John Winning’s involvement with equestrian sport has been long standing since his daughter Jaime and wife Kerrie lured him into the sport more than 18 years ago. During this time he has worn many hats as an owner, sponsor, event assistant to his wife Kerrie and overall supporter of the sport.
So when Equestrian Australia approached John to take on the position of Chairman of the recently established ‘Owners-Patrons Program’, John was only too happy to help out.
As part of EA’s review of the high performance program and planning for the Rio Olympic cycle, it was clear that not only did our owners need better support for their contribution to the sport but there was also a real need from riders for EA to assist them in keeping squad horses.
To achieve success at the Olympic Games and World Equestrian Games will require horse power and Australia needs to be able to match it with the other countries and ensure horses are not sold to competing nations.
John has seen firsthand through his involvement, the need for Australia to retain its top squad horses and not lose out to other countries.
“I’m approaching the program with an open mind. I aim at getting likeminded supporters to collaborate together to collectively strengthen the sport. I am mindful that I am aligned mainly with show jumping, but I’m focused on committing to all Olympics disciplines.”
“I’m happy to be more involved. My other passion is sailing, and while I wasn’t a patron of their program, I am well aware of how well it worked to support our Australian sailors at the London Olympics.”
The Owners-Patrons Program is an exciting new concept with the full details of the program currently being developed in conjunction with the new Chair. What John will do in his voluntary role is work with EA to not only set up a network of owners who will contribute financially to help retain Australia’s top horses, but also look at other areas of the sport where financial assistance can assist to improve high performance outcomes.
EA Chairman Dr. Warwick Vale said he welcome John to the position and looked forward to working with him.
“We need to attract more investment into keeping our top squad horses in the sport and I am pleased that John has offered to help us out.
“John has great relationships within the sport and broader business networks and working with the team at Equestrian Australia we believe we can build an Owners-Patrons network that will support our Olympic discipline riders,” he said.
More details on the Owners-Patrons Program to be revealed soon.