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The Next Generation – Tanimara Macari: “It is definitely tough, but it is worth it”

Tuesday, 15 September 2020
Interview

Photo © Nicole Schultz
Born and raised in Cancun, Tanimara Macari is part of the young generation of equestrians in Mexico. Photo © Nicole Schultz.

 

Text © World of Showjumping

 


 

Following her dream – a professional career in showjumping – has taken Tanimara Macari far from home. Born and raised in Cancun, the 21-year-old is part of the young generation of equestrians in Mexico. World of Showjumping spoke to Macari to learn more about her ongoing journey.

“As most people see my hometown Cancun as a vacation destination, it is easy to assume that there are no horses there,” Macari smiles. “However, there are some. I started riding by coincidence, when I was five. My best friend at the time had a riding lesson and I followed. Immediately, I was in love with the horses and asked my parents if I could start riding,” she recalls.

Growing up in Cancun, the limited opportunities for competing proved to be a challenge. “In my area, I was the only one showing,” Macari explains. “For a bigger show, we had to drive for two or three days. Therefore, I could only compete at those events a few times each year. When I finished high school, I wanted to focus on the sport more professionally, so I moved to Germany and spent a year and a half with Katrin Eckermann and Christian Glanemann. I was working and riding for them, and they really helped me develop.” 

Photo © Nicole Schultz
“Seeing how strong the equestrian culture is in Germany, was really eye opening for me,” Macari tells about her time in Europe with Katrin Eckermann and Christian Glanemann. Photo © Nicole Schultz.

“During my time in Germany I grew, both as a person and as a rider,” Macari continues. “Katrin was a great mentor for me – a top rider who I really look up. I got to ride many different horses, learned how to groom and do everything by myself, competed at many national and international shows and met so many people. I think my time in Germany opened many doors.”

“When she first came to Germany, I never thought that she could change and develop as quickly as she did,” Katrin Eckermann tells about her protégé. “When I see her riding now, it looks so easy. She has the right attitude; she knows that as a rider, you have to work and fight every day. She is a hard worker and really concentrated on what she wants to do.”

“Seeing how strong the equestrian culture is in Germany, was really eye opening for me,” Macari continues. “In Germany, you are showing against top riders every weekend. It is a challenge and it keeps you humble. It also taught me how to be competitive, because you really have to give your best each time you enter the ring.

Right now, Macari lives in Miami – a compromise between her parents wish for a university degree and her own desire to ride professionally. “I am a full-time student at the University of Miami. My major is management and I have a minor in marketing and psychology. I study from Monday to Thursday and spend the rest of the week in Wellington – riding. This is my second year based here.”

Photo © Nicole Schultz
“I think you have to be a hard worker to get them both done, and you need to have good time management skills," Tanimara Macari says about combining studies with competitive showjumping career. Photo © Nicole Schultz.

“It is definitely tough, but it is worth it,” Macari tells about combining studies and a competitive showjumping career. “I think you have to be a hard worker to get them both done, and you need to have good time management skills. At the end of the day, I think it is really rewarding. However, I do need a good team behind me – even though it is a small team. I have my trainer Diego Vivero and his wife Gaby Saa, who is my manager. They help me out with the horses when I am studying. During the weekends I am dedicated to the horses.”  

Finishing 2nd overall in the U25-series in Wellington this winter is what Macari considers her biggest achievement so far. “It was so competitive and it was my first time doing the whole circuit. Also, winning the young rider Grand Prix at Palm Beach Masters in 2019 was a great experience.”

 “There are many really talented U25 riders with such good horses, so it is definitely a tough competition. But at the end of the day, we are all friends and support each other,” Macari says.

Photo © Nicole Schultz.
"While chasing my goals is something that keeps me motivated, I think connecting with your horses is the best part of our sport. The special bond you create with them is really fulfilling," Tanimara Macari says. Photo © Nicole Schultz.

Macari believes that relocating from Mexico has been the only option for her in order to keep developing as a rider. “Moving away from home has given me an opportunity to learn from true professionals. I moved when I was seventeen and in the beginning it was a challenge. When I first moved to Germany, I was on the other side of the world and it was hard, but now I am used to it. I do miss Mexico; I love my country. However, as long as I am focusing on my studies and my horses, the best place for me to be is here in Miami,” she says.  

“My family is my biggest motivation,” Macari continues. “They have supported me from day one. Not only do I owe it to them, but I owe it to myself to reach the top. While chasing my goals is something that keeps me motivated, I think connecting with your horses is the best part of our sport. The special bond you create with them is really fulfilling.”

“I would love to represent my country at the Olympics or World Equestrian Games,” Macari tells about her long-term goals. “Right now, I focus on growing as a rider and trying to get better every day. There are so many things you can improve on a daily basis. When I am finished with my degree at the University of Miami, I would love to move back to Germany with my horses. I think Europe is the heart of our sport.”

 

No reproduction without written permission, copyright © World of Showjumping

 



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