Taurus Rider Jemima Gray’s Latest Installment from the British Eventing Field!

Jemima New Lancer Boots Sept 2014

Taurus Footwear supports event rider Jemima Gray who competes her two horses Foxy and Murphy in British Eventing. Taurus provides Jemima functional footwear for riding at home, walking the courses at events and of course, for looking smart at competitions!

In our latest blog Jemima updates us on her recent equestrian adventures including her brand new Taurus Lancer Boots!

Jemima says…

“After Barbury, Murphy and I headed to Homme House and our performance was much improved with a tense dressage mark of 35 but a lovely SJ round, just having the first fence down as we weren’t awake! He then stormed round the XC, picking up a few time faults as I wasn’t pushing him and felt really ill (due to recently diagnosed Coeliac Disease) and he had to look after me, what a saint!

Three days later we took Foxy to Aston le Walls for the 100u18. A nice test of 30.5 and a double clear inside the time for 4th meant that we qualified for Weston u18 Championships in the autumn as part of the Central team, I was thrilled!

Next stop was Milton Keynes with Murphy in the Novice. He started off with a lovely dressage test (even though we were in the arena directly after Izzy Taylor!) to put us in the top ten after the first phase. Warming up for the SJ he was a bit lazy and casual with his legs which is unlike him and I considered withdrawing (always go with your gut instinct!) but decided not to. Murph jumped an average round, picking up 8 faults which I was disappointed with as his show jumping’s improved recently and I wasn’t expecting that!
XC he felt reluctant to move forward, difficult to turn, very unwilling and dazed. We had two really unnecessary stops at easy fences, he just didn’t feel as if he was enjoying it, odd because normally he becomes completely overly excited in the start box!

I knew there was something wrong and when we got back to the lorry, Mum admitted that she tried a new type of calmer just before the dressage…. If I had known we wouldn’t have run. Very annoying as we were in a good position, but also relieved that there was a reason for his lack of performance and enthusiasm, hopefully he’ll be back to his usual self once it wears off!

My Mother is now keeping a very low profile…

After Milton Keynes we were supposed to run at Keysoe a week later, however I haven’t been coping with my Coeliac Disease at all well, and became really ill a few days before, although I was a lot better by the weekend, Mum withdrew me.

It was completely her decision and if it were up to me I would have gone without a second thought!  Unfortunately we were entered for the CIC* at Gatcombe, but the class had over 100 entries, meaning that the chances of us getting in were very slim so we have entered the Novice there instead, very disappointing but hopefully we will get lots more chances to run at a higher level next season!

I also wanted to take the opportunity to say thank you so much to Taurus for generously sending me some new Lancer Boots! The quality of the boots is outstanding and even after using my old boots for over a year, they still look brand new but it was great to have a sparkly new pair for the next season!”

To find out more about the wide range of equestrian and country living footwear supplied by Taurus Footwear, including the Lancer Boots worn by Jemima Gray, visit the website http://www.taurusfootwear.co.uk or Tel: 01328 851 432


Complete Your Yard Tasks Colorado Style!

Michaela 3

The Colorado Boots are a personal favourite of Taurus sponsored rider, show jumper and trainer Michaela Huntington.

The robust and generously fitting Colorado boot is made of water-resistant waxy, nubuck leather. The stylish and functional boot is fully lined in Cambrelle to enhance breathability whilst the boots also feature honeycomb elastic side panels allowing ease of fit and include two leather pull loops at the back of the boot.

The sturdy moulded rubber soles are designed for riding but are equally practical in the yard allowing horse riders to stay comfortable on their feet all day and save their long boots just for horse riding.

Offered in black or brown to suit any equestrian wardrobe and priced at £56.95 the Colorado boots are sure to last- whatever the weather brings!

For more details visit the website www.taurusfootwear.co.uk  

Taurus Sponsored Rider Michaela Huntington Shares Her Recent Equine Scare!

