How it all began….
In 1995 Trevor, Marleen, and Tony Gregory struggled to find a canvas cover to fit their team of show jumpers and hunters. They found that most gave terrible shoulder rubs and didn’t fit all the different types of breeds they had. To fix their dilemma, they designed the Gregory Equine Cover.
Time was spent fitting, molding, and shaping the design to make sure the fit was just right, the darts were in the right place, and that this cover would fit all breeds and not give those unsightly shoulder rubs.
The two-piece shoulder gusset and five-hole front shape came into play and with a few prototypes made and tested, and the help of some Matamata racehorse trainers and showjumpers, the cover design was finalized.
Export began and covers were being shipped to Japan, USA, UK, Australia, and beyond.
Large orders of Gregory Equine Extra Drop Wool-lined rugs were shipped to the UK and the USA. Japan loved the canvas covers for their racehorses and Dubai couldn’t get enough of them for their endurance horses.
For six years the Gregory’s worked endlessly making covers to keep up with demand.
In 2001 they decided their time was up and sold Gregory Equine to Barbara Carter. Barbara kept things going and later sold Gregory Equine to racehorse trainer John Sargent.
During John’s ownership, which spanned for just over 13 years, Gregory Equine expanded into canvas manufacturing and made a new line of canvas and race-wear products including the popular Canvas Hay Bag, PVC Saddle Pad, PVC Gear Bags, and Race Day Presentation Rugs. The Canvas Fly Sheet was also developed and is a best-seller in hotter climate countries. With John’s large involvement in the racing industry in New Zealand and Australia, the business took off and large orders were flying out the door.
In 2015, with John relocating from Matamata to Sydney, he decided to sell Gregory Equine.
Proud new owners Eion and Megan Kemp took over in December 2015 and have been busy since. As well as the high-quality canvas production, they have introduced a well-stocked retail shop to the mix, full of well-known brands.
With a talented, knowledgeable team behind Eion and Megan, boasting more than 77 years of experience between them in the industry, they strive to deliver the best products and services to you.
Why are our Covers so good?
Gregory’s covers have been in use in New Zealand for over two decades.
Part of our continued success is that the Canvas we choose to use, Regentex. JT Inglis was renowned worldwide for the production of the high-quality industrial canvas since 1917. Purchased in 2005, JT Inglis is now part of the British Millerain Group and continues to operate globally.
Regentex is specifically produced for the equine industry to suit New Zealand’s harsh climatic conditions. It is a polyester/cotton blend, woven in India exclusively to JT Inglis’ specifications. The cotton element gives breathability, whilst the polyester gives the fabric its strength.
The base fabric is then shipped to England for proofing, dyeing, and finishing with rot and water-resistant treatment from India. Following this, each batch is tested to ensure it passes the specification requirements.
These results are sent with each shipment to ensure there is the clarity with each batch. The fabric is then shipped direct to New Zealand and then down to Matamata.
We also choose to use quality cover linings. We use a 100% Woolen lining for our Wool lined rugs and believe this is long-lasting and hard-wearing. Our Tartan Polypropylene lining is very popular with our Racing Customers. Known for its lightweight feel but valuable warmth. The 10oz Cotton Duck liners have a good reputation for adding a gleaming shine to each horse's coat, while the 20oz Jute is as popular as ever, keeping your horse warm throughout the seasons.
Our covers are finished with quality leather fittings. We use a heavy Chrome which is between 4.0 to 4.5mm in thickness. This provides great strength to the straps and shapes we have on our covers.
As well as using the greatest materials available to us, we have a very experienced sewing team. Lucky for us, our team has been sewing the Gregory cover for over 15 years so I think it is fair to say they know a bit about the Gregory pattern and how it should look and fit. We are fortunate that each one of our sewing team has great machine skills and takes enormous pride in each cover they produce. They are proud to make these wonderful covers for New Zealand and the rest of the world and get a huge thrill out of completing each order.
An Industry Recognised Design
The Gregory Cover pattern has set precedence over how a Canvas cover should fit over the last few decades. We believe we have it just right!
Our Cover has a unique front, unlike any other cover of its kind. Our 2-piece gusset provides your horse with an unrestricted fit around the shoulders and neckline. It also helps prevent those unsightly shoulder rubs. The 5-hole leather front shape contributes to the ultimate fit as well. With 5 holes of adjustment, your Gregory cover can fit snug around the horse’s neck while it is still maturing and growing. As your horse grows and fills out you can adjust the strap as you need to, to make your horse comfortable and the cover is fitting correctly.
The backline is contoured to the horse to ensure the correct fit is achieved. It sits close to the horses’ backline to provide a snug fit. There is nothing worse than receiving a brand new canvas cover and placing it on your horse only to realize it sticks out like a tent!
The rump darts in the back end of the cover contribute to the overall fit of the cover. Our covers have three darts in the rump to help keep the cover in place and sit straight. The darts are strategically placed to prevent cover slippage and contribute to the ultimate fit.