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  • Writer's pictureFran Cleland

Bits: Abbey tribute, Vicki Roycroft update and cutest pics you will see this week

ABOVE: Harry Ball on Abbey. Picture from the Australian Stock Horse Society.

THE Australian Stock Horse Society recently acknowledged the great Heritage sire Abbey, with 50,000 carrying his name in their pedigree.

The society was privileged to host Coral Ball, along with her family, in at a special morning tea where Coral presented the ASHS with trophies Abbey had won in competition with her late husband, Harry Ball.

These now sit pride of place in our Heritage Centre at Head Office in Scone.

Harry was killed in a road accident in 1964 at 35 years of age, just weeks after winning the Duke of Gloucester Cup and welcoming twins Tracey and Hilton. Another daughter, Chris, says one of his dreams did come true before his death - "to breed the best horse ever".


VICKI Roycroft continues to make an amazing recovery after collapsing in the Royal Sydney Showjumping ring.

Vicki, 70, was rushed to hospital suffering a tear in the aorta, and underwent emergency surgery. Yet just four days later she was walking, talking and asking to go home. One tough lady.


THOSE wanting to watch the action at the world-famous Adelaide International Horse Trials but can’t go will be pleased that Horse and Country TV are providing exclusive worldwide coverage.

You will find directions from their Facebook page. Remember to be on guard against the scammers that have offered service at every recent event.


PONY Club Australia has selected its members to compete in the 2023 World Clubs Tournament in France in July. This event is scheduled every year during the French National Championships (Generali Open de France) which takes place in the Federal Equestrian Park at Lamotte-Beuvron.

It is one of the largest equestrian gatherings in the world.

The team is Catelin Crawford, Tumut NSW; Amy Cunzolo, Comet QLD; Lalwa May, Berrimah NT; and Abby Raymond, Bellingen NSW.

The team will be accompanied by PCA coach Rachael Edwards from Victoria and will ride horses borrowed from a French riding school and compete against teams from 26 nations.

Rachael was PCA coach of the year in 2020 and Abby was PCA junior rider of the year in 2022.

Lalwa was the only NT rider to compete in the last PCA Nationals in 2021 and is believed to be the first indigenous rider of any age to represent Australia in showjumping.

Pony Club Australia last sent a team to this event in 2018 and relies on the generosity of colleagues at the Normandy Committee of the French Equestrian Federation.

During their time in France the Australian team will tour the historical French national stud farm at the Haras du Pin, and be guests at a unique performance by the elite French Cadre Noir Riding Academy on the World Heritage site of Mont Saint Michel in Normandy.


THE Tenterfield Saddlery is up for sale and fans of the Australian songwriter Peter Allan, who had a hit song about it, are calling for government intervention to preserve its history.

This small, two-room building was built from hand-cut local blue granite, timber and tin on the high street of the northern NSW town in 1870.

The building – and the brand it fronts – was listed by Lloyds Corporate Brokers this week. The sale includes associated trademarks and intellectual property. According to the listing, there has already been interest from a number of big-name investors including David Jones and Meat and Livestock Australia.


SIDESADDLE riding is not dead, and there’s still interest right down to pony club level.

Mirboo North Pony Club in Victoria welcomed Stacey Rusic from Same Side Equestrian to their April rally. Despite challenging conditions, riders and ponies had a great time learning about side-saddle riding and having a go on their own ponies.

Same Side Equestrian is a Victorian based business dedicated to anything relating to the discipline of side saddle.

More information is avilable from their webside.

For more cute image sof young sidesaddle riders, visit the Mirboo North Pony Club Facebook page.


THE baldy-faced chestnut champion racehorse Apache Cat was always a crowd favouriteand has been in happy retirement at Living Legends in Victoria.

In February 2021, Patch was diagnosed with eye cancer, which was a worrying time for everyone. However, thanks to the expertise of eye specialist Dr. Andrew Turner from All Animal Eye Services, Patch underwent surgery and radiation therapy, and his eye has been looking good ever since.

“We are thrilled to announce that a recent check-up with Dr Turner, two years later, confirmed that there is no sign of the original cancer,” Living Legends chief executive and Veterinary Director Dr Andrew Clarke said.

“We feel incredibly fortunate to have access to such excellent specialist services provided by Dr. Turner and his team.

“Patch is such an important part of the Living Legends family and we are overjoyed to share this positive news with our supporters. We will continue to provide him with the best possible care and attention to ensure his continued wellbeing.”

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