THE new format has been a success for the Working Hunter League at Gransha Equestrian Centre, Bangor! The small classes, cross-poles up to 70cm, were held inside in the Antwerp Arena. The course was very simple and inviting for young children and young ponies and horses. In the Derby Arena, courses from 70cm up to 1.10m, with plenty of fillers and the water complex for the bigger classes, proved to be perfect for the Northern Ireland Qualifiers for both horses and ponies.
The day ran very smoothly and thanks to Kirsty Jackson, who single handedly ran the classes in the Antwerp arena, and Courtney Stuart and Jenny Bell, who kept the Derby Arena flowing successfully.
Katy Allsop rode ‘Dotty’ to win both the cross-pole class and the 40cm Working Hunter, with Poppy McIlduff on ‘Luna’ sharing first place in the cross-poles and finishing second in the 40cm class. Abi Gaardner had a mixed day, with a win in the 50cm Working Hunter and a fifth place in the 60cm class.
Alice Salters on her lovely ponies ‘Candy’ and ‘Marley’ had a great day, winning both the 60cm and 70cm competitions, while Eva O’Neill successfully rode her new pony ‘Lula’ to finish second and third in the 60cm and 70cm classes respectively. Darcey Greer had a fourth place on ‘Duke’ and Charlotte McAllister finished second and third in the 70cm and 60cm classes on ‘Ruby’.
In the Derby Arena, the Little sisters had a successful day, with Rosemary and ‘Homegrown Rolex’ winning the 70cm Performance class, followed by second in the 70cm Working Hunter and third in the 80cm NIF qualifying class. Sister Sylvia rode ‘Ben’ to win both the 70cm and 80cm Working Hunter classes. Lyndsey McCartney finished second and third in the 70cm Performance class and Working Hunter on ‘Logan’s Leap’ and Shannon McIlroy on ‘Flurry’ took third place in the Performance class.
The Gardner family also had a good day out, with Abi’s success in the Antwerp Arena and mother Elaine taking home a first, second, third and fourth rosettes in the Small Horse WH and 90cm WH on ‘Ollie’ and ‘Alfie’ in the 80cm and 70cm Working Hunter classes.
Phoebe Beaumont riding her new mount, ‘Roundthorn Claddagh’ was consistent, finishing second in both the Small Horse and 1m Working Hunter classes. After an exciting round on ‘Powder Day’ in his first class, Ralph Robinson won the 90cm Working Hunter class with a foot perfect round and excellent show for his second phase. Second in the 90cm class was Leanne McNamara on ‘OB Touch’.
Cerys Howell qualified for NIF in the 1m class on her new mare, ‘Rita’ and in the 1.05m class on the very consistent ‘Lulu’.
The day finished with a competent round ridden by Robyn McFadden on ‘Red Hot Chilli Piper’ in the 1.10m class.
The next Working Hunter will be on Saturday, November 23; Combined Training on October 26; Winter Woolies on October 27 and Show Jumping on Sunday, November 10.