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Riding for the Disabled Queensland mourns the loss of Ned

Ned-7.jpgFrom the first moment Beverley Humphries saw retired racehorse Ned, she could see how kind an eye he had.  

Being a racehorse was not going to be Ned’s long-term career, he had 14 career starts for just one minor placing around the South-East corner of Queensland.

Ned – or Il Mondo as he was called in his early days – was set for a different calling in his life, which was helping people.

When time was called on his racing career at the track, the son of Jade Hunter eventually made his way to the Riding for the Disabled Queensland at Tallebudgera, which provides people with a disability the opportunity to ride and enjoy all the activities connected with horse riding.

Sadly, Ned passed away at age 23 just recently after over a decade at Tallebudgera, where he brought happiness to so many peoples lives.

Humphries, a Committee Member with Riding for the Disabled Queensland, recalled the turn around in Ned’s demeanour.

“When we first got him, he was very unloved and had passed through a number of hands,” Humphries remembers.

“It seemed to be a bit of fate the way we got him. We looked at him a few times and it was his kind eye that won us over. He was not well looked after at that time but we could see his kind eye.

“I have been doing this for 25 years and there is just some horses that look at you and want for you to take them on and just promise to be good – he was one of those.

“He was desperate for some love and we gave it to him.”

Those that have been involved at Tallebudgera over the years are heartbroken at Ned’s passing Humphries said, declaring he had built up a great amount of good will with people.

Ned quickly found his niche at Tallebudgera, becoming their specialist for first rides off the lead and for trotting and cantering.

Humphries explained that he was their Off-The-Track horse who helped educate junior volunteers as well as introducing them to the world of pony club and competition.

“He became our go to horse to start off with off the lead,” she said.

“Ned just excelled, you could take him off the lead and he would walk to you in 50 metres with the kids there riding.

Ned-5.jpg“That gave the kids to get off the lead – that was one of his special areas – especially to trot and canter, you could always rely on him.

“It was not just special children but it was the young volunteers that Ned worked with, he taught a lot of them to ride, as well.

“He had the ability to switch from his special care at RDA to being a horse that could also take kids into pony club competitions.”

A highlight of Ned’s career was when he carried an RDA rider to first place in a division of the RDAQ State Dressage championships and another rider to second place.

While everyone at Tallebudgera is devastated to lose their Ned, Humphries said on the bright side another horse can replace him at their facility and enjoy their life – just as Ned did for so long.

Queensland Off-The-Track is proud to partner with Riding for the Disabled Association of Queensland to support Off-The-Track horses in their post racing life as therapy horses.