Abbie Murphy’s ‘Royal’ Background (Strapper Profile)

NSW Veterinarian, Meg Brownlow, contacted Racing NSW requesting exposure of many of the hard-working strappers in this State

“I am a veterinarian working for Racing NSW. From time to time in my work duties I am in a position to take some great raceday shots, especially of strappers. I think they are a very unappreciated and yet most important in this industry. I would love to pen an article each month as I think this might be of considerable public interest and help promote how these horses are loved and cared for by the racing community.”

Meg’s first subject is ABBIE MURPHY who was originally from the UK and now at Peter & Paul Snowden’s stable.

“From the age of three my Mum told me I was given a rocking horse for Christmas. My reply to Mum on Christmas Day was ‘Santa has made a terrible mistake, I need a real horse’. I guess from that day onwards, I’ve always loved horses.

“I was luckily enough to be surrounded by horses from a young age, always at the family farm riding the ponies bareback in the paddocks. At seven I began to compete most weekends in Mounted Games.

“I was selected to ride for my country when I was just 14 at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in Wales. I won the competition and was awarded a medal and cup by the Queen and Prince Phillip. I used to exercise horses on the mountains in Wales at the age of 15 and did most of the gallops there; every hour of the day I’d want nothing more than to be around horses.

“I took a full-time job in an office for six years and during this completed an apprenticeship in business administration. I also did a 12-month teaching degree, as well as volunteer in my spare time with disabled adults and young youth offenders.

“Although still involved with horses, buying, selling and breaking in, I knew in my heart there was an empty space, so off I went and booked a one-way flight to Australia – and the rest is history!

“I’ve been in Australia for just over three years and worked alongside Greg Bennett in Scone. He’s a champion man and I learnt so much from his horsemanship skills. I also worked for Gai Waterhouse in Sydney as a junior foreman and track rider, and currently I’m with Snowden Racing and I love it here.

“I am very thankful to be a part of this amazing family-like team and such talented beautiful horses.”

*First appeared in Racing NSW Magazine (December 2016 issue)