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News from Vicki

4 May 2009

Copabella last weekend held in perfect weather luckily, as we'd had enough rain the week before to make the ground a bit like porridge. But it was a great turn up of spectators, and John Vallance built lovely tracks, while his other half, Jane Frankum, kept the event flowing with her super efficient marshalling. Katrina Dukats was the ever capable judge, and Tim Dreverman is getting better and better as a knowledgeable and entertaining commentator.

Cougar was a bit of a star in both his starts. Poor guy, he arrived in January not quite C Grade, but a couple of good performances, and off he went to Sydney Royal, where he was such a good boy, but a bit amazed by the harness horses. Luckily none at Copabella, but still a bit green for the Shooting Stars class, let alone the Mini Prix. But he put his best hooves forward, and was clear in both classes, and clear again in Shooting Stars jump off, and 1 down in the Mini Prix jump off to run 4th both days. Both classes were won interestingly enough, by imported mares by Belgian sire Darco, Amira and Andrew Inglis taking out the Shooting Stars, and Chuggy on Alice Cameron's Oaks Altes the Mini Prix.

The kids all went well, with all 3, Sophie, Carrie and Lee quaifying for Sunday's Final, where the nerves took over a bit, Sophie and Levi having the last down, Carrie had a few blonde momentson Sam, but finished well, and poor Lee rode a super round until the triple combination, which required a strong ride in, as it was an oxer up the hill off a turn, with a long stride to a vertical, followed by another vertical. Lee gave her a great ride to the oxer, but little Puzzle is so careful, and a bit short in the stride department, so chipped in the second stride, and Lee was over her head! Still Monique Barrett, and later in the day, Johnny Cooper did the same thing, so she was in good company. I even had to give Cougar quite an aggressive ride in, and he has a massive stride...

Linda Dobson looked fabulous winning the main class on her Indigo, with the only other double clear being David Robertson on Sharpe Seal, who had a blonde moment in the second round, but a most entertaining class. Tom McDermott was the star of Juniors and Young Riders, winning both titles.

Hawkesbury this last weekend gets better and better, as the ground improves each year. David Lawrence built great tracks all three days using Jumping NSW gear. Took babies on Friday, with my Errol 4 year old filly, Nikki, taking in the atmosphere like a veteran, and jumped lovely rounds. Saturday and Sunday were for the experienced ones, and Cougar took another step forward by coming 2nd in the Grand Prix to Peter Carcary on Poet's Corner, who jumped a great round on the clock, with Cougar 1 down in a quick time, and Nick Taliana and Ambrose 3rd. Sophie had a busy weekend, with her first show on new horse, Noblewood Park Caeser, who only arrived at Mount White on Wednesday, so Sophie was only having her third ride on him. A lovely clear round HC in the D Grade on Saturday, then on Sunday 0 and 4 in the 1.10, and just 1 time fault for 5th place in the 1.20. Clydie, after having an eye infection the week before that prevented him doing Copabella, had a 3rd in the 1.10, and Levi jumped good rounds with the odd unlucky rail.

Willy turned C Grade with a 2nd and 3rd placings, and new boy Ash got his first point by being 3rd in the D Grade Ch'ship behind Belinda Prestwidge and Oakley Doakley, and Colleen Brook and Montango. Then he jumped a great round in his first 1.20 class to just have 1 down overjumping into a triple bar vertical double, so I hope he has a bit of a future.

Dubbo in 2 weeks, then things quieten down a bit on the show front...

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