Miguel de Lancastre e Tavora (Abrantes) was born in Portugal, son of the ninth Marquis and Marchioness of Abrantes. He started riding with Nuno Oliveira at eight years of age. He rode with Nuno until he was 18 years old, at which time he attended the Military Academy.
In his military career, he completed the Course of Instructors and later the Course of Masters at the Portuguese Military Riding Academy of Mafra (CMEFED) and competed in eventing, show jumping and dressage. He was later appointed as the Director de Ensino de Equitação, (Chief Instructor and the Director of Equestrian Teaching) of the Mafra School.
On retiring from the army, Nuno Oliveira arranged for Miguel to migrate to Australia, where with his wife Dianne they run their own equestrian centre (M & D Tavora School of Equitation). Miguel is a NCAS Level III Instructor (dressage specialist) which is the highest level in Australia. He trained numerous horses himself, and horses and riders in Australia and in the USA to FEI level-many competing at Grand Prix Level-and conducts regular clinics in Australia, the USA and Portugal.
His upbringing may have been in the Iberian tradition, but his 'bible' was The Gymnasium of the Horse by the German master, Steinbrecht. While he revels in the artistic dimension of dressage, he is equally intent on producing competitive riders at the highest level, using the classical principles-and his pupils have shown that correct training can also be winning training.
Miguel wrote equestrian articles for The Horse magazine in Australia, and the Portuguese magazine Equitação. He published his first Equestrian book, Conceitos Equestres, in his home country, Portugal. This English language version is soon to be available.