Horse & Groom Equine Jobs is the brainchild of Mary Petersen; show jumping, hunting, breeding and all-round horse lover.

The idea to create an independent recruitment website that connects employers and jobseekers in the equestrian world came in 2012, when Mary tried to find a groom for herself. After a few weeks of searching the internet and scouring directories, she soon realised there was a real need for such a service.

From her 75 hectare Central Hawke’s Bay farm overlooking the spectacular Ruahine Ranges she shares with husband Steve, Mary connects people from all over the globe in a variety of equestrian roles including grooms, riders and coaches, bringing them to work in New Zealand and other parts of the world.

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Mary has always ridden and her passion for horses began long before she could walk.

As a child, growing up in rural Taranaki on New Zealand’s west coast gave Mary the opportunity to ride every day. Hunting and show jumping were two favourite pastimes, as was her weekly outing to the local pony club. For Mary, horses became a lifelong love; a love inherited from her family who were keen horse enthusiasts.

In the early 1980s, Mary and Steve moved to Central Hawke’s Bay, settling on a large farm between Waipawa and Waipukurau. Initially sheep and beef farmers, the couple now focus time and energy on their horses and “casually” farm the land. The three Petersen children all rode, hunted and show jumped competitively into early adulthood and their son, Bruce, continues to hunt with the Hawkes Bay Hunt.

The farm boasts a purpose-built arena set beside the boundary stream. The arena is utilised by international show jumper/hunter champion Jen Hamilton, who holds clinics there twice a year and recently Jock Paget, Kiwi International 4* Eventer held a successful clinic and looks forward to returning in the spring.