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about my sport

Bio WriteUp

Born in Oslo, Norway, I spent the beginning of my life marvelling at Princess Martha Louise of Norway who was an international show jumper herself. My mother is a diplomat, hence the location of my birth, while my father was a painter, designer and South African springboard diver. Upon returning to South Africa at 4 years old, my father quickly placed me in a riding school where my love for horses and art soon became pivotal to my life.

In 2001, I acquired my first pony and soon followed a horse trailer so we could travel to shows. Although my father was told not to think about competing yet, he was adamant that this is what I needed to excel in the sport, he was right. Having competed from such a young age, on countless ponies, both owned and loaned, I received provincial individual and team colours every year from 2001 to 2012, seeing me well through my pony rider and junior career. I received national school colours and provincial colours in not only show jumping, but also dressage, equitation and the odd show horse and even eventing. Come 2003, I began riding under the instruction of Jonathan Clarke, World Equestrian Games Competitor, who guided me for the next 6 years in show jumping. He made it clear that: "your eventing horse cannot be your jumper" - so jumping I chose wholeheartedly, but still competed in equitation and dressage. With the competitive training from Jonathan, coupled with the equitation and horse care training from Marion Clough, FEI Level 2 Qualified Instructor, my riding excelled in all respects, and my passion for the sport grew ever larger.

With top rankings in pony riders, 2007 saw my first international competition in Mauritius, which I did again in 2008. These tours strengthened my eagerness to one day compete internationally, professionally. 2008 proved very successful for me, where I achieved both 1st and 2nd in the South African Pony Rider Derby on my own pony and on a leased pony. In the same year I came 1st in both individual Nations Cup Jumping competitions in South Africa against Turkey and Germany, as well as 2nd as part of the Children's Nations Cup team. It was at this competition that Ulrich Meyer Zu Bexten invited me to his prestigious German Friendships International Jumping Competition. The next year in 2009, I came 1st in the German Friendships Children's International Jumping Competition (1.10m) against 36 nations on a loaned horse in Herford, Germany. My German team partner and I placed in all 4 classes ending 4th overall. 


Following the success of pony riders, it was time to move onto horses, in the same breath, I moved to Burlington Stables in Johannesburg, South Africa. Here, and since then, I've been coached weekly by FEI Level 3 Instructor, Course Designer & top show jumper Anne-Marie Esslinger.


While balancing high school and at first, 2 ponies and 2 horses, and later only 1 horse, I began riding for Roger Hessen, also a World Equestrian Games Competitor, who gave me the privilege of schooling and competing numerous horses for prospective clients. I schooled horses that had just been backed, horses with difficulty, as well as horses that needed rehab. I also schooled and competed professional horses needing to be sold for whatever reason. Most notably, I rehabilitated and competed his own impressive mare, Phoenix Pantomime, following her foaling duties, as well as Catena, a beautiful Belgium import now successfully competing in the 1.35/1.40ms classes.  

In 2009 I acquired Power Zone, a big, brave thoroughbred from Zimbabwe who would take me to the top of my junior and young rider career. We travelled the country attending all major shows, competing up to 1.40m. In 2010, PZ (as he was affectionately called) and I, came 4th in the 1.30m South African Junior Championships in Port Elizabeth. In 2011 we were on the Gauteng Regional Junior 1.30m Jumping Team to compete at the South African Championships in Shongweni. In 2012, we were top qualifier for the South African Junior Derby (1.30m). In 2014 he and I were the South African Young Rider (u/21) Grand Prix Reserve Champions (1.40m), in Johannesburg, whereafter he was sold. The sale of PZ allowed for my acquisition a young 4 year old warmblood, Kellow Constellation (Contender/Capitol) who has since been self-produced under the professional instruction of Anne-marie. Now in 2018, he is competing in open 1.30m with me, having started as a green youngster in 2015.