EQ life aug kyla column

In our latest blog we share with you an extract of recent article in EQ Life magazine where Taurus sponsored rider and local Show Jumper and trainer Michaela Huntington shares with us a disastrous real-life event highlighting the pitfalls of horses and her recent successes with her lovely chestnut mare Zena!

Michaela says…

“Life has a habit of catching you out when you least expect it. There you are, trundling along in your own little world, in your daily routine when the least expected pitfall can open up under your feet!

My home bred four year old, Frankie, now fully BS registered and proving the most delightful project you could wish for, with an immediate four double clears in British Novice and two in Discovery frightened the life out of himself and all his connections. In the lorry at the end of the day, he was first on board having finished his classes and had calmly eaten his haynet and waiting to leave. All three horses were now loaded and we were minutes away from closing the ramp and setting off for home. The next thing I knew there was a dreadful commotion with all three animals letting me know that something was very wrong. The youngster had managed to squeeze his whole head through the very small gap between the wall and the iron partition and was thoroughly wedged, completely unable to move and terrified.

I was so grateful to the wonderful people who ran to our aid at Codham Equestrian Centre, and was so fortunate Alex Fuller, a local vet just setting up his solo practice in our area was at the show and we were able to get the right drugs immediately into Frankie’s system. He so nearly could have died or at least had a broken jaw but it seems we have all been so lucky to be left with nerve damage and prolapsed muscles on the left hand side of his face, all of which should return to normal given time. I am now resigned to him missing his four-year old season after only just beginning but am grateful things are not a lot worse.

Zena’s success

My chestnut mare, Zena, has collected all her Newcomer double clears for next year and is now working on her Foxhunter classes. She is really settling into her work and I feel we are growing as a partnership.

Michaela, show jumper, riding instructor and trainer wears Taurus Footwear at every equestrian occasion. She competes in her stunning, long back leather Lancer Boots, walks the course in her Holkham Country Boots and works on the yard at home in the functional Colorado Boots! To see the range available including the boots personally selected by Michaela Huntington visit the website www.taurusfootwear.co.uk 

Caring for Nubuck and Suede Footwear

Special care needs to be taken in caring for both and suede and nubuck shoes.  Although no often we cannot see a visible difference between the two types of leather;  suede is in fact sanded on the inner layer of the skin and nubuck is sanded on the outer or exterior  skin. As a generalisation since the outside layer of a skin is tougher, nubuck tends to be harder wearing!

Firstly a good brush is a must for caring for Suede and Nubuck. The fine fibres you see standing up on suede & nubuck is referred to as the nap. A suede brush will keep the nap looking fresh and help remove dust and dirt that gets trapped within the nap. Regular brushing is an easy and an effective way to care for your shoes. For worn down nap, brush vigorously with the middle wire bristles then finish with the nylon bristles.  A suede brush can also be effective in removing some stains!

If brushing your boots does not remove the stains or marks on your footwear using a diluted universal footwear cleaner can provide the method to get rid of oil or grease stains. Remember do not wet the shoes excessively when using a cleaner but simply enough to spread the cleaner!

The best time to protect you suede or nubuck shoes is to waterproof them before you wear them and regularly during their lifetime . Taurus Footwear offers a selection of the widely exclaimed, top quality NikWax Products. Available direct from the Taurus online store are the Waterproofing Conditioner and the Waterproofing Wax! So why not get your boots prepared for the autumn months and the more unpredictable weather today?

Top Tips from Taurus on Waterproofing your Suede or Nubuck:

  • Once waterproofed try not to handle your Taurus Footwear too much as this can reduce effectiveness of the Nikwax product.
  • The waterproofing treatment needs to be used regularly, especially after becoming wet or after using a suede brush.
  • Make sure  your item of footwear is totally dry before applying the product.
  • Remember the waterproofing wax or conditioning will only prevent water and most liquid stains. It will not protect against scuffing so treat your boots kindly!

For more information about the range of footwear and leather conditioning and waterproofing products available from Taurus Footwear visit the website at www.taurusfootwear.co.uk 


Congratulations to Taurus Rider Michaela Huntington

Michaela 3

Team Taurus had a thrilling day attending The Longines Hickstead International to watch our sponsored rider Show Jumper Michaela Huntington compete in the Winter Novice Championships.

