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Backing & Starting

An expert in horse breaking, backing and starting, Will has a wealth of experience, knowledge & the ideal set up to ensure your horse’s first experience under saddle is one that sees them off to a flying start.

‘Will has demonstrated his immense skill and patience when breaking in our feral, sharp horses’

Louise Minderman, Renkum Stud.

As a population, we are renowned for our love of all things equestrian, so it’s no wonder why we are always thinking about our next ‘project’ or ‘horse of a lifetime’. So whether you have purchased a blank canvas or bred something quite special, you can feel confident in Will’s ability to quietly start your equine partner.

From an unbroken youngster whose job it is to be a safe happy hacker, to a jumping machine to take you through the levels, or a horse destined for the show ring, we can promise you the up-most care when sending your unbacked horse to Will.

Facilities including light airy stables & a friendly calm atmosphere where horses are offered a natural environment. We are confident your horse will settle within no time at all, even if he or she has never been stabled before. Will offers one to one attention, with an honest feedback approach & is happy to discuss your horse’s progress along the way.

The backing package offers a premium backing program that works from the ground up. Will does not believe in rushing the process, dummies or over facing your horse. Will is always the first person to sit on your horse, there is absolutely no sub standards or outsourcing to second riders. Will’s programme encompasses everything from desensitisation to sole hacking, taking advantage of large open spaces and ‘spooky’ encounters including the benefits of farming on horseback.

(You can read more about it in our FAQ’s ‘What makes Will Hunt Breaking & Training Different – Sixty Sheep’).

Not just a fair weather rider your horse will be sensibly worked 6 days a week through sunshine & showers. Will’s promise to you is that he will work with your horse so that when you are invited for your ‘first ride’ it surpasses all your expectations, you only have to read our testimonials to see what we mean.

Need aftercare support? Or a guided first ride? This is standard. Will encourages all clients to come down for their first ride and he loves hearing from clients after they’ve left, even if it’s to offer guidance support.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I get my horse professionally backed?

Owners have several reasons why they get their horses professionally backed, from professionals who are short on time & need to concentrate on competing, owners wanting to give their horses the best possible start by using an expert to those either unable or not confident enough. Will has been lucky enough to meet many horse/ owner combinations who have successfully gone on to have great partnerships since starting with his backing service.

What type of horses do you back & start?

Any and all. From internationally bred show jumpers to trotters, shires and show ponies. All horses are eligible & welcome.

Can I ride my horse for the first time with you before bringing them home?

Yes. We encourage every owner no matter what service they opt for to come and ride their horse before taking them home. This is an essential part of the training as we help bridge the relationship with you and your newly backed horse. Please take advantage of this opportunity as lessons post service are chargeable. Please visit lessons for more.

Will my horse be able to hack out on its own after being backed with you?

Yes. We have unrivalled facilities at Will Hunt Breaking & Training. When his or her out riding work starts your horse will experience what the world has to offer. We pride ourselves in returning your horse to you as a confident individual.

My horse has been deemed dangerous & unsafe, will you still back them?

Please contact Will directly. If you have made sure all other avenues of their health have been checked, back, teeth, feet etc and no issues can be found then please let Will know the full extent of your horses behaviour. Will has backed lots of horses others have deemed dangerous & unsafe. Will has no issues with giving you an honest answer with regards to your horse.

Will you teach me or guide me on my next steps when my horse leaves your yard?

Yes. This is as important as welcoming you to the yard for your first ride. Will would have spent time individually with you horse which means he is familiar with their ridden and ground behaviour. If there is anything to discuss he will. He will also advise you on how to handle and ride your horse correctly before leaving. He is always at the end of the telephone.

Contact us

Will Hunt I’m 32 and I’ve been riding since I was 4. All my life I admired Friesian horses, and every time I saw one, I would always get so excited, even if I had my own horses in the past. In

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- Jay

Will Hunt In January 2019 I found Rio abandoned in a field with a herd of feral horses down the road from my livery yard. He was in a sorry state as you can see from his pictures, but I could see

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- Rio

Will Hunt We love hearing feedback from our customers, and we couldn't resist sharing Jacqui's story with you. 'I just want to thank WHBT for doing such a fabulous job with Gracie. I gave Will a highly strung Arab teenager with no

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- Gracie

Will Hunt ‘I contacted Will after several people told me how wonderful he was with any type of horse. My young stallion had some cheeky habits and liked to test the boundaries on the ground as well as being quite bitey and

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- Issy King

Will Hunt Elinor Bathwaite “Will came out to me recently to help with loading issues and I cannot recommend him highly enough for anyone who’s struggling! My cob x gelding has been having massive tantrums about getting onto our 3.5t lately, getting

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- Elinor Bathwaite

Will Hunt 'Just wanted to say a huge thank u for helping me with both my horses, original time a few years ago with mounting issues on my sensitive flighty rescue boy, Will took his time and slowly got his confidence back

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- Angie Bradford

Will Hunt 'Well what can I say apart from God bless Will Hunt. Raf came back yesterday from 4 weeks with him. The day before he went I had a lesson and was terrified. When I picked him up yesterday I walked

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- Julie Mckeown

Will Hunt 'I've used Will Hunt now on several occasions. He has done an outstanding job with all ponies we have asked him to break One of the ponies I sent to Will had experienced no handling whatsoever after being purchased feral

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- Clare Fitch

Will Hunt 'Will has demonstrated his immense skill and patience when breaking in our feral, sharp horses, he has had all of our unhandled colts including Renkum Overdrive who won the 4 year old show jumping championship at Hartpury 3 months later.

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- Renkum Stud

Will Hunt ‘I brought Beau a few months ago unseen from a dealer. It very quickly became clear that she wasn’t the “genuine green” horse I brought. She would bronc the second you put your foot in the stirrup and have you

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- Beau

Will Hunt My 15.3hh, 10 year old Irish Sports Horse mare, was very dangerous in traffic. She would rear up, spin around and bolt in the opposite direction when a tractor, motorbike, Lorry or bus came toward us on the roads. If

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- Blondie

Will Hunt ‘I cannot describe how unbelievably happy I am with my mare! I have had her back for around 3 weeks now and I can’t believe the huge improvement that I have seen in her! Ellie was a highly strung 4

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- Ellie

Will Hunt Emily Chapman – 15.2 Ex Race Horse Hi Will, I would just like to say what an amazing job you have done with Max. Before he came to you he was a anxious, very highly strung sort (typical racehorse), to

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- Max

Will Hunt ‘Hi Will I was anxious dropping my young horse off at Will’s yard as I only found him through an ad on FB, I had read testimonials on his website but knew nobody that had taken their horse to him.

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- Sally

Will Hunt Owners: Evie & Pippa Stamp, Guildford Horse: Pete, 14.2 Connemara ‘We sent our horse, Pete, to Will after his behaviour became increasingly problematic following undiagnosed back pain.  He became difficult to handle, planting, threatening to rear whenever we tried to

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- Pete

Will Hunt Maria Thomas – 15.2hh Cob After many years of being around friend’s horses I decided to buy one of my own. I went to see this 5 year old blue eyed cob who I wished to be my forever horse.

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- Maria