Tim Price: Waterboy

What does being a travelling reserve for the NZ equestrian team entail?

NZL-Tim Price heads into the Stables to get ready for his Dressage: DRESSAGE - Day 2: 2016 GBR-Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials CCI4* (Friday 6 May) CREDIT: Libby Law COPYRIGHT: LIBBY LAW PHOTOGRAPHY
Tim Price is ready for whatever support duties are thrown at him (Image: Libby Law)

NZ’s travelling reserve rider Tim Price is ready for whatever duties may be thrown at him in the next few days. He’s certainly ready to step into competition mode, if that is needed. He’s also happy to be the water boy. Whatever role, he’ll do it with a smile, for sure.

“They know that I am very good at water buckets and I have assumed that role before. I will pick that up and hopefully do that well. Water buckets, and just support.”

Perhaps Tim will have some chauffeuring duties at Rio too! (Image: Libby Law)
Perhaps Tim will have some chauffeuring duties at Rio too! (Image: Libby Law)

Of course, supporting the other riders is a big part of the reserve’s role. You never know what might come up and having someone with experience at the highest level means that the others know they can rely on Tim knowing what is needed.

It’s a tight team, as Tim describes. “We are all really good friends as well as team mates, and so anyone can call on anyone else. It is just being there and being involved and supportive really.”

Being married to one of your team members does come with some extra responsibilities, however. While Tim is there for Clarke, Sir Mark and Jock, it’s Jonelle who will naturally get the most attention and he acknowledges that. “Supporting the team is number-one job but just as important in my head is being there for Jonelle.”

One of Tim's roles as reserve is supporting wife Jonelle
One of Tim’s roles as reserve is supporting wife Jonelle (Image: Jane Thompson)
Walking the course and offering some insight is one of the ways he can help (Image: Libby Law)
Walking the course and offering some insight is one of the ways he can help (Image: Libby Law)

As well as being the water boy on cross-country day, Tim will have input in some other ways. “Walking the course… maybe I can look at things from a different point of view and slightly different angle than the guys running around the course. So that can be something useful I can put on the table.”

Tim is certainly approaching his reserve role in his usual positive and smiling way.

We also had enquiries from some of our readers about what the rooming situation is. Do all the “boys” have separate accommodation from the “girls” and what happens when athletes are married to each other? We asked Tim what the story was and he was happy to share the intimate details.

“Jonelle and I have a room together but they didn’t even ask us if we wanted to be together! What if I didn’t want to? Nah, seriously, we are roomies with two single beds. She hassles me for leaving the floor of the bathroom wet. I could blame the plumbing for the first couple of days, but now I have no excuse. But I think if I want wet floor, I should draw a line in the middle and do what I want on my side. But she doesn’t agree. Nah, we’re sweet. It’s all good.”

Well done Tim, we love your approach. You are The Man!

Perhaps one of Tim's roles is to keep track of all the good luck messages rolling in which are much appreciated. (Image: Jane Thompson)
Perhaps one of Tim’s roles is to keep track of all the good-luck messages rolling in, which are much appreciated. (Image: Jane Thompson)