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News from Vicki

10 March 2011

Did an entire week in the Philippines coaching and preparing them for their National Ch'ships show on the weekend.  I have done this for them a couple of times, and this time I took a slightly different tack.  My problem in the past has been that i have been so concerned with teaching them and their horses as much as I can in the time available that by the time they got to the show, the horses and riders were knackered!  This time I tried to back off a bit, and structured the Clinic so that combinations were ready for the show, and it worked really well, with all 15 riders showing a huge improvement on previous efforts.  We were also blessed with great weather for that part of the world, not too hot, and enough rain during the week to make the outdoor footing as good as it could be.  For the Clinic we train indoors in the giant indoor arena at the Manila Polo Club, where the footing is pretty good.

Rebecca Dosch and Lockhart
Rebecca Dosch and Lockhart, previously owned by
Katie Lawrence (now
Stanley) looking great

Mikee Jaworski  and Rustic Rouge.
Long time student Mikee Jaworski looking picture perfect on her
Asian Games Gold medal winner, Rustic Rouge, who we purchased
from Melissa Froesch. Rou is now 17, and nearing the end of her
career, but won the 1.20 class on the first day. Mikee won the
1.30 class on the second day on a more recent purchase from us, Ash
(now named Noble Blue), and are the Philippine National Champions.

Danni Virata
Danni Virata, who has been in Australia to train with us, in the
F.E.I. category B Ch'ship. This was won by her brother Diego, 
and both improved a lot during the week's Clinic.
Thanks to Dindin Lagdameo for the great photos!

Lessons are conducted early in the morning, and later in the afternoon, so I had a bit of free time inbetween, so it was good to have the time to watch the entire second round of the Nations Cup at the US venue of Wellington, Florida.  Great job of our Aussie team to run =3rd in pretty classy company, with James Patterson-Robinson's super effort of being double clear on his WEG horse Niack de l'Abbaye only being equalled by the legendary pair of Mclain Ward and Sapphire.  The Americans won with a very heavy hitting team that had McLain, Beezie Madden on her new star Coral Reef Via Velo, Mario Deslaurier, and Margie Engle on the ex Aussie horse, Indigo, who jumped a clear and a 4 faulter.  Apart from James' fantastic effort, Harley Brown and Cassiato had a 4 faulter, and then caved under pressure to have a severe miss in the easy first line to pick up 13 faults.  That plummeted us down the rankings, but then ex NSW rider Damian Guthrie came back from a 12 fault first round to record a solid 8 fault round to climb us back up the standings.  James then sealed the high placing with his immaculate clear.  Other ex NSW rider Thaisa Erwin was the 4th team member, but only the best 3 (which then all count) go to the 2nd round, and Thaisa and her 8 year old Waddison had been found to be a bit out of their depth in the first round.  So US first, Canadians second (another strong team, Eric Lamaze, Ian and Jonothan Millar and Yan Candele), and us equal 3rd with the Brits and the Irish.

Sydney Royal acceptances out, and this year they had record entries in nearly every section, with under 50 % being accepted.  Part 1 is strongest in numbers for years with 20 horses being taken.  Kenny Kartoon is in Part 1, and Willy Welsom and Casino being in Part 3. Benny and James are in Young Riders, and Steph and pocket rocket Cy are in Juniors, so good times ahead we hope...

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