JULIA PILBEAM AND DEON ENSINK
From an early age Deon and I have been involved with horses and share a passion for thoroughbreds. We both played polo and polocrosse, schooling our own horses, and have represented South Africa in polocrosse in Zimbabwe, New Zealand, Australia and England. I have also competed in dressage, show-jumping and eventing, and ridden work for trainers at Milnerton Training Centre.
Since my first visit to the races at the age of eleven, I have followed racing enthusiastically, developing an interest in breeding thoroughbreds and an understanding of the needs of young horses. Experience riding work has given me a good understanding of the results required from a pre-training programme.
I find working with young horses extremely rewarding, and it gives me a great deal of satisfaction to see them develop confidence, build up their strength and improve their co-ordination. I continue to be involved on a daily basis with every horse’s well-being and programme.
Interaction with owners, trainers and other clients has been especially enjoyable to me as we exchange ideas and knowledge.
Deon organizes supplies, general maintenance, renovations, new buildings and building extensions, as well as sowing and harvesting oats in our oat fields. He also offers invaluable advice and practical suggestions, not to mention, of course, plenty of moral support!
Ricardo has always been fascinated by horses and has been riding since he was a young boy. His introduction to racing started when he gained work riding experience in England. He completed his studies in Equine Stud Management and then worked in reproduction on Thoroughbred studs, including Summerhill Stud. This has given him extensive experience in foaling down and all aspects of broodmare management.
Ricardo has also spent several years backing, pre-training and preparing horses for sales in South Africa and the United States. Ricardo is delighted to be a part of the Soetendal team.
As a highly qualified, experienced equine veterinarian, Jim specialises in thoroughbred breeding but can give advice on all aspects of veterinary work. He comes to Soetendal three times a week during the breeding season and at any other time, whenever he is needed. Jim lives conveniently near our farm, only 10 minutes away. He is a wonderful support, sharing his knowledge and giving us clear explanations, advice and practical recommendations so we value him as an irreplaceable member of the team.
Kevin is a well-known, experienced farrier who has worked for numerous clients in South Africa and England. He applies his extensive knowledge and understanding to produce work that is consistently of the highest standard.