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  • Writer's pictureFran Cleland

Like mother like daughter, a showing dynasty lives on


ABOVE: Harry Armistead Riemer on Candy with Aunty Nicole leading. Picture: ANGIE RICKARD

WHEN Lynda Riemer bought a young, bay Riding Pony filly she had no idea what the future would bring.


The filly, named Radford Lodge Candy Cane but known by all that knew her as just Candy, was to become one of the most decorated show ponies of modern times.


At just 12 hands high, she was from the very beginning as sweet as she was pretty.


“I bought her as a yearling, almost two, in 2008 to be a leading rein pony,” Lynda said.


It wasn’t long before the pony starting being noticed at big events. At just three and not long broken in, she was reserve champion leading rein pony at Barastoc ridden by Tahlia Young, the first of several young riders to begin their show career on Candy.


Others to enjoy the partnership with the pony were Olivia McCormack, Paris Graham, Poppi Plumb, Maddi Gin, Abby Heffer, Katie Ajani Tori and Tilly Fair all won on her.


After a career that gave her multiple wins at Barastoc, royal shows and the Grand National, Candy retired to the paddock to have three foals inlcuding unfortunately, a red bag foal.


To everyone’s delight however, she returned to the show ring a few years ago as a leading rein mount for the Reimer family’s first grandchild, Harry. Happy to be back in her rightful place she immediately carried the little boy to a win at Geelong Royal Show and the Show Horse Council show in Victoria, which qualified them for the Grand National but Covid put paid to that.


Sadly, it would be Candy’s final show season.


Of Candy’s surviving foals, her son is a stallion and is successfully breeding show foals and the family had sold his full sister, Sugar Plum, her only living daughter.


Fate meant that Candy fell ill at the same time Sugar Plum was advertised for sale.


“We enquired about her at the same time Candy was fighting for life at Werribee veterinary hospital,” Nicole Riemer said.


“We committed to buying her on what would turn out to be the same day we lost Candy.”


The five-year-old chestnut daughter was faced with huge shoes to fill, and was carefully broken in, trained and qualified by Danyel Riemer.


Riegal Sugar Plum (or Holly) started her show career last December as all the spring shows were cancelled from floods and like her mother, easily qualified for the Grand National just before Easter.


“We decided to take her, even though she was green and a baby, and, poignantly, she was ridden by Tahlia Young who was the first to win way back on her famous mother,” Lynda said.

“We were shocked and so excited when she won at only her seventh show.”


There are no forward plans for the pony, and the Riemers will just play it by ear, but are blessed with the memories of a pony that was one of a kind.


With also her son, Riegal Secret Love, a show ring winner producing quality foals and a daughter that is already a big winner, they have a lot to look forward to.


ABOVE: Riegal Sugar Plum ridden by Tahlia Young winning at the Grand National this year. (Trophy presented by Melanie Skinner.) Picture: AMY SUE ALSTON

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