By Jed Lanyon
Gladysdale’s Shirley Heights Equestrian Centre had an international visitor recently as Portuguese classical dressage coach and trainer Frederico Schiappa Pietra Saramago hosted clinics for local riders.
Frederico, or ‘Freddy’ as the locals have nicknamed him, has coached and judged in several different countries including the Royal Windsor Horse Show.
Kylie Broxam, whose family own the Shirley Heights Equestrian Centre, said she was happy to work with the internationally renowned trainer.
“It’s so good to see that everyone has taken away something great from it,” she said.
Frederico shared that he and his family have a strong connection to the sport.
“My family have always had horses… It’s been a family tradition for several generations, so it was not very difficult to get involved. It was natural.
“Our main goal is not only to teach people to ride in the correct way, but also with the respect with the horse… I understand perfectly everyone wants to compete and win gold medals but with that comes the respect and love for the horse.
“The equestrian art is the perfect harmony and the complicity between the rider and the horse.”
Kylie said Frederico’s attention to detail has gone a long way for herself and other riders at the equestrian centre.
“It can be something so small but it’s everything when you’re riding a horse,” she said.
Despite spending the week in Gladysdale, Frederico had little time to take in the sights until the weekend as he has been a popular figure among local riders, who were quick to book a private lesson.
“I have enjoyed the people, they have been amazing. But she (Kylie) is saving the last two days to show me the area.”
Frederico spent time in Portugal and Spain earlier in the year teaching Kylie, who he described as one of her best students.
Riders who wish to get involved with Shirley Heights Equestrian Centre can visit https://www.shirleyheights.com.au/.