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  • Writer's pictureFran Cleland

Historic Avenel Horse Trials never fails to draw a crowd

ABOVE: Sophia Hill and Tulara Baltango took out the two-star class. Picture: DEREK O’LEARY

THE AVENEL committee has a 57-year history of producing top-class horse trials, firstly at the original property at Mangalore, and now close to Tullamarine Airport on the beautiful Woodlands Park.

More than 400 riders competed in glorious summer weather this year and there was a general air of happiness to be out and about again with a long and busy season ahead.

It was Sophia Hill’s Tulara Baltango’s first try at a two-star class and he did it in fine style rising from third after the dressage with two solid clear rounds. Her other mount in the class, Seattle Park, finished fifth and took the Best Performed Off-The-Track (OTT) award.

There were two divisions of the one-star class, with Beylee Eve’s Kenlock Indian Sky winning one and the other, for Thoroughbred horses in a field of 32 ex racehorses, Mia Wright’s Rangeview Toranos backed up a good dressage test with good jumping rounds to take the class.

ABOVE: Fleur Timmins and Noble Puppet placed second in the EVA 95 Division one. Picture: DEREK O’LEARY

There were three open EA 95 divisions won by Fiona Fox on the Thoroughbred Peek A Boo, Isabella O’Connor’s Courtier and Teegan Ashby’s Riverdowns Legacy.

The fourth EA 95 division for Young Horses was won by Lucy Kolomanski’s OTT, Fanatical.

The EA 80 classes are always a mixed bag of talented breeds. The winners of two sections Jessica Biggins on Regardez Secrets and Kim Hughes’ Highfield Luda Melba are Warmblood horses, while the third division winner, Emily Walker’s Pretty Hill Stardust, is a purebred New Forest Pony. The roan mare also took out the People on Ponies award. (It’s pleasing to see the performance pony breeds like New Forest and Connemara taking their place in open classes and doing well.)

Asha Warnock’s Bounce AE won the Young Horse EA 80 section.

Two divisions of the EA 65 went to Sophia Hill’s Bundabulla Earl Grey and Carlee Ryder’s One Direction, with the Young Horse division going to Georgie Birrell’s Fonzie.

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