By Kelly Wilson
For the Love of Horses tells the true story of the Wilson sisters: Vikki, Amanda and Kelly from their humble beginnings at pony club on cheap second chance ponies they trained themselves to show jumping triumphs to their amazing journey with the wild Kaimanawa horses.
Written by Kelly it documents the highs and lows of growing up poor with horses meaning they often bought horses that others had labeled as problem horses or difficult and learning how ride and train with the horses welfare and happiness at the forefront.
The Wilsons are best known (at least to me who doesn’t follow show jumping that closely) for their work with New Zealand’s wild Kaimanawa horses which was first documented through a documentary made by Amanda called Wind Eaters and the reality show Keeping up with the Kaimanawas.
The Kaimanawas are subjected to a yearly muster to control the population and reduce the environmental impact and due to the reputation of being difficult to domesticate most are culled. Introduced to their plight rafter training a Kaimanawa pony into a successful jumper the Wilson sisters were inspired to rescue a number of the horses and train them while Amanda filmed their journey to domestication. Following their success they were inspired to help found the Kaimanawa Stallion Challenge which was filmed for Keeping up with the Kaimanawas and lead to a huge rise in the number of horses that were saved.
This book is so full of heart and the Wilsons are the best kind of horse people with their genuine love of horses showing through in all aspects of their lives. I admire those who start from the bottom and get to the top with hard work and dedication and use their influence and position to rise awareness to a truly great cause.
Kelly Wilson has also written another novel documenting her and her sisters in America working with wild Mustangs called Mustang Ride which is definitely next on my reading list.
For more information on the Wilsons and the Kaimanawas check out: