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News from Vicki

10 March 2009

Autumn has arrived, and there is a chill in the air, but it is such a lovely time of year with still, sunny days often following the misty mornings. We are lucky in that we still have an amazing amount of green pasture that sees all horses just thriving.

Errol has done a good job, and so far put all the mares that have come to him in foal. We just have one left, the recent arrival of the Butcher twins, a lovely type of mare bred by Kate Wallace by Trak. She was covered twice last week, and is now off season. So I decided it was time to pick up my gift horse from John Singleton, the beautiful filly out of his very good mare Belle du Jour, but because this one was conceived using AI, she cannot be raced or breed any AJC horses, so John thought I might like to try her for jumping!! I did point out she was a bit young, only 2, and at that time unbroken. So his stud manager Bridie Sparks has broken her in, and reported her to be a lovely, well balanced ride, so I picked her up last week, with the plan being to free jump her to see if she had any ability, and if so, put her in foal to Errol, whereby by the time we have weaned the foal off her, she will be ready to start her jumping career. So it was with some anxiety that I put her on the lunge to try her over her first crossrail, because as I had said to John, just because Belle du Jour was a champion racehorse doesn't mean she would have been a good jumper, but to my delight Baby Belle showed quite a cute jump with very promising technique. A second try yesterday saw a bit more improvement again, so now we will be a bit serious about trying to put her in foal, which I'm sure Errol will be delighted about.

Also at last we have had the Sydney Royal acceptances, with Irish being in Part 1, and Cougar in Part 3. Sophie is accepted in Juniors on Gilmore Rockafella, which is exciting for her, as it will be her first Royal, as it will be for Sarah Meale, who is accepted into Young Riders on Cassini's Girl, so I think I'm going to feel like the den mother, although Amanda Soper will have more of that responsibility, as she will be staying in with the horses.

Jump Club last weekend good, with Strutts and Tjeert being ridden by new team member Andreas Jonsson, who is out here from Sweden for a couple of months. Carrie and Tarryn jumped good rounds on Sam and Mich, as did Sara and Shrek, and Lee and Puzzle look such a polished pair. Just a shame Lee was only a bit too old for Sydney Royal, although still an EFA junior til the end of the year, so will be aiming for Young Riders next year..

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