Meet Matt Brown, member of Team Sterling Essentials, and top level eventing rider and mentor!
Discipline: International 4* and 5* Three Day Eventing
Home Base: East West Training Stables - Chadds Ford, PA and Aiken, SC
When did you start riding, and was it love at first sight?
Horse was my first word. I always knew horses would be my path.
What’s your motto or philosophy for how you work with your horses?
A horse trainer trains horses, a horseman trains himself. Be a horseman.
Which horse in the barn do you think has the most quirky personality or goofy habits?
I wish I could pick just one. Somehow all of our horses seem to have huge personalities; they are all very much themselves and aren’t afraid to show it. We like to spend time learning about what makes each horse tick and really cater our program to their individual needs. We have Super Socks, who may seem kind of quiet or dull when you pass by him in his stall, but he’s got quite a big personality once you get to know him. He LOVES to be scratched, and will position you exactly to the itchy spots. He goes out in the field with my wife’s dressage horse, Galaxy, who has to wear a muzzle (he’s sensitive about his weight) and so sulks in the shelter a lot. Flaxen will be out grazing his heart away but when the bugs get bad he runs in to the shelter, body slams Galaxy and then itches his whole body on him. Thankfully Galaxy is a tolerant sort so just sort of mutters under his breath but indulges Flaxen. Flaxen also grunts all the time. He grunts in his flying changes, he grunts over every fence he jumps, he jumps when he’s being naughty and bolting 😜.
What do you consider your greatest achievement so far? And what do you see coming next on the horizon?
I think my greatest achievement so far is the relationships I’ve been lucky enough to build through riding and training horses. I’ve had some really incredible students over the years, and consider many of them family at this point. It’s really amazing how the horse world can bring people together. It’s such an intense way to make a living. It really is a lifestyle more than a job, so finding people within the horse world that share your passion in some way is incredible, and I’m just really lucky to have had some wonderful people in my life that I’ve met through the horses.
In terms of what’s next on the horizon, my wife and I have been working on buying a property in PA, so a lot of our energy has been going towards getting that going and finalized. It’s something that I kind of never dreamed we would be able to do, and it’s only through the incredible support of some friends and family that we’ve been able to be creative and work something out, so I’m really excited to have that nearing completion this fall and winter. It’s meant selling some horses that would otherwise like to keep, but I think it’s worth it. I’m looking forward to getting settled in to our new place and refocusing on some of the exciting young horses I’ve got coming up now, and of course, Super Socks is coming back to competing so I’d love to get overseas again with him next year some time.
Riding and training professionally is such an action packed schedule, but do you have a bucket list vacation that you would love to take if you had the chance?
I went on a trek to Nepal out of school, and I promised myself I would go back, so that would be on my list of places I need to visit again before too long.
Do you have any other hobbies?
I am a student of Kenpo Karate and really enjoy training in the martial arts in my down time.
What is your favorite Sterling Essentials fragrance?
Lavender for sure!
Keep up with all of Matt’s latest happenings by following at: http://www.eastwesttrainingstables.net/
Matt Brown is sponsored by Sterling Essentials.