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  • Writer's pictureFran Cleland

Royal gala lights up the faces of showies in the north

ABOVE: Hannah Cross celebrates a great day on Tahiti. Picture: ANGIE RICKARD

THE Show Horse Council of Victoria responded to the request of many of its members to hold an event in the north of the state with a show at Tatura in the Goulburn Valley.

For those used to the long drive to the two major equestrian centres in the state at Werribee and Boneo Park on the Mornington Peninsula, it meant forgoing the many hours of travel usually required to show their horses.

As a result, the Southern Stars Royal Gala at Tatura Parl was well filled with happy people.

The two rings ran smoothly, even with a late judging change after Robert Cockram was struck down with flu and Paul Morath stepped into his place.

To their credit, the Show Horse Council works hard to try and give all levels of competitors a chance to have a level playing field.

With the dominance of the professional stables in open classes it gets harder to win a bow of any colour so providing newcomer, preliminary and owner rider classes goes a long way to keeping people in the sport.

ABOVE: Amelia Baines and Beauparc Versace. Picture: TONI McCLUSKEY

Leading rein is always a favorite and the tiny tots were well catered for with classes for leading rein show pony, show hunter pony, Shetland Pony and owner rider.

The winners were Rivington Tegwen and Laura Bridge, who took the show hunter sash, Kiah Gold Armani and Sarah Beaumont, who won the owner rider section, DP Barbie and Maddison Backman were awarded the show pony sash and Colvadale Reliance won the Shetland class for Madelaine Bridge.

At the other end of the scale, the big horses were out in full bloom, showing their paces in perfect weather in the two arenas.

Clint Bilson showed Bellaire Cartier to win the big show hack and Sabrina Gilmour rode Royal Oak Foreign Affairs to take out the class for small hacks.

The winning large show hunter hack, LP Bleu De Cheval ( The Blue Horse) ridden by Greg Mickan for Terry Van Heythuysen is a handsome young horse. Greg also rode the winning small show hunter hack, Global PPS for owner Stephanie Barrington.

Hannah Cross, who travelled from Bathurst, rode her own Tahiti to win the owner rider large hack and was runner-up in the open large hack class.

Olivia O’ Reilley won the owner rider large show hunter class with CJP Louis of Loxley.

Perhaps the busiest pony of the show was Britt Holmberg’s Ascot Anne Marie. The dainty mare carried different small riders in three different sections winning champion open small pony, champion open small child’s pony and champion first ridden pony.


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(Click on any image to expand)

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