Tuesday, June 25, 2024
HomeSportFrom showjumping to working with Liam Payne

From showjumping to working with Liam Payne

Yazmin Pinchen, 26, is a professional showjumper living in Rusper, West Sussex. She rides Titanium Z in international competitions, a horse owned by One Direction's Liam Payne.

I started horse riding when I was three and have been around horses ever since.

My parents got me into it originally as they were both involved in horses.

Watching mum and the showjumpers inspired me, but I always loved horses and had an interest. I was very fortunate that my parents were also interested.

My sister was actually more into it than me, and I used to watch her ride and win. I’ll never forget her fist-pumping when she beat me in a pony class.

Competing in showjumping

I love the adrenalin from showjumping, riding into a large arena with the crowd cheering you on.

Having a connection with an animal and jumping a 1.60m fence is something I am amazed at.

Read more: Horse riding gave me the confidence to follow my dreams

When you’re in the arena, anything on your mind just goes. You enter a new place, the adrenalin takes over and you feel alive.

That drives me to continue, no matter what.

Going professional

Becoming a professional showjumper didn’t come easy, a lot of work and sacrifices came.

I left school early and didn’t continue onto college, which meant I dropped my social life from school to pursue my dreams.

Of course, I made amazing friends from the showjumping world but I had to make decisions young. I rode for Great Britain when I was only 13 years old and from that moment  I knew I wanted to ride professionally and ride in the Olympics.

Liam Payne from One Direction

The partnership with Liam Payne is something I am still so overwhelmed by.

He owns a few horses so he knows about the showjumping world. He is really interested in learning about the industry.

Having a few common connections, it all just came together, and here I am riding for him

When I first heard he was looking into purchasing a horse for me to ride I screamed with excitement.

It was so amazing to think he thought of me as a good enough rider to ride for him and represent him in the showjumping industry.

I am totally honoured to ride with his logo and produce his horse, Tommy. It’s something I am forever grateful for that he believed in me and my journey to the Olympics.

Spidge Event Photography

A great partnership

I have a great partnership with Liam. We work closely together to form a plan for Tommy.

I will always let him know of shows I plan to go to and I send him every video from every round I do.

I am really lucky that Liam is passionate about our sport and the producing of young horses to get to the top level. Liam is very laid back and is just enjoying seeing his horse progress.

The horse Liam purchased is known in the stable as Tommy, but in the ring, he is Titanium Z.

My advice for aspiring showjumpers

For people who want to get into showjumping stay strong, don’t let any setbacks defeat you.

I’ve had a really tough few years but if anything it has pushed me to excel and prove to myself that I am capable of getting back to the top.

Continue to practice as often as you can; even the top riders are still learning.

Love your horse, form a partnership and trust each other, this is something I truly believe in.

And most of all enjoy it. There will always be bad days, but on the good days, smile. We have the best job ever.

To find out more, visit: www.yazminpinchen.co.uk



Charlotte Harding
Charlotte Harding
Charlotte is a journalist and the co-founder of The Women's Work Collective.


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