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  • Writer's pictureFran Cleland

Bits: Star club stars, brumby protest and Aussies overseas

ABOVE: Star clubber Kyle, founder and secretary Sharon Bassett and committee member Jamie Illfield-Bell with the President of Business Singleton Danny Eather.

THE Star Club Equestrian Program has been named Business of the Year in the Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion category of the 2023 Singleton Business Awards.

The award was presented at a gala event in front of 280 guests and fellow business owners.

The Star Club Equestrian Program is a not-for-profit association providing people with an intellectual disability an opportunity to participate in a safe, friendly and inclusive equestrian program. Activities provide quality of life, social interaction, development of skills and the opportunity to attain personal goals.

It is run entirely by volunteers with no government assistance. More information can be found about their wonderful work here or on their Facebook page.


A PROTEST rally calling for an end of lethal management of Australian Brumbies will be held in Melbourne’s Treasury Gardens on August 30 from 11.30am. Participants will walk from there to the steps of Parliament House. Organisers are also asking for a count of Brumbies in the Australian Alpine National Park, using a method other than distance computer software.


THE scams continue. There are more and more pay-to-watch scams appearing on horse event Facebook pages and fans need to be careful. The administrators of the pages keep deleting the messages but it’s still up to people to be wary, and check with organisers. The Friends of Werribee Park Horse Trials group has also had its page cloned twice. The fake pages have been reported. Check the name of the person on the page – in this case one from Nandita Pradhan and the other Md Babu Mia – and treat every page as fake until it’s verified.


WITH the Olympic Games getting closer, Edwina Tops-Alexander competed at the International Arena in the Netherlands with Corelli de Mies in the first week of the 2023 Summer Festival. On Sunday, only four pairs cleared their way into the jump-off in the CSI4* 1.55m Grand Prix, where Corelli delivered two great rounds and placed third.

"I was extremely happy with the performance of Corelli today," she said. "He is in great form and really gave maximum. It was a tough course with only four clear rounds.”

Tops-Alexander will be back at the arena next for the two-star event and then the Olympic trials on July 18.

She will be part of the Australian Jumping Team for the qualifier along with Lauren Balcomb and Verdini D’Houtveld Z, Christopher Burton and Chedington Hazy Toulana and Hilary Scott and Oaks Milky Way. It is not know yet if Tops-Alexander will ride Fellow Castlefield or Corelli de Mies. The reserve is Thaisa Erwin, riding High Star Hero or Vanturo.


AUSTRALIA'S Todd Hinde has been appointed as the new Director of Jumping by the International Federation for Equestrian Sports, the Fédération Équestre Internationale (FEI).

Todd has been a valued part of the Equestrian Australia team since he took on the role of the Chef d’équipe in 2017 for the Australian Jumping Team in the lead-up to the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games in Tryon.


THE Victorian Tradesman and Delivery Horse Group is holding a harness horse educational seminar at the Heathcote Showgrounds on July 23.

Speakers include Robert Cockram talking about breeding, presentation and turnout, Esther and Mark Goodwin who will share their knowledge on fitting and care of harness and Peter Lane will talk on dentistry. Further details here.


EQUESTRIAN Australia has announced the Australian combinations selected for the 2023 FEI World Breeding Federation for Sport Horses Dressage Championships for Young Horses to be held from August 3-6 at Ermelo, The Netherlands.

Simone Pearce’s No Limit, owned by Familie Ritzinger and groomed by Emily Reudavey, has been selected for the five-year-old section.

The six-year-old representative is Maree Tomkinson’s Imagine II (OLDBG), owned by Maree and Mark and Lyn Sultana and groomed by Nina Ditz.

Alicia Ryan will be riding Merricks Sonique, owned by Susan Ryan and groomed by Lyndal Kramer, in the seven-year-old section.


THE sudden loss of Wendy Jane Dickenson has distressed her many friends at the Ararat Pony Club. Wendy was a life member, past DC and president, committee member, much-loved instructor and treasured mentor to so many. Her kindness, generosity, passion and humour will be remembered.


TWO life memberships were awarded at the Victorian Carriage Driving Awards evening to Janice Gorick and Jenny Martin.

Other awards were: Junior Driver (Josh Holm), Young Driver (Olivia Linic), Merit Award (Tracey Tuohy) and President's Award (Lorraine Cairns).

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