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1 - What is the single greatest change you have witnessed in the equestrian world during your life time?
2 - Do you ride?
3 - Do you own a horse?
No (would love to).
4 - Who is your favourite horse in history?
Pegasus of ancient Greek mythos.
5 - Who do you think was the most influential equestrian human in history and why?
I actually don’t know.
6 - What was your greatest equestrian influence from books or cinema when you were young?
Seeing horseback riding in Arizona as a child and cowboy movies to be honest.
7 - What equestrian book would you recommend today and why?
8 - How did you initially become interested in your specific equestrian specialty?
Travels to Poland, where famous paintings mesmerized me.
9 - What prompted you to enter that field?
10 - Did someone encourage your decision or inspire you?
A university faculty member listened to my ideas and pointed out that cavalry is unusual these days. "You should write about that as you seem to be enthralled by it."
11 - When did you begin your research, investigation, work?
When I was in my early teens (late 1980’s), I began to explore cavalry history of Poland.
12 - What do you think is your most important discovery, achievement or insight regarding your equestrian work?
That cavalry is still a viable and tactically effective means of transportation even today. Case in point, Afghanistan Fall 2001.
13 - What modern technology, techniques and media have you found most helpful?
The internet (yes, Google.com) has helped me tremendously increase my knowledge of equestrian breeds, training, feed, and yet the information is shallow and underdeveloped for what it could be.
14 - What part of your work do you find most fulfilling?
Honoring the horses. Writing of their exploits with their riders. Personal tactile contact with horses.
15 - What’s been your biggest disappointment in your work?
Lack of time and financial backing to pursue even more research.
16 - How do you explain the gulf between academic equestrian investigation and the average horse owner?
Average horse owners may see this as a hobby, with little need to realize that a horse is so very much more than people think of them. They are NOT pets.
17 - What equestrian subjects are in need of more research and investigation?
The history of horses, their psychology, their intelligence.
18 - Which part of the equestrian world would you like to see reformed and why?
Racing and sporting use of horses. They are “used up” at far too young an age considering how long they live and the damage it imparts upon these beautiful beasts.
19 - How do you traditionally deliver your findings or message and how would you ideally like to do so?
I traditionally deliver my findings in verbal lecture form. I actually wish to do more of that as I am not privileged to be teaching officially now. I would most like to have the time to record horses riding and see reenactments of military horsemanship.
20 - What intellectual, technical or ethical advances would you like to see in the horse world?
Proper treatment of sporting and work horses, absolutely! Encouraging a re-connection with our own past history with such devoted and wonderful creatures which helped us build the very world we have today. I wish to see more video online of horses in action. Photographs and paintings are too static.
21 - Do you foresee any difficulties for the horse world in the immediate future?
Bad economic times reduce the appeal of such a high cost sport/activity. Decreasing public knowledge about horses.
22 - What is the greatest challenge facing the horse world in the long term?
Greatest challenge? Perhaps keeping people riding and encouraging the passion for horse riding. Modern life encourages a too sedentary lifestyle.
23 - What books, magazines, websites, etc. can people read and review to learn more about your work?
Unknown as yet, I may consider adding a web presence to my work.
24 - Any final thoughts?
Yes, indeed. I am not an expert rider, have only been riding for less than a decade. I took it up and fell in love with it. Now I just got to share this passion with a pair of Chinese exchange students. They are novices, in fact never having been on a horse before. Both fell immediately in love with it due to the expert attention of my great friend and horse instructor, Hillary Carlson. This patient approach is critical to getting more people to fall in love with horses. That breeds a future for equine activities. I am glad I could share that with these fine students, one of whom has now expressed an ongoing interest in continuing to ride back home in China.
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