April 22, 2022
More than 70 horses and riders from all over South-East Queensland converged on Nanango’s Showgrounds recently for Queensland’s first official Australian National Working Equitation event of the year.
Seven of the state’s eight affiliated clubs were represented at the weekend event, which was hosted by the South Burnett Working Equitation Club (SBWEC).
“There were some exceptional horsemanship skills on display,” SBWEC president Julie Brown said.
“We fielded entries from the Introductory level right through to Consagrados II, and we were delighted to be able to offer competitors riding Preliminary and above the opportunity to compete in the fourth phase of Working Equitation, which is Team Cattle Penning.
“Eight teams of riders took to the arena with each member of the team attempting to safely and successfully pen their allocated beast within a three-minute time frame,” Julie said.
“Of the 31 rider and horse combinations, 23 penned their beast, which was an outstanding result.”
Julie said the club was also very grateful to cattle donors and transporters.
“Without their support, we could not have offered this additional phase to our competitors,” she said.
Andrew Mulligan, the Chair of Australian National Working Equitation Ltd, travelled from Mudgee to officiate over the weekend.
“Having feedback for competitors from a judge of his standing to complement our other valued judges was another highlight,” Julie said.
The club was also able to offer special prizes for Thoroughbreds Off The Track and Standardbreds Off The Track.
The prizes were sponsored by Dr Linda Schiemer of Nanango Veterinary Surgery and Ruth White of Bratton Park Training Centre.
“In addition, Doug and Betty Flint provided sponsorship and Hodgleigh Holdings provided prize packs from Drought Angels,” Julie said.
“Our club is so grateful for the ongoing support we receiove from our sponsors, who are enabling this event to grow from one year to the next.
“Reg Webb was on the microphone keeping us entertained all weekend and the Coffee Road van kept everyone upbeat.
“The standard of the competitors over the weekend was exemplary.”
Working Equitation is a vibrant technical discipline comprising three compulsory phases – the Dressage test, Maneability (ie dressage around obstacles) and a timed Speed event around obstacles, along with an optional Team Cattle Penning phase.
The sport originated in Europe and has developed a solid following in Australia with affiliated clubs in six States.
Competitors are awarded points for placing in each phase, with the points accumulating and the highest points combination being declared the winner.
All competitors receive feedback in the form of results sheets showing their allocated marks along with comments from judges.
The South Burnett Working Equitation Club was formed in 2019 and has expanded every year since.
“Anybody wanting more information is very welcome to contact us by email,” Julie said.