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News from Vicki

6 September 2011

Been a bit quiet for competitions, so nothing much to report. With the early warm weather, Casino has had three mares to cover already, yet he is great to handle for natural serving, and once the saddle is on his back, the mares are pretty well forgotten... such a nice stallion.

So it was great to have a new show at Maitland, run by the Hunter Valley Jumping Club, appropriately called the Spring Championships.  And what a lovely show it was, the weather was absolutely superb, the ground was in pretty good order, great tracks by Sue Bettington, and great organization by a very hard working committee headed up by Sue Middleton.  Many thanks to all of you.  Special mention to another couple of unsung heroes, Alan Head who kept the flow up in the warm up ring, and has done so at Maitland for ages now in a calm, unflappable manner, and the amazing  judge Joyce Brook, who while somewhere in her 80's is still as sharp as a tack with an indefatigable work ethic.

Team Roycroft had a great show with my 3 boys jumping their socks off.  Kenny won the Grand Prix, another lovely rug for him provided by Stable 8, with the only double clear round over quite a strong 1.40 track.  When we walked the course I asked Sue Bettington if she would mind maybe putting the first of the treble, a bit of a gappy vertical, down a hole to make it a little more friendly going in, and she kindly agreed, and then just out of interest we measured it, and found it still to be 1.40!  So it had been 1.45, so it would have been a bit tough for the younger ones starting (two of them mine!).  Sue then checked b and c of the treble, oxer, vertical, and put them down a hole to 1.40!  So I reckon while I've only got the one eye, it still works pretty well!  Casino was second, and absolutely jumped out of his skin, and still feels great after stepping up at Toowoomba, and now again here, with only the first fence (wave planks on flat cups!) down in the second round.  Nic Carraro was 3rd on Columbo, a thoroughbred that Nic to his credit has totally produced himself.  He also had 4 faults in a slower time than Casino.  Willy Welsom was 4th, and he also jumped awesome, but he was my third ride in a small field, so by the time I got to him I was running out of gas, and he does require a bit of strength to overcome the spookiness, but that is becoming easier.  Jack Maunder was 5th on one of his new imports, and Colleen Brook jumped a super clear second round to be 6th on Harry Owen's Valondra, a beautiful ride on quite a green mare.

Benny had a great show, winning 3 classes.  Nikki had stepped up to be his second Young Rider horse at Toowoomba, and now has become his first!  She and Ben won the Young Rider on the Saturday with a super double clear, then Ben won 2 classes with Pamelet, our lovely little Wirragulla Hamlet mare who is now improving at every outing.  Also going well for Ben was Strawberry Belle, the official name of the John Singleton bred mare who is the only foal of John's superstar Belle du Jour, but is ineligible for the AJC Studbook as she was conceived by A.I., but she is now showing some of her mum's champion qualities in another discipline.  Also going gangbusters was Steph and Ri McKillop, Steph and superpony Cynan winning the 1.20 class on Saturday (beating Willy into 2nd, no mean feat!), and having some good placings on Ultimate Frisbee, who we purchased a few months ago, with the view of either McKillop child bring him on.  Being a Vivant, he is a little bit cheeky, so is suiting Steph better.  Riley in the meantime is having a super time with Sam Buchanan's gun junior horse, Our Great Show, and while they have only been together a very short time, look like they have been partners forever, and jumped clear rounds all show with a second and third placings.  Issie Whatley got her first ribbon with Alf, her faithful pony from New Zealand, and Molly (aka Bling NZ) jumped some good rounds, having come back from an injury spell.  Lee Warneke went well on Saturday with Puzzle, also a bit short of a run, but as always jumped great.

Casino enjoying molasses water

It was quite warm on the Sunday, and having 3 in the class, I had them all
out early so I would have time to work them all.  Thus I got Nic to bring out some molasses water, which Casino quite enjoyed!  He is being held by
Issie, with new recruit AJ being responsible for Willy.

The girls' side

The girls' side. Nikki closest, then Molly, Belle and Pam.
The boys, Kenny, Casino, Willy and Alf were down the other end.

Vicki and Steph

Steph McKillop won the 1.20 class on the Saturday on super pony Cynan
(but here riding Frisbee )beating her trainer on Willy.  Shucks...

Riley McKillop and Our Great Show

'Riley McKillop has struck up a great partnership with his new horse Our Great Show.  They look like they have been together forever.

Benny and Nikki

Benny looking quite serious, but Nikki very pleased with herself after
winning Young Rider 2 Phase on Saturday with a smart double clear

Ben's Brad (Sir Joindre) has found a great new home with Lucy Munt.  Lucy's dad is ex international rider Barry Munt, so her genes are outstanding, but Brad will be her first big horse, so we will be helping her make the step up to a different sort of horse.  But Brad is fun because he feels wonderful in his jump, and makes you feel like you could jump anything.  We are looking forward to seeing them out together.

While Casino was doing his good things here, his dad Casall La Silla got 30,000 Euros for being 7th in the GCT Grand Prix in Rio!  Not quite as good as Edwina and Itot, who were 2nd and earned 210,000 Euros, not a bad paycheck.  Gerco Schroder and the appropriately named Eurocommerce London won the class with the only double clear and 320,000 Euros!   Pheww!!!

Jump in the Park in a couple of weeks for Casino, Willy and Nikki and Ben, then the 3 boys go to Melbourne Royal, where Kenny will jump Part 1, and Willy and Casino Part 2.

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