Sharon Klijn & Phoenix
2021 Ultramox Freedom to Friendship Stallion Challenge – Wild Card Trainer
I am Sharon Klijn, I am based near Whangarei, twenty years old and horses are my passion. I have fulfilled my dream of working with horses each day since I left school in 2018 and after coming back in 2019 from an overseas work experience in the Netherlands started my own business “SKS – Sharon Klijn Sporthorses”, breeding and producing sporthorses.
Over the years there has not been a day gone by without learning and questioning how to be better for my horses. I learned most of my skills from my mother and people I met over the past 7 years, who have inspired me in different ways, who have shaped me into the horsewoman I am today. I know principles of dressage, jumping, driving and liberty training, as well as having a great interest in equine bodywork, able to help horses in pain. Working with and reading the horses are definitely my strongest skills, but helping others in their horse journey as a coach is giving me great pleasure too. All opportunities to produce horses, including untouched and problem horses, have taught me more about how horses actually think and learn, and how the biomechanics of horse and rider is a very important ingredient too. Working with a wild horse is one of the most rewarding experiences so far, finding out all I have learned about horse communication is true and correct, my horse being my biggest teacher and my mirror.
Phoenix is my 14.1hh stallion and we believe he is at least 10 years old, hopefully, have more certainty about this soon. Phoenix symbolises rebirth and eternity and is also representative of hope, magic, renewal and transformation. Feeling this applies to us both. He loves his grass/hay and carrots and might be the exception of all Kaimanawas not wanting to try any other food offered. From the first day, he has been really accepting of the new way of life and has trusted me in many ways. I have been able to trim all 4 feet and Phoenix had been gelded by day 16. Phoenix has been adventuring around the property since day 10, worked happily in the arena and really enjoys all the fuss in the stables too. He shows an amazing attitude towards all I introduce to him for the first time, being able to cover all basic handling, including worming, washing and navigating basic obstacles. I am not far from backing him, but I am not in a rush to start him as I want to have his mouth checked first and also a saddle fit before I am going to put any gear near him. His happiness and health is my number one priority, his kindness a reflection of our bond together.
I would like to thank KHH, Elanco, Equibrew, Boehringer Ingelheim and all the supporters/organisers for this opportunity, to give these stallions a second chance and show they are willing, beautiful horses.