Born in Wales but currently residing in Australia, Sally Dalby has recently decided to bring her love of Welsh ponies to the local area.
Soon after travelling here on a working visa, Ms Dalby fell in love with Narrabri and our town’s vibrant equine industry.
She started work for Keiley Bell at Bellgarra Ponies, before deciding to stay in the area on a more long-term basis.
That’s when she decided to start breeding her own Welsh ponies, making her only the second producer of this breed in the area, next to Ms Bell.
Ms Dalby quit her job as a local bar manager, to commit to breeding full-time.
“I just have more time to dedicate to the horses this way, but it wouldn’t be possible without the help of my partner, Hayden Murray-Smith,” she explained.
Now, Ms Dalby is well on her way to fulfilling her dream of running a Welsh ponies stud in Australia.
“I grew up around horses, and have been involved in riding and showing them since I was just three-years-old,” she explained.
“But I’ve left my 40-year-old family stud behind in Wales, as well as my own stud that I started at 16-years-old, to live here with my partner.”
Although she has experience from producing her own Welsh ponies back home, this will be Ms Dalby’s first year breeding the horse in Australia.
She’s since purchased a foal, two mares, and a stallion.
“I’d had my eye on this stallion for a while, so I leaped when the opportunity came along to buy him,” Ms Dalby explained.
“And his brother is actually living at my family stud back home, so it’s a small world!”
Ms Dalby is already seeing promise in her ponies, winning supreme Welsh foal in Queensland just recently.
She is expecting her first batch of foals from her current ponies by August or September this year, and hopes to sell them to interested locals.
“I’m very curious to see how the offspring will perform, because I’ve done my research into the pedigree of the horses and the history of the bloodline,” she said.
“I think combining my stallion with Australian mares will produce some good stock.”
Ideal for smaller riders, and suited for both beginners and those with more experience, Ms Dalby hopes to fill a local niche with her new stud.
“They’re only quite small, but Welsh ponies will try their hoof at almost anything, from dressage to led showing,” she said.
Ms Welsh says she’s had quite a bit of success with her four Welsh ponies, competing across Australia, and is particularly excited to show off her horses at the upcoming Narrabri Show.
“It’ll be really good to bring my two girls and stallion out to compete in the local area.”