Six year Briar Herries, a member of the Gisborne Dressage Group, is a wonderful #GameChanger showing us all that you’re never too young to be a #GameChanger.

Henrike Puketapu told us about this remarkable act of compassion and empathy by Briar.

At our recent Premiere League Dressage Championship show, a young girl competed in the walk/trot tests. Unbeknown to her mother they used a bit that while legal (and recommended) for showing, it was not a legal bit for dressage. Rules are rules, which meant the girl was unable to claim a placing.

Understandably, the girl was very upset. Young six year old Briar, however, showed compassion, empathy and true sportsmanship by giving the girl her very own red ribbon that she had won that weekend.

Good on you Briar, a mistake made by an adult should not discourage a young rider from competing in our sport!

Briar is a perfect example of what we mean when we talk about a #GameChanger: someone who lives the values which our Change the Rein campaign is all about. Thank you Briar, you’re a leading light! And thank you Henrike for sharing this heart-warming story with us.

#GameChangers is about encouraging people to tell us about acts of kindness or helpfulness by ESNZ members that made a difference to someone’s day.  So, please keep your eyes and ears open when you’re out and about and nominate someone you witness doing something kind, supportive, helpful for someone (or a horse) that demonstrates the sort of inclusive, supportive, safe and friendly culture we’re working towards with Change the Rein.  We will make sure people are aware of what great people we have in our sport.

If you want to nominate an ESNZ #GameChanger, this is what you do:

Please email to nzef@nzequestrian.org,nz the following information (#GameChangers in the subject line):

  • Person nominating the #GameChanger – your name, contact details (email & phone number)
  • Who is the ESNZ member being nominated as a #GameChanger (name, discipline, area group/club and role eg official, rider, volunteer, parent)
  • Photo of the #GameChanger person (not necessarily in the act, so to speak)
  • What was the #GameChanger behaviour witnessed and the outcome (this doesn’t need to be heroic – just a kind, considerate, helpful, supportive, inclusive, welcoming, friendly act)