With fence heights of 1.25m and plenty of fierce competition the class made for exciting viewing. After jumping clear in her first round Michaela made it through to the jump off and completed her round in just 44.94 seconds with just one unlucky pole down resulting in her taking sixth place.

Michaela has only had her stunning mare Alegro Z, known at home as Zena for 9 months and we were very proud of them both at the event. Only the top two placed riders from any qualifying British Show Jumping event go forward to compete in this prestigious championship class at Hickstead highlighting not just the achievement of being part of the event and the top qualifying 25 riders but also putting in perspective the fantastic placing on the day.

Michaela, show jumper, riding instructor and trainer wears Taurus Footwear at every equestrian occasion. She competes in her stunning, long back leather Lancer Boots, walks the course in her Holkham Country Boots and works on the yard at home in the functional Colorado Boots! To see the range available including the boots personally selected by Michaela Huntington visit the website www.taurusfootwear.co.uk 

Taurus Attends Hickstead International

Team Taurus are very excited to be attending Hickstead International to watch our very own sponsored rider Michaela Huntington compete on Wednesday 30th July.

The Longines Royal International Horse Show sees the elite of many equestrian disciplines compete side by side staging the peak of winter national showjumping qualifiers and the home to the British Showjumping Winter Finals.

Michaela, a showjumper, trainer and riding instructor will be flying the flag for Taurus Footwear in the Winter Novice and we wish her the best of luck with her lovely mare Alegro Z, known at home as Zena!


michaela huntington and zena

Exclusive Update from Taurus Rider Jemima Gray; Part 2


Taurus Footwear supports event rider Jemima Gray who competes her two horses Foxy and Murphy in British Eventing. Taurus provides Jemima functional footwear for riding at home, walking the courses at events and of course, for looking smart at competitions!

In the second part of our blog  Jemima updates us on her recent equestrian adventures including her educational experience at the challenging Barbury International and  her first event back with Foxy after his injury!

