We have been working hard all winter and over the break from shows we have acquired a few new horses as well as some new riders. Including my Dad, Barry who has been jumping for about 4 weeks.
The new four-legged additions to the team are Alondra (no introduction needed, when I look back through her performance card she has actually been in the sport longer than me!) and Celso, who has officially commenced his career of going to horse shows. He handled it all like a pro. Coralline, a long-standing member of the team has had a change of pilots with Barry (dad) now claiming her on his list and Oliver who is owned and ridden by working pupil Maddy Rush. Maddy is now also riding Chicago Bay and they had a good first show together.
We headed off Friday morning with a full semi load plus car and float. Friday afternoon Celso jumped his first ever rounds off the property jumping clear in the 70cm and 80cm handling it all extremely well. Barry and Blondie had their first ever start as a combination also jumping clear in the 70cm and 80cm which we were all very proud of!
The GV Jumping Club must be commended on the terrific job they did of organising the show. The surface in the indoor (Ring 1) was fantastic all weekend and all of their new jumps and gear made for a professional looking arena.
Saturday morning saw the start to a big day of jumping in ring one. The show organisers are predominantly junior members and they do a truly brilliant job to make the show happen. With this in mind, the program does cater for juniors somewhat, which is fine to compensate them for their hard work however with composite classes for the first three events it made for long classes and forced the 1.10m and 1.20m to be changed to A2 classes, with the 1.20m running into the dark. This is a problem which can easily be alleviated and I’m sure the show organisers will take it into consideration to make the show even better in the future.
The 90cm was the first class on ring 1 Saturday program. Coralline and Barry jumped a great clean round but with an error of course for 4 faults. Celso jumped double clear and Maddy and Chicago Bay jumped double clear to eventually place 5th. The maiden D grade was next and I had my two 5 year olds in this class, Carisma and Le Belvedere. Carisma jumped double clear and finished in 5th place. Le Belvedere jumped a good round but just got a little green down the last line. He has been battling an abscess all week so he did a good job and I decided to give him the rest of the weekend off. Volador jumped clear in the 1.10m A2 and placed 4th in that class. The last class on the day time program was the 1.20m A2 in which I started Volador and Alondra. They both jumped clear but out of the placings, this class was won by Junior rider Brianna Devine and King Tutankhamen who rode a cracker of a round!
The Grand Prix was held Saturday night with 20+ starters. It was a hotly contested event with around 7 clear in the first round ensuring a fast paced jump off. Phil Stevens and the very aptly named “Unleashed” came out the eventual winners after jumping a lightening fast round in the jump off. Kristy Bruhn was second with Belcam Cosmic. Kristy had three starters in the Grand Prix and had stopped in at Tatura on the way to the Queensland World Cup Shows where I am sure she will have plenty of success with her strong team of horses. Brook Dobbin took 3rd and 5th respectively, with both of his lovely grey geldings: Advisor and GP Shine. Fourth place went to Laurie Lever with Chancellor and in 6th place was Anthony March riding Renovator.
Barry and Coralline had starts in ring 2 and jumped double clear in the 85cm to finish his first show on a great note. I didn’t have start until the Mini Prix so had a very easy morning for a change.
First event on Ring 1 Sunday program was the Maiden D grade which won by James Richardson with Kendalee Lap Dance. The Junior Championships was next followed by the Mini Prix. After Saturdays jumping I made the decision to step Volador up to the Mini Prix instead off starting him in the D grade championship. Volador came out and jumped fantastic and handled the bigger track really well with a nice clear round. It was my first show on Alondra and I am still getting used to the big grey V12. She jumped a really nice clear round in the first and I felt so much more comfortable with the ride I need to give her even from the day before. Seven horses went through to the jump off and it was a pretty competitive field as Kristy had her three good horses through to the jump off and Jonathan Smith and Sanskrit Park Vision. My first ride was Alondra and I decided to just take it steady but take a couple inside lines. I unfortunately went a bit past my line to the double and she had the front rail off the oxer but aside from that jumped a nice round. The others were all jumping clean and fast with Jono in the lead and Kristy in second with 1 clean and fast. Volador was last out in the jump off and I took the wider options as it was by far the biggest track he has ever seen. He jumped an excellent clear round to finish off in 3rd behind two very seasoned campaigners. So the placings of the Mini Prix were as follows:
1st Sanskrit Park Vision – Jonathan Smith
2nd Harbarty – Kristy Bruhn
3rd Volador – Jess Barton
4th Belcam Cosmic – Kristy Bruhn
5th Alondra – Jess Barton
6th Jack – Kristy Bruhn
The last class for the weekend was one for the young horses – the D Grade Championship. This class was won by Murray Sproull riding Hollingrove Eve. Murray and wife Julie always have a lovely team of young horses and were in the placings throughout the weekend.
All of the Junior riders did a great job over the weekend with plenty of classes on the program to keep them busy. The three junior classes on day one were won by the following combinations. The 90cm was won by L Waddell riding Shadow of a Doubt. The 1.05m Junior was taken out by Maddi Connell riding Ellison Stretch and the 1.10m Junior was won by Max Height riding the delightful Snow Spider. Sunday’s Junior Championship was won by M Robertson riding Amaroo Vee Bee.
The Goulburn Valley Jump Club ran an excellent show and you can see improvements even from the first show 12 months ago. The venue at Tatura is one which I believed should be used for show jumping events more often as the facilities are great, the arena and warm up have good surfaces and are a good size and it generally has a nice atmosphere.