the use of the high performance EnduroGel to cope with the level of physical activity that would be required. My other major goal was to ride for the England team at the Home Internationals...Yes I know it would be two big asks of Mirrie, but she felt good and we had trained for over a year before starting to ride at Novice level 😉.
We actually got selected for the England Squad because of Mirrie's outstanding results, however unfortunately we encountered a blip at the Home Internationals and we were vetted out due to slight left fore lameness 😢.
She recovered quickly and I had to make the decision , do we carry on to qualify for FEI at Euston Park? Well...it was a 'no brainer' but unfortunately it was cancelled😔.
This meant that I had to decide...should I tick one off my 'bucket wish list' and compete at The Red Dragon to qualify? This was a major decision as we are based in Norfolk!! One heck of a long way to travel, but I was not phased because Mirrie would be perfectly hydrated for the whole journey. The decision was made, so we went for it. Training was rigorous and we used the steep embankments of the A11 to build up her stamina.
At The Red Dragon, Mirrie was so keen, all she wanted to do was race up and down those huge mountains but I had to rein her in as I just needed to get home safely with no injuries...excitedly we went on to qualify for FEI by finishing 8th in the Little Dragon fuelled exclusively on EquidGel and a little EquidChop when she wanted it en route...
She did amazingly, she felt great, full of focused energy finishing her 80km with a Grade 1. We were also pleasantly surprised when we bagged a prize for "Best Condition" and "Best Shod" which I am really proud to have achieved in this discipline.
I will continue competing at FEI level in 2018 using EquidGel, the feed I started with nearly 2 years ago and now EnduroGel when she needs the extra performance.
We are really looking forward to 2018.
Julie Payne, Team GB