It is with my absolute pleasure that I can announce an exciting new collaboration for It's A Country Life, and with the re-launch on it's way I thought this a perfect time to introduce Yazmin Pinchen the gorgeous and amazingly talented International Show Jumper!
Yazmin has just announced she is pregnant and so will be writing entries for 'It's A Country Life' throughout her pregnancy, filling us all in on how on earth she is balancing horses and expecting a baby - exciting times ahead. X
I caught up with successful Show Jumper and mum to be to ask a few questions;
You've told It's A Country Life that you have just found out you're expecting, firstly a huge congratulations! How are you feeling about the news? Yes. I found out I was pregnant about a month ago, I've waited for my first scan until I told people just to be safe. Myself and my partner are extremely excited, seeing the scan made everything real and now we just can't wait to meet little baby. I've always loved children so I've no fear I won't be a good mum.
Do you feel you're prepared for the balance of equestrianism and pregnancy, or is that a bit daunting at the moment? I don't think you can prepare equestrian and pregnancy, there is never a good time for us ladies which is why Meredith Micheals- Beerbaum saved us woman by changing a rule to being able to freeze our points on the ranking system. I am currently still riding but soon to stop as I want the best for baby and don't want to be at risk. I will obviously miss the winter season but it only drives me more to do better next year when I'm back riding and achieve better things and make our baby proud.
You're a bit of a fashion and style icon in the Equestrian world, do you feel it is important to look good when you are out competing? 100% I feel fashion is important. It expresses who you are. You can tell a lot about a person from their appearance. I am extremely lucky to be sponsored by all the top brands, but being neat with your outfits makes a smarter finish. I love getting the day off and going shopping.
Tell us more about the string of horses you currently have? At home in Rusper, West Sussex I've a beautiful family stable. My parents have been amazing to me all my life and we have some amazing horses. We've only ever bought two horses that have already been produced or over the age of 7. All our horses we breed or buy at 2 or 3 years of age. My best horse Ashkari we bred and Van de Vivaldi we bought when he just turned 7. I've a few horses in foal to Vivaldi on the way and an embryo transfer with Ashkari and Vivaldi. That I cannot wait for. We have 15 horses, I have an Amazing 5* string of horses and an amazing younger horse section. I am extremely lucky and love what I do.
Are your family & friends supportive of your riding and of your news? My family have been really supportive of me and my partners news. My mum was only 24 when she had my sister and my parents have been married for 27 years now. Obviously like I said there isn't ever a good time, but we will use this time to give the older horse a break to be fresh and ready when I'm back and let the young ones have some fun in the field. We're a family and we stick together, aside from rumours that my dad is livid with me he's not. He's an amazing man and apart from the grandpa title he can't wait. My friends have been amazing, I've a small bunch of incredible friends in my life and they do everything they can to come and see me. I'm known for being a hermit so they know a night in chatting is what is required sometimes!!
Do you think it is important to have a close knit team around you, in terms of staff? I think a good team is very important, I've an amazing home rider and she keeps the horses going when I'm at shows. We try and look after everyone here to the highest standard. I understand it's a very hands on job so giving the girls holidays when they ask is always given. A positive team is what gets those positive results. It helps having my mum there at the shows she is my rock. We have a fantastic Physio who travels to shows, the best vets and farriers. The horses need the best care to perform to their best. There care is what is most important and I trust my team with that.
You have some very glamorous and prestigious sponsors, like Kep, Parlanti Roma & Cavelleria Toscana, but how do you balance beauty & fashion with your very dedicated equestrian lifestyle? I am guilty of online shopping. You can't beat coming home from a show to a parcel.. Usually an ASOS parcel. I have just started working with Arbonne. They're a botanical company that do make up, skin care and hair care.. They even do nutrition. I am qualified in make up and beauty so it is something I'm interested in. Now I'll have time off from horses I can put my time and energy into Arbonne and try and sell their amazing products.
In my spare time me and my family like to travel and somehow us girls always find a spa. You have to treat yourself sometimes and come away from the horses. My sponsors definitely help with keeping my outfits up to date when I'm on the horses. My sister lives in London - if I'm ever wearing something yuk she's the first to tell me to change !!
Where is your favorite place that you have competed? What is your favorite thing about competing both nationally and internationally? My favorite place to compete is Monte Carlo!! I was lucky to ride the Global Tour there a few years running. However Windsor Castle is taking over now, I always seem to do well there and the atmosphere is insane there!!
National shows tend to drag on, it makes it less appealing for us riders. If you there for the first class with a young horse and waiting for the last class with an older horse you should put the kettle on because it's going to be a long day!!! International shows are organised and there is very little waiting around. You always know a rough time. The competition is a higher level, it trains you to be able to handle tougher courses. National shows are vital though to be able to get those young horses out and prepare them for the internationals. I think the national shows let a few to many people in whereas international you usually have max of 50 riders a class.
Tell us how Show Jumping came about for you? Have you always ridden horses? I was born into an animal loving family. My mum rode up to 1m40 with my best mare Ashkari's mum 'Claydons Annie'. Myself and my sister had a pony and rode with mum. I wasn't ever as keen as my sister until I was about 10. She unfortunately gave up but I carried on. I did all the pony teams, riding for England at Cavan was highlight of my 28 years !! I rode junior, young riders and now am riding seniors. My dad worked for Chelsea football club so he wasn't horsey just competitive!! The mixture of my mums love for horses and dads competitive side made me want to ride to the highest standard. I've achieved some great results but I've a long way to go until I'm content. Many goals to achieve and many places to go.
The Show-Jumping scene is renowned for it's 'bitchiness', have you ever experienced this along your road to success and if so how did you cope with it? It's a real shame how the shows are bitchy but my friend Ellen Whitaker always tells me to stop listening to what people are saying and move on. It does effect me and my confidence but it's something that happens in most industries.
There's a lot of jealousy and anger towards people and it's a shame. I wish everyone would be more happy when someone wins and congratulate them with meaning. Life is to short to dislike people and talk about others. Everyone has their own situations going on and most likely don't need to hear nasty things behind their backs. Overall it probably makes me more hungry to win if I hear people knocking me down. You definitely find out your true friends along the journey. It's not always a bad thing, I just need to listen to Ellen more and rise above it.
Lastly, do you have any advice for young aspiring riders? My advice to young aspiring riders is to keep going !! Especially if someone is saying nasty things. More reason to prove them wrong. Get school done with, and if riding is what you want to do then make it happen. Be approachable and willing to learn from lots of different people. My school did not support my riding nor my school friends but I didn't let it stop me, I've carried on and achieved things I never imagined!! I will be at the next Olympics!! Make a goal and go for it.
It's A Country Life,