Career

Jonelle and Tim Price: New Zealand eventing's power couple

It’s been a whirlwind year for the couple, who welcomed their “surprise” son Otis just 13 months ago, and last week was a “monumental one” in what Tim calls their “crazy gypsy life”.

By Ciara Pratt

Not since Princess Anne and Captain Mark Phillips has there been a power couple this successful in eventing, but Kiwi Jonelle and Tim Price are taking over the mantle!

Fresh off the back of Jonelle becoming the first New Zealand woman to win the Badminton Horse Trials in May, Tim has taken out top prize at the prestigious Burghley Horse Trials.

Chatting to Woman's Day from their UK home in Marlborough, Wiltshire, after what sounds like a raucous night, Tim croaks, "I'm a little bit rough but not too bad.

Anne and Mark were the golden couple of eventing.
Anne and Mark were the golden couple of eventing.

Last night's celebration was not subdued, even if it was a school night. You work hard, but you have to play hard – it's all about a balance in this life!"

It's been a whirlwind year for the couple, who welcomed their "surprise" son Otis just 13 months ago, and last week was a "monumental one" in what Tim calls their "crazy gypsy life".

"Jonelle has had a phenomenal year and that would be enough normally," enthuses Tim. "You could easily rest happy at the end of the season with her wins because that's no mean feat, so to add this to it is pretty cool."

The pride Jonelle, 37, feels was evident in her beaming smile on the day of her husband's win.

"You couldn't have written the script – it really is a fairytale," she gushes. "There was just absolute joy. My mum was over for Badminton and Tim's dad was over for Burghley. It will certainly be a year to remember, for sure."

But it isn't just Jonelle and Tim making moves, with their boy Otis already up and walking around the house, keeping his champion parents on their toes.

Jonelle was there to cheer on Tim at the Burghley event.
Jonelle was there to cheer on Tim at the Burghley event.

"He's a right little character," says Jonelle. "This baby business is new territory for us – every stage, we're not sure what to expect. Neither of us were baby people before he came along, but he shows us along the way and he's definitely got a bit of determination there, which I've no idea where he gets that from!"

The pair say hard work and "a little bit of talent" have led to them achieving results beyond their wildest dreams, which they hope will hold them in good stead as they jet off to the US to represent New Zealand in the World Equestrian Games this month.

Jonelle adds, "It just shows that in the end, if you have the dedication, you can get there. It's nice to have some silly little things to write in the history books, but first and foremost, it's an accumulation of years of knocking on the door. If you keep knocking long enough, the doors start opening."

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