Jemima says…

“There were six days between Barbury Castle and Purston, which isn’t very long as normally horses are given two weeks between competitions. However as Murphy is fit and well with lots of natural energy he arrived at Barbury International on top form.
Our dressage was the day before the jumping phases so after Murphy produced a nice test (but still lots to work and improve on) we went down to the cross country start box to walk the course. Barbury Horse Trials is set in the stunning Marlborough Downs, the course is always beautifully presented, using the undulating ground to provide some unusual fences. The course was definitely the biggest and most technical I’d ever done and there were some questions that I was sure Murphy and I hadn’t experienced before.
Barbury also holds a prestigious three star class, attracting top riders from all over the world and giving the event an amazing atmosphere.
Murphy and I posted a respectable 32.5, which was just outside the top ten after the dressage. He then went on to jump a lovely show jumping round, unfortunately just tipping the planks, adding four faults to our score.
As we galloped out of the cross country start box, I let my nerves get to me and I was gutted to have a really stupid stop at fence 3 (a very wide table.) We were on the wrong stride coming into it and I should have kicked on, however I just froze and poor Murph couldn’t do it without some help as we came in very close and he didn’t have any choice but to stop.
After popping it the second time he flew round the tricky parts of the course, including the two waters until we came to fence 14 (a step up bounce to a rail.) It was one of the fences we hadn’t encountered before and looking back on it, I should have ridden it completely differently. Murph jumped up the step far too quickly, I should have brought him back to a slower, bouncier canter to give us time to gather ourselves together for the rail. However his big jump up the step left him no room to jump the rail, lesson learnt and I was much more effective the second time and he pinged round the rest of the course.
We had, what you would describe to be an educational run, I was thrilled with the first two phases and I’m sure – had I been more positive – the cross country wouldn’t have been a problem and we would have finished in 8th place in a section full of professionals.
Moving on from Barbury, I had a distraction in the form of taking Foxy to his first BE event since his injury last April. We were going to Tweseldown to compete in the BE90 class, running HC. (HC means that the combination cannot get placed, due to the horse or rider being over qualified for the class, and the run is just for experience.) I was completely overly excited at the thought of eventing my favourite pony again, but mindful that we would have to check the going and not push him, due to his lack of recent competitions.
Foxy warmed up nicely and posted a Dressage score of 32.5 which was in the top 5, we had the last fence down in the Show Jumping, very unlucky and due to being out of practise! Warming up for Cross Country, Foxy could barely be bothered to jump the practise fences, I was quite worried that he wasn’t fit enough and he wasn’t up to it after all these months of careful rehabilitation.
I needn’t have worried, the complete schoolmaster that he is, as soon as Foxy heard the starter counting down from 10 seconds, he knew exactly what was going on and towed me into the start box (I had absolutely no choice) and shot off like a rocket down to the first fence. I had instructions to take it very slowly and carefully, not hesitating to pull up if there was a problem. I am certain that Foxy understands English, he could have gone round the course without a rider, he was listening for the whistles to tell him when a fence was coming up and being so strong I had to really take a hold before each jump in an attempt to slow him down.
It was the most enjoyable round I’ve ever had, mostly because I was on a pony that knew exactly what his job was and having so much fun doing it. We had no trouble round the course and when we came through the finish flags, I couldn’t believe that I cried!
If we weren’t running HC we would have come 5th (2nd without the pole!) I couldn’t have been happier as we weren’t 100% certain that he would stand up to the rigours of eventing again after his injury, however I’m thrilled to say that Foxy’s back with a vengeance!
Jemima competes, trains and works in her range of the Taurus Footwear Boots including The Lancer Long Boot, The Kentucky Jodhpur Boot and the Holkham Country Boot.  To find out more ​about the fabulous range of equestrian leather footwear from Taurus Footwear including the boots selected by eventer Jemima Gray visit the website www.taurusfootwear.co.uk 

Exclusive Update from Taurus Rider Jemima Gray; Part 1 of 2

jemima purston

Taurus Footwear supports event rider Jemima Gray who competes her two horses Foxy and Murphy in British Eventing. Taurus provides Jemima functional footwear for riding at home, walking the courses at events and of course, for looking smart at competitions!

In our latest blog, which is part 1 of 2  Jemima updates us on her recent equestrian adventures which is proving busy now the summer holidays have begun!

Jemima says…

“My Summer Holidays have begun, and I’m having an absolutely amazing time!
After Farley Hall, Murphy and I went to Tweseldown Novice and he started out with lovely test leaving us in the top few combinations after Dressage. The Show Jumping was quite technical and up to height, but Murph flew round, just having a couple of really unlucky poles (jockey error!) Cross Country was causing lots of problems, with a difficult water and coffin combination.
Just before my round there was a twenty minute hold on the course as a rider had fallen at the rail and the frangible pins had broken, stewards tried their best to repair the fence but in the end that element was removed so riders only had to jump the ditch and hedge. Murphy jumped everything beautifully, without a problem and we finished with 3 time penalties, leaving us in 15th place.
​Between Tweseldown and my next event, I went on a family holiday to Italy, while the ponies went to stay with Murphy’s old owner, who looked after them brilliantly and was a huge help.
After we came back from holiday, I went to Charlotte Agnew’s yard with Murphy as a working pupil for a week. As usual I learnt lots, rode some lovely horses and I really felt that Murph and I moved a big step forward, however it was very hard work (but rewarding!)
At the end of the week we headed to Purston Manor with Murphy in the Novice. Although he was very overly excited and difficult in the Dressage, he went on to do a faultless double clear, one of the very few he’s ever done at Novice level so needless to say, I was completely thrilled!
I have been competing in my Taurus Lancer boots and training in my short Kentucky Boots. I cannot recommend these boots highly enough, it is the perfect combination!
For more information about the fabulous range of equestrian leather footwear from Taurus Footwear including the pairs eventer Jemima Gray wears visit the website www.taurusfootwear.co.uk and to keep up to date with Jemima’s progress don’t miss our next blog!

