The Art Hotel Chasers came together as a combination of the Teme Valley Tigers and the Odds and Sods in 2009. Happily, this coincided with Roel Rol looking for a team to sponsor - Roel runs the Art Hotel chain, based in Amsterdam.
Sarah Myhill is the main team organiser and achieved the impressive feat of putting together two teams for every competition in the 2011/12 season – an Open team, the Art Hotel Chasers and an Intermediate team, the Art Hotel Racers.
The Open team invariably has a hard core of Heather Moodie, Yvonne Goss and Sarah Myhill, who will be joined in the spring by Emma Beresford riding Roel Rol's horse Larry. Lissy Seidel, who made a brilliant contribution The Demon - who was always competed in a bitless bridle and 'barefoot' - has decided to hang up her team chasing boots!
Sarah, a doctor by profession, is the chairman of the Teme Valley hunt, while Heather runs a livery yard in Oxfordshire and has appeared as a 'Thruster of the Week' in Horse and Hound. Yvonne Goss is a former member of the legendary Forge Flyers and she and her great horse Perry won all of the leading hunt rides. Yvonne also coaches Cropthorne and Evesham Vale Riding Club, and is training a mini team of eight and nine year olds for bogey time classes.
Sarah Myhill says: "We have been blessed with superstar horses."
Lead horse is the former eventer Dingbat who featured recently in Horse and Hound's First and Last series, and is well known for his eccentric jumping style and his fury if anyone goes past him! He lives out year round and is devoted to Sarah's mare Lousa.
Second horse is Yvonne Goss's Haxton, an ex-racehorse who broke down badly and was expected to be little more than a hack when he recovered. Not a natural lead horse, he is now happy to stand in if needed, but loves to run in the number two slot in the team. A very sound and reliable team horse who loves his job, Haxton has won the RoR prize for the last two years at the national championships for the highest placed ex-racehorse. Yvonne says: "He will still drop me for fun when he wants! In his spare time he nannies a group of 8/10yr old children hunting, hacking and on fun rides".
Third horse is Heather Moodie's 17hh grey gelding Kowhai. Sarah comments: "He would never think to stop at any fence, he is always working out how best to jump it. I don't think he has ever come down in any competition though any fault of his own." The big jumping grey, who loves the top of the ground, often makes up amazing amounts of space in the air, and can turn from nowhere to clear a fence. At the Cotswold in 2012, Haxton and Kowhai's incredible 'adjustability' saved the day when Dingbat missed at the drop hedge directly in front of them.
Fourth horse is now Larry – purchased for the team by Roel, currently being hunted by Sarah, but will be chased by Emma Beresford. Emma's first ever ride on Larry was in the Cotswold Intermediate which was won by the Racers, and then she brilliantly completed the Essex and Suffolk open on him. "They will be a force to be reckoned with," says Sarah.