Madamchino | A talented Eventing mare with big plans.

Madamchino, by Maschino and out of Danewin mare Madam Jewel, is showing the world her winning heritage on the Eventing circuit. Bred and raced by the Yuill family at Limerick Park, this 2015 mare quickly showed her heart wasn’t in racing with just four starts for no placings. Graham Yuill retired her in June 2019 and Tessa Sharman was contacted to see if she wanted to start the mare in her second career.

Tessa had been in contact with the Yuill’s and had asked them to keep an eye out for any retired horses that came through their stables.

“They (the Yuill’s) are good old school horse people who know what is needed for a horse to be a top eventer, so you know if Graham and Belinda think the horse is worth it, then you should definitely give it a go.” Tessa says.

Kyra Yuill, Jockey and Graham’s daughter remembers the mare fondly as a pleasure to have around the stable. Kyra, having previously Evented admired Madamchino’s movement and said that if she wasn’t so busy with her race riding she would have loved to keep Madamchino for herself. As experience horsemen, the Yuill’s recognised Madamchino’s quality and when she showed that her heart wasn’t in racing, they had to find her an exceptional home.

The Yuill’s wanted to find Madamchino, affectionately known as Rita, a special home where she could excel. After talking to Graham Tessa considered buying the mare sight unseen but made the trip down to Bunbury with her husband, Gerry. Kyra Yuill rode the mare first and her impressive movement was soon apparent. After seeing her trot Tessa remembers commenting to her husband that she was already in love with her. Tessa had her first ride on Rita, and although she was green, she had been schooled beautifully. The deal was sealed and Rita was loaded up and on her way back to Tessa’s. There is some debate as to who owns Rita between Tessa and Gerry, with Gerry claiming ownership as he handed over the money!

The mare’s great start to her ridden career has set her on a great path.

“The Yuill’s give their horses such an amazing start to life, they break them in properly so the horses have good mouths, they understand what go and stop means and how to walk trot and canter in some sort of outline. It makes the re-training and educating process easy from the beginning.” Tessa says.

As does usually go with big talent, Rita has a big attitude and is no push over. Tessa and Rita have their moments, but the mare is brave and athletic so finds things easy. Tessa says this has made training her a lot easier.

Bucking the Eventer stereotype Dressage has always been Rita’s strong point. Tessa says she is the most talented horse she has ridden on the flat.

Not to discount her jumping ability, which has come a long way in a such a short space of time. Rita is super brave, but not always the most careful so they are working on her technique. Snapping up those long legs can sometimes be a big ask!

Rita’s competition career started less than twelve months ago, in the middle of 2020. Since then Rita and Tessa have had six Eventing starts, which include winning the Eva95 Off the Track Class at Capel CCN and WAYER CCN. At Capel CCN the pair earned an incredibly low 19.7 penalties for Dressage, leading the class by 10 points and finishing on 23.7 to win. Tessa says Rita became a cross country machine at WAYER CCN during which they were double clear (no time or jump penalties).

“It’s those moments when you can feel you are sat on a superstar, which is a real privilege and a huge responsibility. Making sure you do all the right things by the horse so they can realise their potential is always the goal.” Tessa says.

Horses are great at keeping their riders and handlers humble, and Rita is no different. One of Tessa’s favourite memories of Rita is when she did just that, brought her back down to earth. The pair were warming up for Dressage at Gidgegannup CCN, Rita’s first event, and Tessa was feeling smug about sitting on her amazing horse. Rita took exception to a pony warming up five metres away and bucked repeatedly until Tessa came off before careering around the dressage arenas, disrupting the tests being ridden. Once Rita had warmed herself up, she let herself be caught and performed an amazing test to eventually placing second in the Eva80 Off the Track class, a close 1.3 penalties behind the winner.

Both sweet and spicy, Rita has claimed Tessa and Gerry has “her people”. Tessa says she loves her cuddles, and is always curious about what’s going on around her. She will even let Tessa cuddle her as she lies down in the stables for a sleep.

“It’s strange to have a mare that is like that but it really is nice.” Tessa says.

Tessa has big plans for this talented mare, believing she has what it takes to become a top-level Eventer. The pair are upgrading to 1* at Murray CCN this weekend. Long-term plans include interstate travel, Tessa hopes to make it to the 2022 Melbourne Three-Day Event, and to one day make it around the 5* course at Adelaide International Three Day Event. But for now Tessa will continue with Rita’s training, making sure the mare only is asked to handle what she can cope with. Rita is rising six, and Tessa says it’s important to read where the horses are at and what they are telling you they need.

“I will be forever grateful for the Yuill’s for putting Rita and I together. She came to me at a time when I really needed a boost with my horses, and she just keeps making me smile.” Tessa says.

The Yuill’s keep up to date on Rita’s achievements in her new career.

“As a stable, we love to see them succeed once they’ve finished racing.” Kyra says.

Madamchino is quickly earning a status as a crowd favourite, and we’re sure there’s many looking forward to watching her succeed.

Madamchino has her OTTWA Passport! Did you know that to qualify for OTTWA Sponsored classes and prizing your horse needs to have their OTTWA Passport? Learn more by following the link below.

  • Madamchino and Tessa Sharman

  • Madamchino