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News from Vicki

8 April 2010

Show ended up good.  Willy Welsom continued to be star with a 3rd in his last Part 3, which meant he only had one rail down in his 4 starts and 7 rounds.  He qualified for the Mini Prix, so I nominated him, but was concerned about the triple bar, oxer, vertical treble combination, and thought I'd see how he felt.  We were 2/3rds down the draw, and heaps of good, more experienced horses were crashing and burning through this treble, so while he jumped a great round up til then, I thought because of his tender years and experience, to pull out before the treble, as the little guy had busted his guts all show, so I didn't want to scare the daylights out of him at that point.  So we retired after he boomed the oxer prior to the treble, and popped over the triple bar at Number 1 instead!  Nonetheless he earned the best Young Horse title, sponsored by Julie Wilson, so I was very proud of him, as the only other horse I have won that on was Errol at his first Royal Show.

Sophie and Ben had much better finishes, with Sophie riding a foot perfect round on Jane in the pouring rain, just to have an unlucky front rail in the vertical, oxer double.  So she really needed another 2 or 3 classes, as they were just getting back into their groove again.  Ben and Ryles jumped a good first round clear, then had a good cut in the jump off, but didn't meet the double well enough on the turn up, so had that down as well as the final plank, but ended up 5th, so got a well earned bow, with Tommy McDermott capping off his great show by winning on Rolex.  So he got the Leading Young Rider, and Leading Junior Boy.  Sos McMillan was Leading Junior Girl.  Andrew Inglis and Amira were Leading Part 3 horse, Wendy Schaeffer was Leading Rider, and Leading Part 2 horse with Sun Dancer, and Part 1 horse with Sunset.  Grant Hughes had a great show with his large team to get Champion Jumper with Yakkity Yak, gained in the last class with a 3rd in the World Cup.  Grant was also 2nd on Emmaville Ricochet, while Clem Smith did an amazing job to scrape every last bit of scope out Dark Ages to win the World Cup with a 0/5 score.  These two know each other very well, and the horse has great faith in his jockey, who doesn't let him down, but sometimes Clem has to carry Darkie over the back rails!  Jamie Kermond looks to be right back up there with Des Russell's stunning grey stallion Valhalla, who jumped a super first round, just to have one of the simpler fences down, a plain vertical at number 3.  John Vallance did a good job with the World Cup tracks, as of the 22 starters, 13 horses were having their first World Cup, so it was a delicate balance to keep the class up to standard, but not scare the life out of first timers.  It was a bit tougher in the 2nd round at night under lights.  The track was bigger, but very straightforward, but horses didn't cope with the lights so well.  In hindsight, one practise fence out on the ring, as the RAS did last year, would have been a good option, as many of the horses didn't 'sight' the first fence, that was quite a simple vertical.

All ponies now pleased to be home and back in their paddocks, so they can have a couple of days off before Sydney Polo Club Show on the weekend.

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