Helmet NOT Hunt Cap by Fiona
Thankfully these kind of hunt caps with hard peaks aren't readily available in the UK anymore, but riding in Australia last year I found them in some tack rooms (and still a few in tack yards here and there in UK too).
6 years ago in the UK I had the choice of a jockey skull cap or a hunt hat with a hard peak from a riding school. The skull cap didn't have a silk to go with it, and not wanting to look like an 'egg head' (pure vanity) I chose the jockey hat (velvet style worn in shows).
We were out hacking when my horse bolted into a wood. I was an experienced rider and I managed to stay on until she began to run out of steam. At this point I sat up to take control and BANG! Head first into a tree and knocked unconcious.
I came round in the ambulance and spent a week in hospital with fractured and dislocated fingers (caught in the reins), fractured kneecap, broken nose BUT NO HEAD INJURY! The hat was split clean in two down the middle! I was told this would have been my head otherwise. My nose needed surgery, it was smashed due to the hard peak on the hat landing on it.
Luckily all new hunt hats in the UK have soft peaks, but I would always choose a jockey skull cap from now on. Silk or no silk. Life is worth more than vanity. Please beware older style hats, which may be second hand or passed onto you. NOTHING is worth comprimising your safety, buy it NEW and buy the BEST!
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