The Riding Holiday Show on 12 December will be full to the brim with talented instructors and riding guides from around the world. Here, we have an article by Georges Malleroni, the inspirational technical director at Alcainça in Portugal.
1. How long has Alcainça been taking riding holiday guests? How did it all begin?
I started to work with António Duarte, owner of the Alcainça Classical Dressage training barn in 1982. In 1985 we began to work with Silva Freich, owner of Equitours in Switzerland. A dressage rider herself, she was looking for good well-trained Lusitano horses to offer riding holidays to her riders. Since then we have been hosting more riders every year from all over the world who want to discover our wonderful Lusitano schoolmasters.
2. What has been your biggest achievement to date?
To have trained Portuguese riders who have become excellent professionals (a rider from the Portuguese School of Equestrian Art and World Champions in working equitation). Also to have trained many horses to High School in order to use them in our program. Some of these school masters once sold, have had honorable performances in competitions worldwide.
3. How did you get in to riding? Was there someone who inspired you?
It was when I saw the black and white pictures of Master Nuno Oliveira in his book ‘Reflection sur l’art equestre’ that I thought to myself, “this is it; this is where I need to go!”. And when I finally started working with Master Nuno Oliveira in Portugal, it was a dream come true.
4. If you hadn’t become involved in teaching classical dressage, what was your Plan B?
To become a airplane pilot.
5. People coming on a riding holiday often think you have the ideal job – what do you love about it? And what are the downsides?
My job is a joy everyday of my life. Downsides: one life is not enough.
6. What is the name of your favourite horse?
I cannot name one favourite horse, but many of them have been my best friends during our life together.
7. What can you not live without (when teaching, riding or just generally)?
I cannot live without riding and I cannot teach without riding.
8. What has been your most memorable ride, lesson or time at Alcainça ?
Often the perfect harmony with the horses I have been training during some of the lessons is as rewarding as riding; the joy of my students when succeeding to make them achieve that harmony during the lesson.
9. How do you relax after a day teaching guests?
Being with my family, reading, being aware of world events and watching the soccer games of my favourite team, Sporting Club of Lisbon.
10. What advice would you give a 21 year old who wants to train for your job?
Do you really love it? Because it has to become your number one priority in life as Master Nuno Oliveira.
11. Where do you like to go on holiday?
On the Atlantic Coast.
Thank you Georges for another interesting article. Olwen and the team look forward to seeing you in a few weeks’ time.
You can meet Georges from Alcainça at the Riding Holiday Show in London on 12 December 2015. Space at the venue is limited so you must obtain a ticket in advance. The event takes place at the Royal Overseas League in SW1 just off Piccadilly from 10 am to 6 pm.
38 different riding destinations will be represented at the Riding Holiday Show. All part of the In The Saddle portfolio of worldwide riding holidays.