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William and Pippa Funnell Set the Stage for Strong Foundations at Castle Leslie

Monday 7th April 2014

Last weekend Castle Leslie and Charles Owen welcomed William and Pippa Funnell to Ireland for two days packed with learning and it was a rousing success. Riders from multiple countries and every level of riding enjoyed semi-private lessons with both William and Pippa for an unforgettable experience.

William and Pippa Funnell run The Billy Stud - a unique joint venture between William, Pippa and Donal Barnwell that brings together all their experience in show jumping, eventing and breeding. Their knowledge has created a winning formula for consistently breeding and producing champion sports horses for the future.

Charles Owen chose to invite William and Pippa to Castle Leslie for the clinic because of their renown in producing horses and riders with strong foundations – the cornerstone of a safe partnership. As Charles Owen’s motto is “For A Safer World” the clinic enabled the company to further its mission to bring safety to the equestrian industry.

The Billy Stud breeds over 80 mares each year and when the foals are born they follow a methodical plan that gives them the base for future success. Every horse gets broken in as a three-year-old and spends four to six weeks in consistent, structured work. As four-year-olds the horses are sent to William’s team for basic walk/trot/canter and some small jumping before moving on to Pippa’s team later for more advanced flatwork. Every horse whether or not they are going to be an eventer or showjumper is started hacking out and jumping small cross-country obstacles.

The Billy Stud’s process of starting and training their horses crosses over to William and Pippa’s teaching method. Both instructors are adept at pinpointing the weak areas of both the horse and rider and working with the partnership to develop stronger skills. The clinic gave riders a different view on how they should develop with their horses as individuals.

William’s teaching and training techniques pair perfectly with Charles Owen’s mission and the company is so pleased that he is part of the Charles Owen family of sponsored riders.

“I would like to thank Pippa and William for taking the time to host such a wonderfully educational clinic as well as Castle Leslie for graciously hosting it,” said Director of Marketing, Danielle Santos. “Charles Owen hopes to continue to share our passion for education and safety by hosting more clinics with our strong line up of sponsored riders in the future. 

About Castle Leslie

As one of Europe’s finest equestrian playgrounds, Castle Leslie Estate offers memorable horse riding holiday experiences for riding enthusiasts of all levels. The Castle hotel in Ireland is located in County Monaghan and is only 80 minutes from Dublin airport and 60 minutes from Belfast airport. Nestled on 1,000 acres of undulating Irish countryside, dotted with ancient woodlands and glittering lakes, the Estate offers an idyllic setting for outdoor activity and adventure. It is the perfect place to discover the thrill of exploring the beautiful Irish countryside on horseback. Castle Leslie welcomes riders of all ability and age groups, as long as you’re over four! They offer expert tuition, gentle hacks and exhilarating cross-country rides.

About Charles Owen & Co. 

Known throughout the world as the leader in equestrian helmet design, Charles Owen & Co. represents more than 100 years of innovation and style for a safer world. Each Charles Owen helmet is handcrafted using the highest quality materials. With the largest range of helmet styles and shapes, independently certified to up to four international equestrian safety standards, Charles Owen offers a wider range of protection in a potential accident.