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Top Young Equestrians Descend on Sydney

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Posted: Wed, 11th Sep 2019

Almost 350 Top young riders from around Australia will compete across 7 different disciplines at the former Sydney 2000 Olympic Venue.

The Thoroughbred Industry Careers Pony Club Australia Nationals is less than one month away, with the event taking place at the prestigious Sydney International Equestrian Centre, 10 years after New South Wales last hosted the event. The event will be held from the 7th of October to the 13th of October and will cover a multitude of disciplines including Dressage, Showjumping, Eventing, Tetrathlon, Mounted Games, Formal Gymkhana, and Quiz. Almost 350 talented young equestrians will be competing in the week-long championship at the Sydney 2000 Olympic venue.

The last championships were held in Toowoomba in 2017, where New South Wales achieved 3rd place overall in the Roger Braham OAM Perpetual Shield behind host state Queensland who were the overall winners. As the host state for 2019 NSW will be hoping for the same result. New South Wales riders had some outstanding individual results, with team members returning to defend their titles in Sydney, including William Wood from Armidale Pony Club who claimed 1st in the Junior Formal Gymkhana; and Molly Smith from North Star Pony Club placing 1st in the Sub-Junior Showjumping.

Winner of the Sub Junior Showjumping Championships in 2017 Molly Smith from North Star Pony Club. Photo: OzShotz

With the Nationals being held on home soil and expectations running high, a series of training weekends have taken place around the state in locations such as Coffs Harbour, Sydney, Denman and Gundagai to prepare horses and riders to be in top shape for the competition. Christine Campbell, president of Corindi Pony Club says “To be able to have international level coaching in the regional areas for these talented country kids is just amazing.”

An exciting event in the program is the Tri Nations Cup, where teams from China, France and Australia will compete in showjumping on borrowed horses. New South Wales rider Jessica Towns competed in the 2017 AQUIS Tri Nations Cup in Toowoomba, where the Australian team placed 1st, in front of France and China in 2nd and 3rd respectively. Before the event, Jessica said “Practicing for an event where I will be riding an unfamiliar horse is a little tricky, however I have been working closely with my coach to quickly adapt to different horses by figuring out the changes in strides and ways to change my riding to suit each individual horse”. This year NSW rider Ashleigh Bennett of Young Pony Club will represent Australia alongside Georgia Elias (TAS), J’Aime Mallon (VIC) and Kaitlin Goss (WA). Ron Waddell (VIC) will be coaching the team, whilst Janet Hamblin of Warren Pony Club, NSW will be acting as Team Manager.

The Thoroughbred Industry Careers Pony Club Australia Nationals 2019 are shaping up to be a fantastic event with many wonderful sponsors on board including Thoroughbred Industry Careers, PETstock, Arena Saddles, Aussie Blue Heeler Products, CEVA Animal Health, Randwick Equine Centre, NEGS Armidale, Gow Gates Insurance Brokers, and Ranvet. Spectator entry to the Championships is free, please come along and see the future of Australian Equestrian in action.  

Gallery: Click to enlarge

Molly Smith Ozshotz
Rachael Temm Ozshotz

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