Leslie married Lesley. It’s unbelievably cute. But their accomplishments are more along the lines of intimidating. He (Leslie–bear with me and try to keep on top of the genders) is British. He won the Athens Olympics and took home the team silver in the 2000 Sydney Olympics. He followed this up tidily with the European team gold in 2001, the World team bronze in 2002 and again the European team gold in 2003. Not too shabby. Lesley (she–are you with me?) is Canadian and has completed impressive competitions such as the Fox Hall Cup and Fair Hill International 3-stars in addition to finishing 20th at the Rolex Kentucky 4-star. Plus she’s well rounded with an honours degree from York University in International Relations and Philosophy. Their names match but they are much more than the sum of their parts.
Q. Where are you each from originally?
Leslie: Hereford, England.
Lesley: Toronto, Canada.
Q. How and where did you two meet?
We met originally at a coaching symposium in Canada where Leslie taught with George Morris how to coach students. Lesley was one of the guinea pig riders. Then we later ‘remet’ at Rolex 2005 and the rest is history.
Q. How did you begin riding?
Leslie: On ponies my dad would buy at the market and make my brother and I break so he could resell them for profit.
Lesley: In a riding school outside of Toronto.
Q. Who was your first horse/ pony?
Leslie: My brother and I had lots of rogue ponies that my dad picked up from the auction.
Lesley: An off the track thoroughbred named ‘Chloe’ that I got when I was 16.
Q. How would you describe each other?
Lesley of Leslie: Very relaxed until he’s not…very talented, very dedicated and extremely hardworking.
Leslie or Lesley: Terribly organized and smart, runs our business like Mussolini running the trains, very passionate, big hearted, very willful, very committed.
Q. Where is your business located? What do you like about the locations?
Ocala, Florida and Bluemont, Virginia. The best of both worlds if you are an eventer!
Q. If you weren’t eventing where would you be and what would you be doing?
Lesley: I would be working in Canada for CESIS. That is where I spent 6 years at university for.
Leslie: I have no idea.
Leslie and Lesley at home in Ocala, Fl
Q. Who do you look up to in the eventing world?
Q. Who are your upper-level horses right now?
Leslie: Fleeceworks Mystere du Val and Private Heart are my main two. But I also ride Evening Shade and Quintus 54 at the Advanced level.
Lesley: Timber Spirit and my upcoming super-boys Java and Hugo Fast who just did their first Intermediates.
Q. Who’s your favorite horse?
Leslie: Shear L’Eau.
Above: Leslie and Shear L’Eau
Above: Lesley on Timber Spirit (Timmy) , Rolex 2006
Q. Do you always go to competitions together or do you split them up?
We try and go to them together as much as possible.
Q. What are the challenges for you in eventing?
The biggest challenge is the amount of hours and work we have to put in to run the business. We literally often work seven days a week during the main parts of the seasons. It is very hard to get away from it, even for a day.
photo by Emily Daily
Q. When you’re not immersed in horses what do you do with your time?
NOTHING. It is so seldom that we are not around the horses.
Q. Is it fun to go to the Olympics? Which Olympics have you attended?
Atlanta, Sydney, Athens. Atlanta was no fun however as I didn’t get to ride because of a stone bruise!
Q. Are there challenges to working together?
Of course, but the benefits far outweigh the negatives. We feel very lucky to spend so much time together. Although we are at the barn all day together we are often apart doing our own things. But we are very lucky to be able to watch each other ride all the time.
Below: Books by and with Leslie Law.