About Me

My name is Sophie Ostler and I am a horsaholic. I have been horse mad for as long as I can remember.

I grew up in a tiny hamlet in Somerset, the sound of hooves on the road outside had me rushing to the window for a glimpse, car journeys were spent gazing out of the window at my imaginary horse jumping the hedges and fences. I set up jumps in the garden and even hung a haynet in the shed, in the hope that a pony might one day appear… some of my fondest memories are of a big retired dun horse called Leveret who lived on the farm near our cottage, he taught me so much.

I started riding lessons when I was 9 yrs old at North Perrott Riding School. I have memories of winter hacks, coming home and putting my frozen fingers on the storage heaters with tears streaming down my face because it was so painful. Rather strangely I don't remember the summer hacks so well!

Sophie Ostler SOequine Sophie Ostler

At weekends I would hack out a friend's pony called Storm, he was in his twenties and every time I rode him, without fail - he would bolt home. It became a regular sight for the villagers, they would see us plod past outward bound at a snail's pace, me encouraging Storm with every step, until finally my legs would ache so much I'd turn him for home... me and Storm the ‘Woolly Mammoth' charging through the village at break-neck speed, it must have been a funny sight.

There was no stopping him, once or twice I landed in a hedge and Storm would arrive home before me, clattering into the yard, with me later following behind, big grin on my face.

Oh, to be young again.

I assumed I would be a professional rider when I grew up, and in 1992 when I was 12 yrs old I decided my ambition was to ride at the Olympics, one of my favourite quotes..

 “If your biggest dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough”                

After leaving school I worked in race yards, and equestrian centres, stud yards, dressage and show jumping yards.. always working for a groom's pittance!

In 1999 I travelled to America, training with the greatest horse whisperers of all time, it changed my life.. and fleeing from hurricane Floyd nearly ENDED my life, but that's another story! Upon returning to the UK it was a bit of an anti climax and I had several dead-end jobs in plastic, cheese and chocolate factories, to name a few! I would tell anyone who cared (or pretended) to listen about my future plans of owning a farm and training horses.

I met my husband Paul in 2001, he had finally had enough of hearing about my plans and told me to "stop dreaming, and start doing" so I quit my job and started helping people with their horses, with enormous success, it was so rewarding.

I had to wait until my twenties before I would finally own my own pony, a yearling filly named Karis. Unfortunately, we had to sell her to pay the mortgage arrears, we had to sell up everything and ended up living in a horsebox, hard times. I lost track of Karis's whereabouts.

In 2004 whilst working as an equine behaviourist, along came my second horse Jason, he was a client's horse, I liked him so much I bought him.

Sunray Supremacy Jason Jason and Sophie

Sunray Supremacy

‘Jason’

Read his story here…

In 2006 my husband and I started a business from our cellar... Clear Plastic Supplies, what started as a pipedream is now more successful than we ever dreamed. As the business grew I spent more and more time in the office and less time helping people with their horses, until the business was demanding all of my time, including weekends. We did eventually move the business out of the cellar into our warehouse in Chesterfield, three times expanding into the neighbouring units.

So, zoom forward to present day, after years of helping others with their horses... followed by years of sitting in an office setting up and running our business, I have decided it is now or never, this is MY time, it's time to concentrate on my riding, my horses.. my ambition. Is it ever too late to take up competitive riding? can I become a successful athlete? a professional rider? achieve sponsorship deals? ...and all of this whilst working full time, and on a budget?

Our first show (albeit only a local in-hand class) was a success - we won! Jason was so relaxed and happy. I now have the competitive "bug", I need more!

In 2012 I realised one of my life's dreams - to have my horses living at home. Now I can look out of a window and watch them grazing… it's absolute bliss. I am yet to own a farm, but this comes a close second, I'm not complaining! We have a busy time ahead, building more stables, a manege and a round-pen… for now we will beg, steal and borrow facilities, it will be slow progress to begin with, but I feel like we've made a start.

I now have three horses, Jason, Minnie, and Ferdy, read all about them here


My Horses

Jason and I have been training with Hannah Esberger, Jason is working really well and I can't wait to get out and about with him.

In 2014 we had more showing success, I was a runner up in the British Horse Feeds sponsorship competition, and I was very honoured to be asked to write regular blogs for Equimins. Read them here.

There have been many obstacles on this journey so far and I'm sure there will be many more to come but if I don't have a go at achieving my ambition I'll wonder... what if...?

So if you fancy having a laugh at my expense, follow us on our journey… wherever it may lead.

At the very least I will have many memories…

Updates!!!

2017 - November, we welcomed my new horse to the herd, Fiona of Westoak, Ferdy’s half sister,  just 7 months old.

2018 - In October my lifelong dream of owning a farm became a reality!  We moved to Ayrshire in Scotland.



Here are some inspirational quotes, featuring my handsome boy Jason :-)

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Storm & Leveret

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sophie@SOequine.co.uk

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My  Horses

Sunray  Supremacy

Ferdy  of  Westoak

Heavenly  Grey

Fiona of Westoak


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