Top Tips for Horse Trials with Taurus Rider Michaela Huntington!

Eq Life July 2014 (2)


Eq Life July 2014 (2)

Local riding instructor Michaela Huntington offers some advice for improving your standings within the three eventing disciplines.

Essex-based Michaela Huntington is sponsored by Taurus Footwear, who produce competitively-priced, high-quality leather equestrian footwear for all ages, sizes and disciplines.

Michaela’s Top Tips for Success at Horse Trials

Michaela says…

” Many competition mistakes can be avoided with planning and forethought:


According to British Eventing (BE), horse trials dressage comprises a set sequence of compulsory movements in an arena. The test is judged by one or more judges who are looking for balance, rhythm and suppleness and most importantly, obedience of the horse and its harmony with the rider.  Each movement is scored out of ten with the total being added up and converted to a penalty score (and percentage). Dressage shows how trainable the horse is and its basic paces in walk, trot and canter.

  • Regardless of whether you are allowed a caller, the test must be firmly committed to memory as it is common for nerves to affect riders on the day, causing a complete blank during your performance.
  • Your initial centre line entry is vital, being the first impression given to the judges. A straight line down the centre line is one of the hardest parts as nearly all horses tend to drift left or right.
  • Transitions must happen exactly at the place required, and can commonly cause the loss of your working outline. A good technique is to think well ahead and prepare your horse for the change of pace to avoid any resistance.


According to BE, the show-jumping phase is one round of jumping with a maximum time allowed and the objective is to jump all the fences clear inside the time. The fences are not as high as top level show-jumping but are quite substantial for horses which are not specialists at show-jumping. Fences knocked down and refusals incur penalties as does exceeding the time allowed. The show jumping shows athleticism, control and accuracy.

  • It is common to see eventers adopt the more forward cross country style of riding when showjumping. Remember that this phase should be ridden with a slightly slower, more collected canter, so keep your position a little more upright.
  • As showjumps are so much closer together and often related to each other with distances and doubles, avoid taking off too far away from the fence, as horses can flatten and knock a pole down.
  • Know your striding between a distance – the aim is to get even strides, with no half strides ruining the rhythm.


The third phase is ‘XC’, where a course of natural obstacles has to be jumped, according to BE. Again, this is inside an optimum time. Being over the time incurs penalties, and being well under it is of no benefit, and unnecessarily tires the horse. XC tests stamina, speed, jumping technique and bravery.

  • You must know your route well, walking the course as many times as you need to. Flags must be negotiated correctly.
  • Know the time required and choose where to save seconds. Ensure you have a good quality eventing watch and know where you should be at various points of time.
  • Many horses will have problems at the water complex – practise over as many different ditches and water obstacles as you can.
  • Fitness is key and tired horses are more likely to make mistakes. Build up to your event, aiming to have the horse at peak fitness on the day.

So good luck everyone- and happy riding”

Michaela rides in the Kentucky Short Jodhpur Boots at home and loves her smart Lancer Long Riding Boots for competition. She often teaches and walks the course country course in the functional country boot; The Holkham available in a country or a riding sole. To find out more about the Taurus Footwear collection, including Michaela’s favourite pairs visit the website at www.taurusfootwear.co.uk.

Taurus Footwear Gear Worn at European Endurance Championships 2014!

Exciting news! Taurus Footwear are sponsoring two young riders; Alice Loten and Brett Corcoran who will be representing Great Britain at the European Championships in Verona on 12th  July 2014.

The boots and gaiters will be worn during the opening and closing ceremonies. Alice and Brett will be wearing Black Pegasus Boots and Black Leather Gaiters.







Look out for our pictures of the riders in their Taurus kit to follow soon!

If you would like to follow the rider’s journey why not keep up with their own blog for all the latest news and information?

To see the range of top quality, equestrian leather footwear available from Taurus Footwear visit the website at: www.taurusfootwear.co.uk 


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