With a LLB law degree in its final year, successfully working as a freelance Graphic Designer, and going steady as Marketing Manager of Harrogate Civil Construction, my sights had been drawing nearer to the international sphere in riding. With that, in 2017, I returned to the German Friendships, coached by Tom De Bel of Equestrix (Belgium), and came​ 4th in the Silver Series Championship (1.35m) on a loaned horse, Carina VH Bildeken Z. We also came 12th and 35th out of 73 starters in the preceding classes of the show.​

Now in 2018, having just recently graduated (September 2018), I am exploring opportunities in Europe and the UK to continue to ride, learn, and work in pursuance of my both my passions for the equestrian sport and for graphic design. 

For more about my story, please don't hesitate to send me an email and I will happily answer any questions.



  • 18+ years riding experience in all disciplines.

  • Multiple awards & colours received.

  • Experienced in producing young horses up the grades as well as training & competing professionally.

  • Coached weekly by FEI Level 3 Instructor, Course Designer & top showjumper Anne-Marie Esslinger.


  • LLB Law Degree (University of South Africa)

  • Diploma in Design in Art Ernst de Jong Academy of Fine Art



  • 'The Lucky Moon' is a logo mark I've created that reflects my aspirations as an individual, as well as the minimalist and symbolic style of my design.

  • On the one side, the 'waxing gibbous moon' (3/4 moon) pays homage to my late father Ernst de Jong and his love of the moon. What's in the moon? Hope, dreams, light and loveliness

  • In contrast on the other side is a stylized horseshoe  portraying my passion for horses and equestrian sport. The horseshoe is universally a symbol for good luck, and luck, which for most freelancers is certainly needed sometimes, can only be a good thing!

Testimonials Riding


  • "Tamara rode with me for a few years. She is talented, dedicated and has good ring temperament. She has further produced a number of horses to open level. I would highly recommend her as an asset to any competition yard and any future employer." - Jonathan Clarke, SA World Equestrian Games Competitor.

  • “If you had some money behind you, you’d definitely be at the top.” - Roger Hessen, SA World Equestrian Games Competitor.

  • “One of the best riders in the world.” - Ulrich Meyer Zu Bexten from the German Friendships in Herford Germany 2009.

Recent Achievements

recent and notable achievements

  • 2018 - Now 7 year old Kellow Constellation starts competing in open 1.30m after 3 years of careful production.

  • 2017 - 1st in The 1.20m 2017 Gauteng South Africa Showjumping Challenge & Gauteng Champs, on own horse, Kellow Constellation (6 yo).

  • 2017 - 4th in the German Friendships Silver Series Championship (1.35m) on a loaned horse, Carina VH Bildeken Z courtesy of her coach, Tom De Bel.

  • 2017 - 12th / 73 in the German Friendships Silver Series Two-phase (1.30m) on a loaned horse, Carina VH Bildeken Z courtesy of her coach, Tom De Bel.

  • 2017 - 35th / 72 in the German Friendships Silver Series Speed (1.30m) on a loaned horse, Carina VH Bildeken Z courtesy of her coach, Tom De Bel.

  • 2015 - Acquired Kellow Constellation, a 4 year old warmblood being self-produced at Burlington Stables in Johannesburg, South Africa.

  • 2014 - South African YR (u/21) Grand Prix Reserve Champion (1.40m) on own horse, Power Zone. 

  • 2012 - Top Qualifier for South African Junior 1.30m Derby.

  • 2011 - Gauteng Regional Junior 1.30m Team Member at South African Championships in Shongweni, placing 2nd.

  • 2010 - 4th place at South African Junior 1.30m Championships in Port Elizabeth on own horse, Power Zone.

  • 2009 - 1st, and placed in all 4 classes ending 4th overall in the German Friendships Children's International Jumping Competition (1.10m) against 36 nations on a loaned horse, Wilms.

  • 2008 - 1st in both individual Nations Cup Jumping competitions in South Africa against Turkey and Germany, as well as 2nd as part of the Children's Nations Cup team, on own pony Serwalo Surprise.

  • 2008 - 1st and 2nd in the South African Pony Rider Derby on own pony Serwalo Surprise, and leased pony Brackenwood Ilanga.


Download my Equestrian Curriculum Vitae below:

Tamara de Jong - CV 2019

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