Ringfort Tinkaturk Wins Side Saddle Championship at Devon in New Career

Ringfort Tinkaturk and Sue Sisco at the Devon Horse Show. Photo by Hoof Print Images, courtesy of Barbara Wanamaker.

Ringfort Tinkaturk and Sue Sisco. Photo by Hoof Print Images.

It’s the year of the side saddle here on EN. We have already met an accomplished and intrepid side saddle foxhunter in Lady Martha Sitwell, cheered for side saddle eventers and The Flying Irishwoman Susan Oakes in point-to-point races, watched Boyd Martin try his hand at riding aside, and now we have an event horse that’s been crowned a side saddle champion.

Just a few short months after his sale and career change, Lizzie Snow’s former two-star mount Ringfort Tinkaturk, or “Jacob” as he is known around the barn, took home the Ladies Side Saddle Championship at the Devon Horse Show for his new owner Barbara (Babbie) Wanamaker and rider/trainer Sue Sisco.

Earlier this spring, Lizzie sent Jacob to be sold through Pippa Moon in Aiken. Though Jacob progressed quickly to the two-star level and served as Lizzie’s CH-Y2* mount at the 2013 North American Junior & Young Rider Championships, she felt he didn’t have the fitness potential to be a three- or four-star horse.

“I wanted him to find something that he enjoyed doing and that was easy for him,” Lizzie said. “He is a very talented horse that doesn’t get upset by anything. He always seemed like he would be great in the hunter or equitation ring.”

Lizzie Snow and Ringfort Tinkaturk at the 2014 Dutta Corp Fair Hill International. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Lizzie Snow and Ringfort Tinkaturk at the 2014 Dutta Corp Fair Hill International. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Pippa was able to find the perfect home for Jacob with Babbie, who was initially attracted to Jacob’s way of going and style of jumping. She also loved his kind temperament and great ground manners.

“After I rode him, it was clear that he had a wonderful quiet temperament, was easy to ride and had the scope that I was looking for in a horse,” Babbie said.

Jacob wasn’t originally destined for side saddle riding — Babbie’s interests lie mainly in showing in hunters astride, though she also enjoys showing side saddle — but he happened to show an affinity for the discipline under trainer Sue Sisco of Sunfield Inc.

After only a short time to practice the new discipline, Jacob and Sue clinched the Side Saddle Championship title at the Devon Horse Show by winning both the Ladies Side Saddle Over Fences and Under Saddle classes, as well as taking fourth place in the Hunter Hack.

Lizzie Snow and Ringfort Tinkaturk at Southern Pines in 2013. Photo by Crow's Toes Photography.

Lizzie Snow and Ringfort Tinkaturk at Southern Pines in 2013. Photo by Crow’s Toes Photography.

“I think Lizzie’s style and training along with his talent and disposition really paved the way for an easy transition to side saddle and showing,” Babbie said. “The lead changes were probably the biggest challenge. It’s a little more tricky to work on those when you only have one leg to use!”

Future plans for Jacob include showing in amateur hunter divisions and hunter derbies with Babbie, as well as simply having fun and enjoying their time together. 

“He will spend the bulk of his time trail riding at home, doing some paper chases and being one of my four-legged family members,” Babbie said.

Lizzie is thrilled to see her former partner find success with his new family, no matter what tack he wears: “I didn’t know he would end up being in the ring as a side saddle horse, but how cool is that? He looks very happy, and I know he has the perfect home.”